A bit late this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday and finally taking a bit of time off. We pushed hard to have the first draft of the large proposal I’ve been working on and business model done just ahead of the holiday (proposal for a company planning to migrate 100% of their global datacenter footprint to Azure as soon as possible). The focus was working on the financial model for the migration, both the professional services cost to help design the target architectures and “migration factory” to perform high velocity migrations as well as the final expected steady state Azure consumption once the migration is completed. Those then needed to be compared to their current costs and an estimate made of how much of their current costs would be eliminated. We were provided a huge amount of financial data by the customer but it was a challenge sifting through all of it and creating a model we could then run simulations or scenarios against. Now that we’ve done that, we are running a couple of different scenarios and preparing a presentation outlining our proposal. Tomorrow we review that with the customer.
Given the short week in the US, there were only a few Azure articles of note this week:
Azure Preview Portal – November 2015 update
Today we are proud to announce a new set of improvements to the Azure Preview Portal. Like last time, all these enhancements are in response to the great feedback we’ve received from you. We’re very grateful for your feedback and look forward to more of it!
In our last update we improved our main navigation experience and, as a result, browsing through resources became more easily available and therefore the most common entry point for managing resources in the portal. In this update we made the next step and improved the browse resources experience.
We had set a quality bar for ourselves in terms of usability, performance and reliability that we needed to meet in order to make the portal generally available (GA). Our team has been hard at work improving on those areas and we are glad to share that we have met those quality bars. As a result of that we will be making the portal GA very soon! Azure Preview Portal – November 2015 update | Microsoft Azure Blog
Improvements to the Azure preview portal and after what has seemed like forever, it sounds like it will be going GA soon. I wonder what we will call it once the preview label drops?
Azure PowerShell 1.0 | Microsoft Azure Blog
We are pleased to announce Azure PowerShell 1.0, now available on PowerShell Gallery and WebPI. With this release of Azure PowerShell, we welcome the following changes:
Enable better support for Azure Resource Manager cmdlet use side by side with Azure Service Management cmdlets in Azure Automation. While Resource Manager cmdlets don’t ship out of the box in Azure Automation yet, they will soon. Until then, they can be imported manually as described here. Please follow Azure Automation for updates on when the modules will ship out of the box.
Separate Azure Service Management and Resource Manager functionality to provide clarity regarding features of Azure the cmdlets target
Enforce semantic versioning and ensure cmdlets authored against a given major version of Azure PowerShell will not encounter breaking changes from updates to Azure PowerShell
Availability of Azure PowerShell through WebPI and PowerShell Gallery to enable quicker delivery of new features and defect resolutions
Improvements in the Azure PowerShell documentation and continued focus on documentation
Certificate Authentication Support for Azure Resource Manager
Virtual Machine disk encryption through Azure Key Vault
Introduction of Azure Data Lake and Notification Hub cmdlets
Improvements for Resource Manager, Web Apps and many other Azure services Azure PowerShell 1.0 | Microsoft Azure Blog
Azure PowerShell 1.0 now available in the Gallery and WebPI. The main thing I’m interested in is the improvements around ARM and ASM in Azure Automation. That’s been a complicated area for some time.
Container Fundamentals | Part 2 – Images, Networking & Portability
In this episode on the Containers Channel, we’re continuing our series on Container Fundamentals. Following on from part 1, Matt McSpirit, Technical Evangelist, and Neil Peterson, Senior Content Developer, explore images, container networking and portability in depth. Neil delivers a comprehensive end to end demo that walks you through building and deploying an app in a container on his laptop, before pushing it to the Docker Hub, and then consuming this published container into a container host in Azure – awesome stuff!
Stay tuned on the Containers Channel for more episodes soon! Container Fundamentals | Part 2 – Images, Networking & Portability | The Containers Channel | Channel 9
A continuation of the series we noted in a previous post. You can see from the volume of content around the topic of containers the level of importance it’s being given in reaction to the strong demand from customers. At the same time, in many of my customer discussions, the topic is never raised. Why might that be? Generally Microsoft tends to be talking to the IT side of the house at customers and containers emerged more from the application development side. Shadow-IT like in many cases. Now however as they start to replace (or complement) virtual machines and for important functions, they need to be brought into the IT mainstream.
Meg Whitman: HPE will sell Microsoft’s cloud – Business Insider
We now know how Hewlett Packard Enterprise plans to keep itself in the cloud computing game now that it decided to shutter its public cloud computing business and not compete head on with Amazon, Microsoft, Google and IBM.
HPE is going to partner with Microsoft to sell Microsoft’s cloud, Azure, HPE CEO Meg Whitman told analysts on the quarterly conference call on Tuesday.
She said that HP “reached an agreement with Microsoft” in which HP will sell Microsoft Azure as its “preferred cloud alternative.” In exchange, HP will become a “preferred” cloud services provider when Microsoft customers are looking for consulting or other help, she said. Meg Whitman: HPE will sell Microsoft’s cloud – Business Insider
This was certainly interesting on several levels although I don’t think I saw anything from official sources so who knows what the reality is. This would certainly make more sense for HP than continuing to burn money on the OpenStack thing they were doing with no hope of ever catching up to Azure/AWS or differentiating enough. When you see other huge companies shuttering such efforts, you should consider two things: first, how large a bet it was from Microsoft to build Azure and scale it. While we were a bit late, when we moved, we moved BIG. If we had delayed even another year, it might have been impossible to catch up. Second, if you are building on-premises IaaS, you really need to think about why. Especially if you are doing OpenStack or any other “do it yourself” scenarios. I’ve helped many customers do this on the Microsoft platform over the years and now with CPS and some of the other appliance based scenarios, if you NEED on-premises IaaS//PaaS (as opposed to “want”) then there are options that make sense. But I see a lot of customers doing this just because that’s what they think they know how to do.
That’s it for this short week. Did you see any other articles that were interesting this week?