Today at the Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft announced our Community Technology Preview of Windows Azure. Windows Azure enables you to host your web applications in Microsoft data centers on a scalable and highly available software platform. Windows Azure is a comprehensive platform that we designed and built with developers in mind:
- Windows Azure provides a scalable and highly available virtualized hosting environment on which you can develop and deploy .NET applications. Our environment includes machines and load balancers, so that you can create your own scalable applications.
- Windows Azure provides a storage service that includes support for blobs, tables and queues, which means that you can concentrate your development efforts on your core business logic.
- Deploying services on the Windows Azure platform is a simple process of creating a declarative service model that the Fabric Controller interprets to orchestrate the service’s deployment. The fabric controller monitors software and hardware activity and adapts dynamically to any changes or failures. The Fabric Controller controls the data center resources and manages them as a shared pool for services. You are freed from worrying about procuring hardware or day-to-day management concerns.
- Windows Azure provides you with a rich developer experience, which includes a complete desktop development environment. This allows you to write, debug and test your Windows Azure applications on your desktop prior to deployment to the data center. Visual Studio integration makes this a familiar and powerful experience.
We are releasing Windows Azure technology in a staged way, exposing more and more new functionality over time. For instance, support for native code will be released in 2009.
Starting today, you sign up for access to the Windows Azure tech preview at https://www.azure.com. Please give it a try and let us know what you think!