Category Archives : Virtual Machines

01

Jun

Today, Azure announces the general availability of Azure ND A100 v4 Cloud GPU instances—powered by NVIDIA A100 Tensor Core GPUs—achieving leadership-class supercomputing scalability in a public cloud. For demanding customers chasing the next frontier of AI and high-performance computing (HPC), scalability is the key to unlocking improved Total Cost of Solution and Time-to-Solution. 

Simply put, ND A100 v4—powered by NVIDIA A100 GPUs—is designed to let our most demanding customers scale up and scale out without slowing down.

Benchmarking with 164 ND A100 v4 virtual machines on a pre-release public supercomputing cluster yielded a High-Performance Linpack (HPL) result of 16.59 petaflops. This HPL result, delivered on public cloud infrastructure, would fall within the Top 20 of the November 2020 Top 500 list of the fastest supercomputers in the world, or top 10 in Europe, based on the region where the job was run.

Measured via HPL-AI, an artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML)-focused High-Performance Linpack variant, the same 164-VM pool achieved a 142.8 Petaflop result, placing it among the world’s Top 5 fastest known AI supercomputers as measured by the official HPL-AI benchmark list. These HPL results, utilizing only a fraction of a single public Azure cluster, rank with the most powerful dedicated, on-premises supercomputing

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01

Jun

Whether you’re a new student, a 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 and Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management and 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:

Expanded support for cost allocation across APIs and downloads. Management group exports in Azure Government. Reminder: Cloudyn retiring on June 30. Selecting relative dates in the cost analysis preview. Help improve usability for Azure reservation and savings features. What’s new in Cost Management Labs. New ways to save money with Azure. New videos and learning opportunities. Documentation updates.

Let’s dig into the details.

 

Expanded support for cost allocation across APIs and downloads

From

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27

Apr

Whether you’re a new student, a 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 and Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management and 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:

Get retail prices in non-USD currencies. New date picker in the cost analysis preview. What’s new in Cost Management Labs. Deploy key design principles with enterprise-scale architecture. Empowering operators on their cloud migration journey. New ways to save money with Azure. New videos and learning opportunities. Documentation updates.

Let’s dig into the details.

 

Get retail prices in non-USD currencies

In September 2020, you learned about the new Retail Prices API and how it gives

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27

Apr

Microsoft is excited to join Red Hat Summit 2021. It is our fifth year consecutively participating, and we look forward to engaging with the Red Hat community. In the April segment (April 27-28), Scott Guthrie, our executive vice president of Cloud + AI, will join Paul Cormier in the keynote “Open hybrid cloud: Changing what’s possible” to talk about our partnership, followed by an Ask the Expert session, “Azure Unplugged: Everything you need to know running Red Hat workloads on Azure.” Later in the June segment (June 15-16), we will feature more in-depth technical sessions and demos.

During the event, we will share the latest developments that enable Red Hat customers to operate natively in Azure. We will cover innovations across migration of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) workloads, building cloud-native apps with Azure Red Hat OpenShift, running Red Hat workloads in hybrid with Azure Arc, operating and managing enterprise Java apps, and automating all tasks with Ansible on Azure.

Here’s a preview of what you will hear from us:

In addition to migrating Red Hat Enterprise Linux subscriptions to Azure Pay As You Go images, Azure Hybrid Benefit for Linux now also supports Azure Reserved Instances. This allows customers

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26

Apr

On April 6, Microsoft participated in the launch of Intel’s 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, where Microsoft announced the upcoming preview of Azure Confidential Computing and general-purpose Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines. Today we are delivering on that promise and announcing the preview of Dv5-series and Ev5-series Azure Virtual Machines for general-purpose and memory-intensive workloads. You can request access to the preview by filling out Intel’s 3rd Gen Xeon Scalable Processors in Azure form.

The promise associated with cloud economics goes well beyond any initial cost reductions that customers may experience when transitioning their IT environments to the cloud. Many organizations implicitly expect, among other benefits, continuous cloud infrastructure efficiency improvements. Specifically, they need a highly secure and “evergreen” infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform that is able to deliver increasing levels of performance and value. They also need fast access to the latest innovation before rolling out at scale within their own data centers. This is also why Microsoft continues to collaborate with technology vendors like Intel and embed the latest Intel hardware innovation within the fabric of Azure IaaS.

Azure Virtual Machines Dv5 and Ev5-series run on the latest 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Platinum 8370C (Ice Lake) processor in a hyper-threaded configuration, providing better value for most general-purpose enterprise-class

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21

Apr

This post was co-authored by Gayle Sheppard, Corporate Vice President, Global Expansion and Transformation.

The UK Meteorological Office (Met Office) is working with Microsoft to deliver advanced supercomputing capabilities for weather and climate research, ensuring the continuation of the Met Office’s international leadership in this area.

