Category Archives : Virtual Machines

25

Sep

Rich insights for virtual machines from Azure Monitor
Rich insights for virtual machines from Azure Monitor

At Ignite we announced the public preview of Azure Monitor for VMs, a new capability that provides an in-depth view of VM health, performance trends, and dependencies. You can access Azure Monitor for VMs from the Azure VM resource blade to view details about a single VM, from Azure Monitor to understand compute issues at scale, and from the Resource Group blade to understand whether all the VMs in a common deployment are behaving as you expect.

Azure Monitor for VMs brings together key monitoring data about your Windows and Linux VMs, allowing you to:

Monitor the health and availability of VMs, with customizable alert thresholds Troubleshoot guest-level performance issues and understand trends in VM resource utilization Determine whether back-end VM dependencies are connected properly, and which clients of a VM may be affected by any issues the VM is having Discover VM hotspots at scale based on resource utilization, connection metrics, health signals and alerts Health

Health capabilities in Azure Monitor for VMs include out of the box configurable VM Health criteria that are powered by the same health modeling services used internally across Microsoft.

Health gives you powerful views to VM availability signals, including how many VMs are

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25

Sep

Move Managed Disks and VMs now available
Move Managed Disks and VMs now available

We are encouraged by the response to the introduction of Managed Disks. Since the announcement, we’ve seen many customers take advantage of this new way to manage persistent storage for their Virtual Machines. Here are some of the benefits Managed Disks provides:

The ability to scale your application without worrying about storage account limits Achieve high-availability across your compute and storage resources with aligned fault domains Create VM Scale Sets with up to 1,000 instances Integrate disks, snapshots, and images as first-class resources into your architecture Secure your disks, snapshots, and images through Azure Role Based Access Control (RBAC)

To read more about the benefits of Managed Disks, see Azure Managed Disks Overview.

We’re constantly improving the Managed Disks platform and working to bring new features to market based on customer feedback including:

Managed Disks migration in the Azure Portal OS Disk Swap for Managed Virtual Machines

Another feature I’m excited to announce today is the availability of moving Managed Disks and VMs across resource groups and subscriptions with a single click. This also enables you to move Managed Images and Snapshots.

Get started

To use this capability, you’ll need register for the feature using the PowerShell or CLI instructions

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24

Sep

Announcing Azure user experience improvements at Ignite 2018

Hello Azure friends! Today we are proud to share a new set of improvements to the Azure user experience. The changes included in this blog post are only a subset of the multiple improvements that we are delivering in this release. All these changes have been motivated by the great feedback that you have been giving us so please keep the feedback coming!

Azure user experience refresh

We’ve introduced modern design updates to refresh the look and feel of the portal to increase productivity, improve accessibility, and make better use of your screen real estate.

These updates have been carefully designed to address the feedback that you have been giving us. Some key improvements include:

Improved information density and better use of screen real estate (e.g. vertical menus fit more items). Simplified visuals that reduce clutter, remove unnecessary lines/decorations, and create better flow between different areas in the UI. More intuitive organization of information. Better highlighting of key navigational elements like global search and breadcrumbs. Improved accessibility, updated colors that improve contrast ratios, and subtle updates that align our fonts across the portal. Support for usage over long periods of time (avoid eye-strain).

We’ve made these design updates without changing

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29

Aug

Microsoft Azure, the cloud for high performance computing

Today, we continue to see customers leveraging Azure to push through new frontiers in high performance and accelerated computing. From Neuroiniative’s quest to accelerate drug discovery for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases to EFS’s building of self-driving car technologies, a vast number of customers are leveraging Azure for breakthrough innovation.

We continue to invest to deliver the broadest range of Accelerated and high-performance computing (HPC) capabilities in the public cloud. From InfiniBand-enabled Virtual Machine families for artificial intelligence and HPC, to Hyperscale services like Cray supercomputing, to FPGA-based AI inferencing services in the cloud and edge, Azure enables customers to deliver the full spectrum of AI and machine learning applications.

Azure CycleCloud – the simplest way to execute HPC on Azure

We are excited to announce the general availability of Azure CycleCloud, a tool for creating, managing, operating, and optimizing HPC clusters of any scale in Azure.

With Azure CycleCloud, we are making it even easier for everyone to deploy, use, and optimize HPC burst, hybrid, or cloud-only clusters. For users running traditional HPC clusters, using schedulers including SLURM, PBS Pro, Grid Engine, LSF, HPC Pack, or HTCondor, this will be the easiest way to get clusters up and running in

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23

Aug

Cross-subscription disaster recovery for Azure virtual machines

Today, we are glad to announce cross-subscription disaster recovery (DR) support for Azure virtual machines using Azure Site Recovery (ASR). You can now configure DR for Azure IaaS applications to a different subscription with in the same Azure Active Directory tenant.

An Azure subscription is the basic unit where all Azure resources are contained. It also defines several limits within Azure, such as number of cores, resources, etc. Many organizations use multiple Azure subscriptions in their Azure account for billing or management purposes. For example, some organizations use different subscriptions for production, staging and disaster recovery environments for ease of management and to adhere to the subscription quota limits. With the new capability, you can replicate your virtual machines a different Azure region of your choice within a geographical cluster across subscriptions. This helps you meet the business continuity and disaster recover requirements for your IaaS applications without altering subscription topology of your Azure environment.

