Category Archives : Hybrid



Hybrid and multicloud strategies for financial services organizations

A need for hybrid and multicloud strategies for financial services

The financial services industry is a dynamic space that is constantly testing and pushing novel use cases of information technology. Many of its members must balance immense demands—from the pressures to unlock continuous innovation in a landscape with cloud-native entrants, to responding to unexpected surges in demand and extend services to new regions—all while managing risk and combatting financial crime.

At the same time, financial regulations are also constantly evolving. In the face of the current pandemic, we have seen our customers accelerate in their adoption of new technologies, including public cloud services, to keep up with evolving regulations and industry demands. Hand in hand with growing cloud adoption, we’ve also seen growing regulatory concerns over concentration risk (check out our recent whitepaper on this), which have resulted in new recommendations for customers to increase their overall operational resiliency, address vendor lock-in risks and require effective exit plans.

Further complicating matters, many financial services firms oversee portfolios of services that include legacy apps that have been in use for many years. These apps often cannot support the implementation newer capabilities that can accommodate mobile application support, business intelligence, and




Azure Hybrid Benefit now generally available for Linux
Azure Hybrid Benefit now generally available for Linux

Coinciding with this week’s Kubecon and Open Azure Day virtual events, today we’re announcing the general availability of Azure Hybrid Benefit functionality for Linux customers, allowing you to bring both your on-premises Windows Server and SQL Server licenses, as well as Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) subscriptions to Azure.

During the preview period, over 1,500 Linux virtual machines have already been migrated to Azure using the new Azure Hybrid Benefit capabilities, helping to significantly reduce the costs of running enterprise Linux workloads in Azure.

While previous Bring-Your-Own-Subscription cloud migration options available to Red Hat and SUSE customers allowed them to use their pre-existing RHEL and SLES subscriptions in the cloud, Azure Hybrid Benefit improves upon this with several capabilities that are unique to Azure and makes enterprise Linux cloud migration even easier than before:

Applies to all Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server pay-as-you-go images available in the Azure Marketplace or Azure Portal. You don’t need to provide your own image. Save time with seamless post-deployment conversions—there’s no need for production redeployment. You can simply convert the pay-as-you-go images you used during your proof of concept testing to bring-your-own-subscription




Simplifying declarative deployments in Azure
Simplifying declarative deployments in Azure

Azure provides customers a simple and intuitive way to declaratively provision and manage infrastructure through Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates. You can describe your entire Azure environment using template language, and then use your favorite CI/CD or scripting tool to stand up this environment in minutes. The ARM template language takes the form of JSON and is a direct representation of the resource schema. Which means you can create any Azure resource using an ARM Template from day one and configure any setting on the resources. Using ARM templates, you can describe the resources needed to make up the environment in a declarative, parameterized fashion. Because the ARM templates are declarative, you need only specify what you want, and Azure Resource Manager will figure out the rest.

Over the last couple of months, we have renewed our focus in ARM template deployments with a focus on addressing some of the key challenges shared by our customers. Today, we’re sharing some of the investments we’ve made to address some of these challenges.

Simplified authoring experience with Visual Studio Code

Our newest users have shared that their first time authoring and editing an ARM template from scratch can be intimidating. We have




Azure Stack updates and how it enables intelligence at the edge

Today, more than ever before, it is essential that our colleagues, customers, and partners be able to react quickly and confidently to rapidly changing circumstances. The ability to ingest, analyze, and act on incoming information requires that an organization have a robust, scalable technology infrastructure.

Such an infrastructure is not limited to one place or one platform. Modernized, and cloud-native applications can span across on-premises, multi-cloud, and edge environments. Creating and managing this vast technology estate requires a modern paradigm that enables seamless experiences, no matter where the workload exists. The mindset of combining on-premises and cloud environments into a hybrid cloud has become a force in today’s industry and has been a core part of our strategy since the inception of Azure. In the face of the unprecedented transitions in today’s world, our mission remains the same: To enable our customers and partners to transform their organizations to achieve more, wherever they are.

Healthcare and Azure Stack

The healthcare industry has recently been confronted with incredible demands. Healthcare providers must balance the need to efficiently treat many new patients, and work with sensitive data to unlock possible treatments. These missions require that healthcare organizations practice diligent and careful stewardship




Microsoft announces next evolution of Azure VMware Solution

Today, I’m excited to announce the preview of the next generation of Azure VMware Solution, designed, built, and supported by Microsoft and endorsed by VMware.

With the current economic environment, many organizations face new challenges to find rapid and cost-effective solutions that enable business stability, continuity, and resiliency. The new Azure VMware Solution empowers customers to seamlessly extend or completely migrate their existing on-premises VMware applications to Azure without the cost, effort, or risk of re-architecting applications or retooling operations. This helps our customers gain cloud efficiency and enables them to innovate at their own pace with Azure services across security, data, and artificial intelligence, as well as unified management capabilities. Customers can also save money with Windows Server and SQL Server workloads running on Azure VMware by taking advantage of Azure Hybrid Benefits.

Microsoft first party service

The new Azure VMware Solution is a first party service from Microsoft. By launching a new service that is directly owned, operated, and supported by Microsoft, we can ensure greater quality, reliability, and direct access to Azure innovation for our customers while providing you with a single point of contact for all your needs. With today’s announcement and our continued collaboration with




Microsoft is expanding the Azure Stack Edge with NVIDIA GPU preview

We’re expanding the Microsoft Azure Stack Edge with NVIDIA T4 Tensor Core GPU preview during the GPU Technology Conference (GTC Digital). Azure Stack Edge is a cloud-managed appliance that brings Azure’s compute, storage, and machine learning capabilities to the edge for fast local analysis and insights. With the included NVIDIA GPU, you can bring hardware acceleration to a diverse set of machine learning (ML) workloads.

