Category Archives : Serverless



Three ways serverless APIs can accelerate enterprise innovation

With the wrong architecture, APIs can be a bottleneck to not only your applications but to your entire business. Bottlenecks such as downtime, low performance, or high application complexity, can result in exaggerated infrastructure and organizational costs and lost revenue. Serverless APIs mitigate these bottlenecks with autoscaling capabilities and consumption-based pricing models.

Once you start thinking of serverless as not only a remover-of-bottlenecks but also as an enabler-of-business, layers of your application infrastructure become a source of new opportunities. This is especially true of the API layer, as APIs can be productized to scale your business, attract new customers, or offer new services to existing customers, in addition to its traditional role as the communicator between software services.

Given the increasing dominance of APIs and API-first architectures, companies and developers are gravitating towards serverless platforms to host APIs and API-first applications to realize these benefits. One serverless compute option to host API’s is Azure Functions, event-triggered code that can scale on-demand, and you only pay for what you use. Gartner predicts that 50 percent of global enterprises will have deployed a serverless functions platform by 2025, up from only 20 percent today. You can publish Azure Functions through API




Azure Cost Management + Billing updates – September 2020

Whether you’re a new student, thriving startup, or the largest enterprise, you have financial constraints, and you need to know what you’re spending, where, and how to plan for the future. Nobody wants a surprise when it comes to the bill, and this is where Azure Cost Management + Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management + Billing can help you better understand where you’re accruing costs in the cloud, identify and prevent bad spending patterns, and optimize costs to empower you to do more with less. Here are a few of the latest improvements and updates based on your feedback:

Simplify financial reporting with cost allocation, now in preview. Connector for AWS is now generally available. Get pay-as-you-go rates for all Azure products and services. What’s new in Cost Management Labs. Expanded availability of resource tags in cost reporting. 15 ways to optimize your Azure costs. New ways to save money with Azure. Upcoming changes to Azure usage data. Documentation updates.

Let’s dig into the details.


Simplify financial reporting with cost allocation, now in preview

Managing cloud




Microsoft named a leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service

We are excited to share that Gartner has positioned Microsoft as a leader in the 2020 Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service (EiPaaS) Magic Quadrant, based on our ability to execute and completeness of vision. Microsoft has now remained an EiPaaS MQ leader for the past three years.

According to Gartner, “Enterprise iPaaS providers continue to broaden their go-to-market strategies to cover an increasing range of enterprise integration scenarios.” Our vision is to help customers enable integration in all areas of their operations, from traditional central IT to business-led activities. Azure Integration Services (AIS), comprising of API Management, Logic Apps, Service Bus, and Event Grid, helps customers connect applications and data seamlessly to the cloud for services such as machine learning, cognitive services, and analytics, enabling increased enterprise-wide visibility and agility.

Best-in-class integration capabilities and platform

As applications and data are becoming more connected than ever, integration has become a key part of building applications. Azure Integration Services provides a comprehensive and cohesive set of integration capabilities spanning applications, data, and AI, with over 370 connectors and UI automation with Robotic Process Automation (RPA), for customers to connect everything quickly and easily. We provide these capabilities through high




Azure Cost Management + Billing updates – June 2020

Whether you’re a new student, thriving startup, or the largest enterprise, you have financial constraints and you need to know what you’re spending, where, and how to plan for the future. Nobody wants a surprise when it comes to the bill, and this is where Azure Cost Management + Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management + Billing can help you better understand where you’re accruing costs in the cloud, identify and prevent bad spending patterns, and optimize costs to empower you to do more with less. Here are a few of the latest improvements and updates based on your feedback:

More flexibility for budget notifications. Subscribe to active cost recommendations with Advisor digests. Automate subscription creation in Azure Government. Subscription ownership transfer improvements. New ways to save money with Azure. New videos and learning opportunities. Documentation updates.

Let’s dig into the details.


More flexibility for budget notifications

You already know Azure Cost Management budgets keep you informed as your costs increase over time. We’re introducing two changes to make it easier than ever to tune your budgets to suit your specific needs.

You can now specify




Microsoft named a leader in The Forrester New Wave: Functions-as-a-Service Platforms

We’re excited to share that Forrester has named Microsoft as a leader in the inaugural report, The Forrester New Wave™: Function-As-A-Service Platforms, Q1 2020 based on their evaluation of Azure Functions and integrated development tooling. We believe Forrester’s findings reflect the strong momentum of event-driven applications in Azure and our vision, crediting Azure Functions with“robust programming model and integration capabilities”, and also confirm Microsoft’s commitment to be the best technology partner for you as customers call out the responsiveness of Microsoft Azure’s “engineering and support teams as key to their success.”

Best-in-class development experience

Azure Functions is an event-driven serverless compute platform with a programming model based on triggers and bindings for accelerated and simplified applications development. Fully integrated with other Azure services and development tools, its end-to-end development experience allows you to build and debug your functions locally on any major platform (Windows, macOS, and Linux), as well as deploy and monitor them in the cloud. You can even deploy the exact same functions code to other environments, such as your own infrastructure or your Kubernetes cluster, enabling seamless hybrid deployments.

