Posts Tagged 'Microsoft Cloud'

IaaS on Azure

Okay, this post may be a bit of a rant. Things should not be unnecessarily complicated … but they are.

I just wanted to launch a VM instance on Windows Azure Virtual Machines to take a look at the Visual Studio 2013 preview. Seems simple enough, right? Just log in to the Azure portal and spin up a new VM from the gallery from an image configured with VS 2013. Then, just step through the Wizard and connect with RDP.

Figure 1. Select VS 2013 Image

Give the machine a name, select instance size (small, in my case), and specify a username and password and we should be good to go.

Well, yes, and no.

Okay, the instance launches and appears to be running. As far as I know I am being charged for this resource now.

Figure 2. Instance is running

Cool. My instance seems to have a public IP address and I should be able to connect to it via RDP, login using the username and password I specified and party on. Just like Amazon EC2 and Rackspace.

But no! There is a problem.

Try and connect using RDP to actually use the instance and there is an error.

Figure 3. Denied!

So, what is going on here?

Right now I haven’t the slightest idea. Maybe it is something simple or obvious. Maybe they didn’t enable RDP on the image. Maybe I am doing something stupid.  Maybe I need to open a port or set a security group or something.  But … at this point I don’t care.  I don’t have the time or patience to troubleshoot it.


I’m going to spin up a Windows Sever 2012 instance on Amazon EC2, install the VS 2013 preview myself and take it from there. At least I know I will have no problem connecting to the instance.  Amazon IaaS is, imho, much more straightforward to use.

Kevin Kell

Microsoft Announce Unified Cloud Strategy at Tech Ed

Today is the first day of Microsoft’s annual Tech·Ed conference and unsurprisingly, Cloud Computing was prominent during the day. A major message presented was that Cloud Computing is the most efficient way an organisation can run its IT operations. Those who attended last year will recognise this message ! However, this year Microsoft have provided a clear product description as well as a practical demonstration of how this can be achieved rather than just talking conceptually.

At the heart of the Microsoft Cloud strategy announcements has been that the next release of Microsoft System Centre which will allow businesses to control both public and private cloud workloads from a single view. This is something that is not readily available currently from any other Cloud Computing vendor and can provide Microsoft with a clear competitive advantage. A demonstration of the system centre software, which is due for release at the end of 2011, showed how resources could be provisioned from both public and private clouds as long as sufficient resources are available.

For all of this to work, all the software components for deployment need to run from within Microsoft Hyper V based virtual machines. The ability to dynamically provision resources for applications from a central view is incredibly powerful, making full use of on premise resources as well as the public Azure cloud too. This allows organisations to leverage current IT investments whilst using the public cloud as a cost effective way of adding further resources as required in an immediate way. To help widen the access of Hyper V based machines, Microsoft have now announced support for CentOS Linux to add to Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Suse Linux Enterprise Server.

The latest Cloud Computing announcements from Microsoft highlight the maturity and seamless integration of Cloud Computing into their core infrastructure products. Whilst they may not have been first to market in Cloud Computing, Microsoft have clearly been working hard and effectively behind the scenes to develop a coherent portfolio of integrated Cloud Computing products.

If you would like to find out more about Cloud Computing and gain a hands-on, vendor-neutral expert view on various offerings from different vendors, then why not consider attending Learning Tree’s Cloud Computing course. Take a look at the details here. The course will help you decide and plan how best your organisation can leverage the latest Cloud Computing products.


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