Category Archives : Hybrid



Accelerate your cloud adoption with the start small and expand landing zone

This post was co-authored by Thomas Maurer, Senior Cloud Avocate, Azure

Tailwind Traders1 is a retail company that is looking to adopt Azure as part of its IT strategy. The IT team is familiar with deploying infrastructure on-premises and are now researching what they need to do in order to run their workloads within Azure. In this blog post, we will walk you through Tailwind Traders’ experience running workloads on Azure using Cloud Adoption Framework and Azure landing zones.

Start small and expand

Tailwind Traders has been researching Azure landing zones and have become familiar with the options available: Start small and expand, enterprise-scale, and partner landing zones.

As Tailwind Traders is just starting their cloud adoption journey and are looking to learn and grow on this journey, they have decided to use the start small and expand landing zone. One thing that Tailwind Traders has learned over the years is that IT is always changing, and there are many benefits and innovations that come with the changes. They understand that as their journey matures, their requirements and needs may change, and, as cloud providers add new features and products to their range, new opportunities will arise. Tailwind Traders has decided this is the




Innovate across hybrid and multicloud with new Azure Arc capabilities

Across industries, companies are investing in hybrid and multicloud technologies to ensure they have the flexibility to innovate anywhere and meet evolving business needs. Customers tell us a key challenge with hybrid and multicloud adoption is managing and securing their IT environments while building and running cloud-native applications.

To enable the flexibility and agility customers are seeking to innovate anywhere while providing governance and security, we created Azure Arc—a set of technologies that extends Azure management and services to any infrastructure. Today, we are announcing new Azure Arc innovation that unlocks more scenarios.

Run machine learning anywhere with Azure Arc

Azure Arc enables customers to run Azure services in any Kubernetes environment, whether it’s on-premises, multicloud, or at the edge. The first set of services enabled to run in any Kubernetes environment was Azure data services. We continue to enhance Azure Arc enabled data services based on feedback from customers such as KPMG, Ford, Ferguson, and SKF.

Today, we’re excited to expand Azure Arc enabled services to include Azure Machine Learning. Azure Machine Learning is an enterprise-grade service that enables data scientists and developers to build, deploy, and manage machine learning models. By using Azure Arc to extend




Customers unify hybrid and multicloud IT operations with Azure Arc

Businesses today are building and running applications across a variety of ecosystems on-premises, in multiple clouds, and on edge. To maintain agility and ensure compliance, it’s critical to an organization’s success to effectively manage servers, applications, and data at scale—regardless of where they are located.

Microsoft Azure Arc is a set of technologies that unlocks new on-premises, hybrid, and multicloud scenarios for customers by extending Azure services and management to any infrastructure. Across industries, customers are taking advantage of Azure Arc to bring Azure management to any infrastructure and enable Azure services to run anywhere.

Azure Arc provides a single control plane to consistently manage and govern all of your resources, anywhere. And with Azure Arc enabled services, you have the flexibility to deploy Azure services anywhere—on-premises or in other public clouds. Use cloud innovation where you need it by deploying consistent and always-up-to-date Azure data services anywhere.

Let me share how Ferguson, Africa’s Talking, Siemens Healthineers, and KPMG have enabled seamless management of their hybrid and multicloud resources using Azure Arc, realizing tremendous business value.

Ferguson uses Azure Arc to extend Azure services on-premises

Ferguson, the largest wholesale distributor of plumbing supplies in the United States, uses Azure Arc to




Future-proof your network with Azure for Operators

Increasing competition and ever-growing demand for mobile, always-on services challenges operators to find new strategies to grow profits and gain a competitive edge. To succeed, operators also need to embrace three critical trends:

Changing the economics of their service model. Finding new revenue and shareholder value with 5G. Driving digital transformation, consolidation, and automation.

To address these trends, operators are actively seeking ways to transform their infrastructure, embrace 5G, and evolve their business.

To support operators in capitalizing on this opportunity, we launched the Azure for Operators initiative in September 2020, acting as a trusted partner to provide cloud and edge computing technology and solutions. We are building a platform on the foundation of a carrier-grade cloud and enhanced networking to bring the power of Microsoft’s technology to the operator’s edge. When these capabilities are combined with our broad developer ecosystem and deep business-to-business partnership programs, the result is a unique environment that will help operators accelerate their ability to monetize their network capabilities. 

The advent of 5G technology offers network operators unprecedented opportunities to expand their scale and range of services to enterprise customers in particular. Beyond faster data services for smartphones and 5G networks, other emerging technologies




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