What’s new with Azure Stack Edge

At Mobile World Congress in November 2019, we announced a preview of the NVIDIA GPU version of Azure Stack Edge and we’ve seen incredible interest in the months that followed. Customers in industries including retail, manufacturing, and public safety are using Azure Stack Edge to bring Azure capabilities into the physical world and unlock scenarios such as the real-time processing of video powered by Azure Machine Learning.

These past few months, we’ve taken our customers’ feedback to make key improvements and are excited to make our preview available to even more customers today.

If you’re not already familiar with Azure Stack Edge, here are a few of the benefits:

Azure Machine Learning: Build and train your model in the cloud, then deploy it to the edge for FPGA or




Microsoft powers transformation at NVIDIA’s GTC Digital Conference

The world of supercomputing is evolving. Work once limited to high-performance computing (HPC) on-premises clusters and traditional HPC scenarios, is now being performed at the edge, on-premises, in the cloud, and everywhere in between. Whether it’s a manufacturer running advanced simulations, an energy company optimizing drilling through real-time well monitoring, an architecture firm providing professional virtual graphics workstations to employees who need to work remotely, or a financial services company using AI to navigate market risk, Microsoft’s collaboration with NVIDIA makes access to NVIDIA graphics processing units (GPU) platforms easier than ever.

These modern needs require advanced solutions that were traditionally limited to a few organizations because they were hard to scale and took a long time to deliver. Today, Microsoft Azure delivers HPC capabilities, a comprehensive AI platform, and the Azure Stack family of hybrid and edge offerings that directly address these challenges.

This year during GTC Digital, we’re spotlighting some of the most transformational applications powered by NVIDIA GPU acceleration that highlight our commitment to edge, on-prem, and cloud computing. Registration is free, so sign up to learn how Microsoft is powering transformation.

Visualization and GPU workstations

Azure enables a wide range of visualization workloads, which are critical




Unified network monitoring with Connection Monitor now in preview

Azure Network Watcher’s new and improved Connection Monitor now provides unified end-to-end connection monitoring capabilities for hybrid and Azure deployments. Users can now use the same solution to monitor connectivity for on-premises, Azure, and multi-cloud setups. In this preview phase, the solution brings together the best of two key capabilities—Network Watcher’s Connection Monitor and Network Performance Monitor’s (NPM) Service Connectivity Monitor. Check out the documentation and start using Connection Monitor to check connectivity in your network.

The monitoring question

Customers have long stressed over the need for unified connection monitoring for hybrid deployments, where complex applications transact across Azure, on-premises, and with other public applications to deliver business-critical functionality. These challenges escalate in multi-cloud environments. Monitoring teams then wrestle with basic challenges including:

Which monitoring solution to use in these complex set-ups? Do I need different monitoring solutions for on-premises and Azure or any other clouds? Where does my data go and how do I correlate data from multiple sources? How do I get the fastest alerts when things go wrong in my network? Connection Monitor in preview

With the new Connection Monitor, you can now configure both Azure and non-Azure virtual machines and hosts for monitoring connectivity to global




Learn new strategies and technologies to optimize your hybrid cloud

IT environments are becoming more complex as organizations are combining on-premises, cloud, and edge infrastructures. There are some major benefits to having a flexible, hybrid IT environment, such as the ability to create new business value while also meeting local and industry compliance requirements, but the headaches of managing and securing these environments are hard to ignore. But, with a solid strategy and the right tools, there’s enormous potential for innovation and growth with a hybrid environment.

This is why we’re sharing the upcoming one-hour Azure Hybrid Virtual Event on Tuesday, March 31, 2020 starting at 8:00 AM Pacific Time. At this free online event, you’ll get to watch demos, learn hybrid best practices, and find out which strategies work—and which don’t—from two real Azure hybrid customers: online retailer ASOS and professional services company KPMG. Julia White, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Azure Marketing, will kick off the event with a keynote on current and future hybrid cloud trends, followed by some great sessions:

Insights from Bain & Company—building a successful hybrid cloud: Hear from Bill Radzevych, a partner at Bain & Company, about market trends and customer insights with digital transformation and cloud adoption.  Seamlessly manage and govern resources:




Azure Stack HCI now running on HPE Edgeline EL8000

Do you need rugged, compact-sized hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) enabled servers to run your branch office and edge workloads? Do you want to modernize your applications and IoT functions with container technology? Do you want to leverage Azure’s hybrid services such as backup, disaster recovery, update management, monitoring, and security compliance? 

Well, Microsoft and HPE have teamed up to validate the HPE Edgeline EL8000 Converged Edge system for Microsoft’s Azure Stack HCI program. Designed specifically for space-constrained environments, the HPE Edgeline EL8000 Converged Edge system has a unique 17-inch depth form factor that fits into limited infrastructures too small for other x86 systems. The chassis has an 8.7-inch width which brings additional flexibility for deploying at the deep edge, whether it is in a telco environment, a mobile vehicle, or a manufacturing floor. This Network Equipment-Building System (NEBs) compliant system delivers secure scalability.

HPE Edgeline EL8000 Converged Edge system gives: Traditional x86 compute optimized for edge deployments, far from the traditional data center without the sacrifice of compute performance. Edge-optimized remote system management with wireless capabilities based on Redfish industry standard. Compact form factor, with short-depth and half-width options. Rugged, modular form factor for secure scalability and serviceability in edge and hostile environments including