Step-By-Step: Deploying Blackberry Enterprise Service on Azure via Azure Marketplace


BlackBerry Enterprise Service (BES) has come a long way from is initial closed offering of strictly managing devices built by BlackBerry themselves.  Now supporting iOS, Android and Windows, BlackBerry’s server offering extends said offering across existing deployments of BlackBerry devices.

Enter Azure Marketplace, a tool created for IT Professionals to quickly deploy templates of services on Azure and can be used to quicken the deployment of the BlackBerry Enterprise Service as per the requirements of an organization. This allows system administrators to quickly deploy BES for use of testing or adoption of DevOps best practices to enable developers to create solutions upon the staged environment. The following video, filmed at the BlackBerry Waterloo, Ontario campus alongside their Senior Solutions Architect Ed Bourne, walks through the simple deployment of said service on Azure:

Steps to follow along with are detailed below.

  1. Sign into the Azure portal at either:
     
    1. sign up for the free 30 day trial of Azure 
       
    2. using your existing Azure subscription
       
  2. Click the New (+) button, and select Marketplace
     
  3. Find the BlackBerry Enterprise Services Dev/Test Trial image by using the search/filter to quicken discovery of the BES service and click create
     
  4. Enter the details required for the setup of the VM said BES installation will be deployed on
     
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  5. Select DS3 Standard VM size
     
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    NOTE: Windows Server 2012 VM on a DS3 will take 5 minutes to configure itself and start up for the first time at this point.
     
  6. Connect to the VM using an RDP client via Remote Desktop from your PC once the VM starts. Use the username and password created in Basics to login to the VM.
     
  7. Select Just Configure BES…
     
    NOTE:
    This Step-By-Step will focus on quickly setting up BES on Azure.  Steps detailing configuration of BES against an Active Directory Forest will be penned in a future post
     
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    NOTE: The installation will reboot the VM after a minute or two to finish the process.
     
  8. The following desktop will appear once you log back in with RDP
     
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    NOTE: A Read Me document will open in Internet Explorer automatically.  Read the notes for the latest news surrounding the latest version of BES.
     

  9. Click the here to request a BES12 60 day trial.
     
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  10. Check your inbox for an email containing a link to the download page.  Click the link take note of the SRPID and Activation key for BES12. 
     
  11. Click on the BES admin management console URL.
     
  12. Ignore the error below by selecting Continue to this Website
     
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  13. Click Continue and agree to accept the warning after the BES has completed its install.

    NOTE: During the install the BES creates a self-signed certificate for all HTTPS connections, which your server is not familiar with.  Hence the warning.
     
  14. Enter the user name/password defaults to admin/password in the standard BES 12 admin screen
     
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  15. Choose country location.
     
  16. Enter the organization that will be associated with the newly setup BES and the SRPID and SRP key recorded in step 10. 

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    NOTE: The BES is now operational. RDP can still be used to manage BES however it can now also be administered via a web browser. The next steps will utilize the web browser.
     
  17. Connect to the admin console via the web browser using the same IP address used to connect via RDP. 
     
    NOTE: Be sure to use https not http to connect.  IE: https://40.76.xx.xx/admin/index.jsp
     
  18. Navigate to the licensing page to enter test device licenses.
     
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  19. Click on Activate licenses and enter the info supplied by your trial request in step 10
     
  20. Navigate to Users and Devices and click on add user.
     
  21. Complete the required fields for the new user however select set device password under device activation
     

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  22. Press Save after all fields are completed

     
  23. On your BlackBerry 10 device navigate to Settings > Accounts > Email/calendars and contacts to provide the email address you entered along with the device activation password. 
     
    NOTE: BES will list all completed users once the device is activated and the workspace is created
     

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