Category Archives : IT Pro



Adventure awaits: Azure Trivia is back!
Adventure awaits: Azure Trivia is back!

You know that feeling—the one that rushes in right after you’ve cracked an achingly tough problem or a tangled string of code. It’s the pure adrenaline, joy, and satisfaction you get from reaching the next level—a new challenge in and of itself.

This year’s #AzureTrivia celebrates your love of problem solving, growth, and adventure. Players will be taken on an exciting, mystical journey where you’ll not only pick up new skills, but test your technical prowess in order to unlock new lands and win some sweet, sweet swag.

Check out @Azure every Monday on Twitter for a new Azure-related question to tackle. Get it right and you’ll be entered to win a weekly prize. Just select your answer from multiple choices and tweet out the correct answer no later than 11:59 PM Pacific Time on Thursday each week. (Be sure to use the handy auto-generated tweet, including #AzureTrivia and the original image, for official entry to win.)

Pro tip: Come back every week for a brand-new problem to solve and the chance to win!

If you love playing #AzureTrivia and want a competitive edge, check out these free Azure learning resources to kick your problem-solving skills up a notch!




Apply the latest Azure Site Recovery capabilities with automatic agent update

One of the biggest hassles faced by administrators while using services provided by cloud providers is the need to catch up with the latest release and stay up-to-date. This involves downloading the latest software and performing frequent upgrades. In an enterprise scenario, this means going through various level of approvals and wait time before you can make any changes. It becomes even more cumbersome if downtime is involved.

Enable Site Recovery to manage automatic updates for Mobility Service

Azure Site Recovery has a monthly release cadence where it makes enhancements to existing features or add new capabilities. Architecture reference shows when you enable disaster recovery of Azure virtual machines, a component known as mobility service agent gets installed on the VM. In order to avoid the overhead associated with upgrading the agents, users can choose to enable Site Recovery to manage updates for you. Once you enable automatic update, the Mobility Service extension gets updated automatically with every new release.

What’s the advantage? You no longer need to plan for deploying the new versions with every release, and automatic update doesn’t require a reboot of your Azure Virtual Machines, nor does it affect on-going replication.

How to enable automatic updates?





Extension Host is coming to Azure Stack with the next update 1811

In August 2018, we informed Azure Stack users of a new capability coming to Microsoft Azure Stack though the blog post “Enhance security and simplify network integration with Extension Host on Azure Stack”. This capability further enhances security and simplifies network integration for Azure Stack. We are proud to share that Extension Host will be enabled by the next Azure Stack update, 1811. Please note, this update does require that two additional certificates be imported in advance.

Skipping the required preparation will result in a failure during pre-update validation checks, and will result in a halt to the updating process. There is still time to acquire these two certificates which are necessary for the integration of Azure Stack update 1811.

A validation check is already part of the newly released 1809 hotfix and it shows a warning alert in the operator portal if the required certificates have not yet been imported. This is a reminder with a call to action to follow the preparation guidance in order to be prepared for the upcoming Azure Stack update 1811.

New deployments of Azure Stack have been requiring these two additional certificates since September 2018. Please check with your Azure Stack hardware partner




Five habits of highly effective Azure users
Five habits of highly effective Azure users

There’s a lot you can do with Azure. But whether you’re modernizing your IT environment, building next-generation apps, harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, or deploying any of a million other solutions, there are foundational habits that can help you succeed.

On the Azure team, we spend a lot of time listening to our customers and understanding what makes them successful. We’ve started to compile a handful of routine activities that can help you get the most out of Azure.

Stay on top of proven practice recommendations

Highly effective Azure users understand that optimization is never really finished. To stay on top of the latest proven practices, they regularly review Azure Advisor.

Advisor is a free tool that analyzes your Azure resource configurations and usage and offers recommendations to optimize your workloads for high availability, security, performance, and cost. Examples of popular Advisor recommendations include rightsizing or shutting down underutilized Virtual Machines (VMs) and configuring backup for your VMs.

You can think of Advisor as your single pane of glass for recommendations across Azure. Advisor integrates with companion tools like Azure Security Center and Azure Cost Management, which makes it easier for you to discover and act on all