Architecting a Microsoft Private Cloud

The first part of a four-part article series titled Architecting a Microsoft Private Cloud, by myself and my colleague Adam Fazio (@adamfazio) has been published in TechNet Magazine here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/hh127072.aspx Microsoft Services has designed, built and implemented a Private Cloud/IaaS reference implementation using Windows Server, Hyper-V and System Center. Our goal throughout this four-part series will be…

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From Virtualization to Dynamic IT

Issue 24 of the Microsoft Architecture Journal focuses on virtualization. My paper, From Virtualization to Dynamic IT, has been published in this issue. My thesis: Virtualization is a critical infrastructure-architecture layer that is required for achieving higher IT-maturity levels, but several others layers—such as automation, management, and orchestration—are equally important. For the last several months…

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The Year Ahead

What is a dynamic datacenter? How does a dynamic datacenter enable private cloud computing and fit within a long term, enterprise cloud strategy? What can be achieved now with Microsoft and partner solutions while laying the ground work for future product and service waves? These questions and many more like them will be my focus…

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Private Clouds: Believe it or not?

Recently there has been some healthy debate around the validity of “private clouds” and whether such a construct is new or just a different name for virtualization and automated provisioning, i.e. a marketecture. In this corner for the anti-Private Cloud sentiment, we have the 2009 Prediction – Rise and Fall of the Private Cloud which…

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Cloud Computing: Taxes Analogous to Atmospheric Pressure

In a blog posting earlier this week, the Azure team announced that they would be moving all Azure applications out of our “USA – Northwest” datacenter. I was fascinated by this given that the stated reason for this move is a change in local tax law which presumably make it less financially attractive to offer…

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Completing 5 days of Forefront Protection Suite (Stirling) Training

Last week I came out to Redmond for 5 days of training on the Forefront Protection Suite, formerly Forefront codenamed “Stirling”. The final name was announced at the Worldwide Partner Conference: Forefront codename “Stirling” – the next generation of the Forefront Security Suite for integrated,  comprehensive protection across endpoints, servers and the edge – will…

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Excellent Data Center Article in the NY Times Magazine

The New York Times magazine has a very interesting article by Tom Vanderbilt on datacenters and the infrastructures that power today’s online services. Several Microsoft (and former Microsoft) execs were interviewed including Mike Manos, Debra Chrapaty, Daniel Costello, etc. The article ends with a very insightful comment by Mike Manos: “We’re at the beginning of…

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White Paper: Comparing the Power Utilization of Native and Virtual Exchange Environments

The Exchange team has published a whitepaper on TechNet comparing the power utilization of a typical 8 server physical Exchange environment compared to a a virtualized environment using the same number of logical processors but on only two Hyper-V host servers. The result: a 50% reduction in power usage (excluding storage). If storage is included…

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Updated: Introducing the Azure Services Platform

The main introductory whitepaper to the Azure platform written by David Chappell has been updated. The main updates are around SQL Data Services and the move toward a more relational model and the introduction of something code-named the “Huron” data hub which uses the Microsoft Sync Framework to synchronize multiple databases (SQL, SQL Compact, etc)…

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Clustering SQL Server Virtual Machines

When planning server consolidation initiatives, particularly if using a structured offering and tools like SVAM and MAP, underutilized database servers are a frequent consolidation candidate. Similarly, if you have already widely implemented virtualization, then virtualizing database servers for new software deployments is also a common desire. As you consolidate and create more VMs, high availability…

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