In their report, Forrester noted Azure Functions programming model“supports a multitude of programming languages with extensive integration options,




Preview of Active Directory authentication support on Azure Files

We are excited to announce the preview of Azure Files Active Directory (AD) authentication. You can now mount your Azure Files using AD credentials with the exact same access control experience as on-premises. You may leverage an Active Directory domain service either hosted on-premises or on Azure for authenticating user access to Azure Files for both premium and standard tiers. Managing file permissions is also simple. As long as your Active Directory identities are synced to Azure AD, you can continue to manage the share level permission through standard role-based access control (RBAC). For directory and file level permission, you simply configure Windows ACLs (NTFS DACLs) using Windows File Explorer just like any regular file share. Most of you may have already synced on-premises Active Directory to Azure AD as part of Office 365 or Azure adoption and are ready to take advantage of this new capability today.

When you consider migrating file servers to the cloud, many may decide to keep the existing Active Directory infrastructure and move the data first. With this preview release, we made it seamless for Azure Files to work with existing Active Directory with no change in the client environment. You can log into an




Serverless for the enterprise with Microsoft Azure
Serverless for the enterprise with Microsoft Azure

Cloud computing has opened new paradigms for enterprises to reach higher levels of productivity and scale. At the tip of that spear is serverless computing, enabling developers, teams, and organizations to focus on business logic and leave hosting and scaling of resources to the cloud platform.

At Microsoft Ignite, we’re announcing serverless functions with no cold start and network isolation, PowerShell support for event-driven automation, simplified secrets management across serverless apps, unified monitoring capabilities, and increased language support—including .NET Core 3 and Python 3.7! These capabilities expand the list of target scenarios that would benefit from event-driven architectures and bring serverless to operations teams.

Business-critical apps with no cold start and network isolation

Function as a service (FaaS) platforms present a small delay on their first executions, known as cold start. This makes it challenging to adopt serverless functions for mission critical apps where a few seconds can make a huge difference. To address it, we’re announcing the general availability of the Azure Functions Premium plan.

It brings together the best of both serverless and dedicated hosting; you can leverage fast, dynamic scale while benefiting from network isolation, consistent performance, and more predictable costs.

When coupled with our PowerShell




Reducing SAP implementations from months to minutes with Azure Logic Apps

It’s always been a tricky business to handle mission-critical processes. Much of the technical debt that companies assume comes from having to architect systems that have multiple layers of redundancy, to mitigate the chance of outages that may severely impact customers. The process of both architecting and subsequently maintaining these systems has resulted in huge losses in productivity and agility throughout many enterprises across all industries.

The solutions that cloud computing provides help enterprises shift away from this cumbersome work. Instead of spending countless weeks or even months trying to craft an effective solution to the problem of handling critical workloads, cloud providers such as Azure now provide an out-of-the-box way to run your critical processes, without fear of outages, and without incurring costs associated with managing your own infrastructure.

One of the latest innovations in this category, developed by the Azure Logic Apps team, is a new SAP connector that helps companies easily integrate with the ERP systems that are critical to the day-to-day success of a business. Often, implementing these solutions can take teams of people months to get right. However, with the SAP connector from Logic Apps, this process often only takes days, or even hours!





Highlights from SIGMOD 2019: New advances in database innovation

The emergence of the cloud and the edge as the new frontiers for computing is an exciting direction—data is now dispersed within and beyond the enterprise, on-premises, in the cloud, and at the edge. We must enable intelligent analysis, transactions, and responsible governance for data everywhere, from creation through to deletion (through the entire lifecycle of ingestion, updates, exploration, data prep, analysis, serving, and archival).

Our commitment to innovation is reflected in our unique collaborative approach to product development. Product teams work in synergy with research and advanced development groups, including Cloud Information Services Lab, Gray Systems Lab, and Microsoft Research, to push boundaries, explore novel concepts and challenge hypotheses.

The Azure Data team continues to lead the way in on-premises and cloud-based database management. SQL Server has been identified as the top DBMS by Gartner for four consecutive years.  Our aim is to re-think and redefine data management by developing optimal ways to capture, store and analyze data.

I’m especially excited that this year we have three teams presenting their work: “Socrates: The New SQL Server in the Cloud,” “Automatically Indexing Millions of Databases in Microsoft Azure SQL Database,” and the Gray Systems Lab research team’s “Event Trend Aggregation




Event-driven analytics with Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2

Most modern-day businesses employ analytics pipelines for real-time and batch processing. A common characteristic of these pipelines is that data arrives at irregular intervals from diverse sources. This adds complexity in terms of having to orchestrate the pipeline such that data gets processed in a timely fashion.

The answer to these challenges lies in coming up with a decoupled event-driven pipeline using serverless components that responds to changes in data as they occur.

An integral part of any analytics pipeline is the data lake. Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 provides secure, cost effective, and scalable storage for the structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data arriving from diverse sources. Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2’s performance, global availability, and partner ecosystem make it the platform of choice for analytics customers and partners around the world. Next comes the event processing aspect. With Azure Event Grid, a fully managed event routing service, Azure Functions, a serverless compute engine, and Azure Logic Apps, a serverless workflow orchestration engine, it is easy to perform event-based processing and workflows responding to the events in real-time.

Today, we’re very excited to announce that Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 integration with Azure Event Grid is in preview! This means