Configuring DR across subscriptions is very simple. By default, the target subscription will be same as the source virtual machine’s subscription. You can customize and select the target subscription of your choice and the all the other settings such as resource group and virtual network

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23

Aug

Cross-subscription disaster recovery for Azure virtual machines

Today, we are glad to announce cross-subscription disaster recovery (DR) support for Azure virtual machines using Azure Site Recovery (ASR). You can now configure DR for Azure IaaS applications to a different subscription with in the same Azure Active Directory tenant.

An Azure subscription is the basic unit where all Azure resources are contained. It also defines several limits within Azure, such as number of cores, resources, etc. Many organizations use multiple Azure subscriptions in their Azure account for billing or management purposes. For example, some organizations use different subscriptions for production, staging and disaster recovery environments for ease of management and to adhere to the subscription quota limits. With the new capability, you can replicate your virtual machines a different Azure region of your choice within a geographical cluster across subscriptions. This helps you meet the business continuity and disaster recover requirements for your IaaS applications without altering subscription topology of your Azure environment.

Configuring DR across subscriptions is very simple. By default, the target subscription will be same as the source virtual machine’s subscription. You can customize and select the target subscription of your choice and the all the other settings such as resource group and virtual network

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22

Aug

Reduce your exposure to brute force attacks from the virtual machine blade

Attackers commonly target open ports on Internet-facing virtual machines (VMs), spanning from port scanning to brute force and DDoS attacks. In case of a successful brute force attack, an attacker can compromise your VM and establish a foothold into your environment. Once an attacker is in your environment, he can profit from the compute of that machine or use its network access to perform lateral attacks on other networks.

One way to reduce exposure to an attack is to limit the amount of time that a port on your virtual machine is open. Ports only need to be open for a limited amount of time for you to perform management or maintenance tasks. Just-In-Time VM Access helps you control the time that the ports on your virtual machines are open. It leverages network security group (NSG) rules to enforce a secure configuration and access pattern.

Today we are excited to announce the public preview of configuring Just-In-Time VM Access from the virtual machine blade to make it even easier for you to reduce your exposure to threats.

In one simple click, a Just-In-Time VM access policy is applied to a VM. This will configure a policy that locks down

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21

Aug

DPDK (Data Plane Development Kit) for Linux VMs now generally available

Data Plane Development Kit (DPDK) in an Azure Linux Virtual Machine (VM) that offers a fast user space packet processing framework for performance intensive applications that bypass the VM’s kernel network stack, is now generally available in all Azure regions!

DPDK provides a key performance differentiation in driving network function virtualization implementations, in the form of network virtual appliances (NVA) such as a virtual router, firewall, VPN, load balancer, evolved packet core, and denial-of-service (DDoS) applications. Customers in Azure can now use DPDK capabilities running in Linux VMs with multiple Linux OS distributions (Ubuntu, RHEL, CentOS and SLES) to achieve higher packets per second (PPS).

The following distributions from the Azure Gallery are supported:

Linux OS

Kernel Version

Ubuntu 16.04

4.15.0-1015-azure

Ubuntu 18.04

4.15.0-1015-azure

SLES 15

4.12.14-5.5-azure

RHEL 7.5

3.10.0-862.9.1.el7

CentOS 7.5

3.10.0-862.3.3.el7

In the case of an Azure Linux VM without DPDK, packet processing is through a kernel network stack which is interrupt driven. Each time the network adapter receives incoming packets, there is a kernel interrupt to process the packet and context switch

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20

Aug

Migrate Windows Server 2008 to Azure with Azure Site Recovery

For close to 10 years now, Windows Server 2008/2008 R2 has been a trusted and preferred server platform for our customers. With millions of instances deployed worldwide, our customers run many of their business applications including their most critical ones on the Windows Server 2008 platform.

With the end of support for Windows Server 2008 in January 2020 fast approaching, now is a great opportunity for customers running Windows Server 2008 to modernize your applications and infrastructure and take advantage of the power of Azure. But we know that the process of digital transformation doesn’t happen overnight. There are some great new offers that customers running their business applications on Windows Server 2008 can benefit from as they get started on their digital transformation journey in Azure. One of the options available to customers is the option to migrate servers running Windows Server 2008 to Azure and get extended security updates for three years past the end of support date, and this offer is available at no additional cost. In other words, if you choose to run your applications on Windows Server 2008 on Azure virtual machines, you get extended security updates for free. Further, with Azure Hybrid Benefit you

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14

Aug

Azure Site Recovery powers Veritas Backup Exec Instant Cloud Recovery for DR

Microsoft Azure Site Recovery (ASR) offers Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) for applications running in Azure and on-premises. Using ASR, you can reduce application downtime during IT interruptions, without compromising compliance. ASR provides comprehensive coverage for on-premises applications across Linux, Windows, VMware and Hyper-V virtual machines, and physical servers.

Azure Site Recovery now powers Veritas Backup Exec Instant Cloud Recovery (ICR) with Backup Exec 20.2 release. With ICR, Backup Exec users can easily configure continuous replication for on-premises virtual machines to Azure for a quick failover in case of a disruption on-premises. Backup Exec customers can minimize Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO) for business-critical applications realizing the benefits of Azure as dynamic disaster recovery platform using ICR.

Instant Cloud Recovery requires an Azure subscription and supports VMware and Hyper-V Virtual Machines. ICR provides a summary view, monitoring, replication health details, and key actions directly from the familiar Backup Exec console. You can go to Azure portal for advanced monitoring and failover operations.

Backup Exec Instant Cloud Recovery to Azure is available in all Azure regions where ASR is available. Get started by downloading the Backup Exec 20.2 trial version.

Related links and additional content

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