Supercomputing is fundamental to the Met Office’s weather and climate science and services. Microsoft Azure’s supercomputing-as-a-service will enable the Met Office to leverage the best blend of dedicated and public cloud services to provide more accurate predictions to help citizens and businesses plan daily activities, better prepare for extreme weather, and address the challenges associated with climate change.

Microsoft Azure will integrate HPE Cray EX supercomputers from Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), plus a Microsoft high-performance active data archive system, and other Azure cloud technologies, along with an end-to-end managed service to deliver this market-leading supercomputing-as-a-service. The partnership will also include innovation services to support the Met Office in exploiting future technologies, such as AI, plus commercialization opportunities.

Work on the project starts immediately, with the supercomputing capability becoming operational starting July 2022. The supercomputer is built in four quadrants to optimize operational resilience for mission-critical supercomputing capability. Each quadrant will consist of an

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05

Apr

This post was co-authored by Altaf Tambawala, Principal Program Manager, Azure

Today, we are announcing the general availability of Cloud Services (extended support), which is a new Azure Resource Manager (ARM)-based deployment model for Azure Cloud Services. The platform-supported tool for migrating existing cloud services to Cloud Services (extended support) also goes into preview today.

Cloud Services (extended support) has the primary benefit of providing regional resiliency along with feature parity with Azure Cloud Services deployed using Azure Service Manager (ASM). It also offers some ARM capabilities such as role-based access and control (RBAC), tags, policy, private link support, and use of deployment templates.

The ASM-based deployment model for Cloud Services has been renamed Cloud Services (classic). Customers retain the ability to build and rapidly deploy web and cloud applications and services. Customers will be able to scale cloud services infrastructure based on current demand and ensure that the performance of applications can keep up while simultaneously reducing costs. Migrating to ARM will allow customers to set up a robust infrastructure platform for their applications.

Available migration paths

Cloud Services (extended support) provides two paths for customers to migrate from ASM to ARM:

Re-deploy: Customers can deploy a

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01

Apr

We are announcing a major release for Oracle WebLogic Server (WLS) on Azure Virtual Machines. The release is jointly developed with the WebLogic team as part of a broad-ranging partnership between Microsoft and Oracle. Software available under the partnership includes Oracle WebLogic, Oracle Linux, and Oracle Database, as well as interoperability between Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) and Azure. This release covers common use cases for WLS on Azure, such as base image, single working instance, clustering, load balancing via App Gateway, database connectivity, integration with Azure Active Directory, caching with Oracle Coherence and consolidated logging via the ELK stack. WLS is a key component in enabling enterprise Java workloads on Azure. Customers are encouraged to evaluate these solutions for full production usage and reach out to collaborate on migration cases.

Use cases and roadmap

The partnership between Oracle and Microsoft was announced in June of 2019. Under the partnership, we announced the initial release of the WLS on Azure Virtual Machines at Oracle OpenWorld 2019. The solutions simplify migration by automating boilerplate provisioning of virtual networks and storage, installing OS/Java resources, setting up WLS, and configuring integration with key Azure services.

Earlier releases focused on a basic set

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30

Mar

Whether you’re a new student, a 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 and Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management and 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:

Prevent exceeding your budget with forecasted cost alerts New cost view for subscriptions What’s new in Cost Management Labs Demystifying cloud economics New ways to save money with Azure New videos and learning opportunities Documentation updates

Let’s dig into the details.

 

Prevent exceeding your budget with forecasted cost alerts

Staying on top of your costs is critical. Luckily, you can easily set up predefined alerts as you approach your budget in Azure Cost Management and Billing. Now you can define alerts based

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15

Mar

HPC-optimized virtual machines featuring AMD EPYC 7003-series processors

Today Azure advances the velocity at which we bring the latest technologies to our HPC customers and the compute performance we put at their fingertips. We are excited to announce Azure HBv3-series virtual machines (VMs) for high-performance computing (HPC) are generally available in the East US, South Central US, and West Europe Azure regions. HBv3 VMs will also be available in the West US3 and Southeast Asia regions soon.

HBv3 VMs are designed to deliver leadership-class performance, message passing interface (MPI) scalability, and cost efficiency for a variety of real-world HPC workloads such as CFD, finite element analysis, computational geoscience, rendering, weather simulation, financial risk analysis, and RTL simulation.

HBv3 VMs bring new capabilities to Azure’s fleet of HPC and AI-optimized VM offerings:

Azure’s first VMs with AMD EPYC 7003 series processors. Up to 19 percent higher per core performance. Up to 2.6 times higher per VM performance for lightly-threaded workloads. Up to 1.9 times higher performance for large-scale MPI workloads. Multiple VM sizes so customers can deploy fit-for-purpose HPC compute. H-series’ highest performance local SSD configuration to date, with up to 7 GB/s of read performance, 3 GB/s of

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