Early Experts Study Guide for Microsoft Specialist Certification Exam 70-534, Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions

  Disclaimer: This exam study guide is not intended as a replacement for formal training on Microsoft Azure. This exam study guide is intended as a study reference tool to assist experienced architects with preparing for Microsoft Specialist certification via Exam 70-534, Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions. Exam 70-534 is one of three exams that can…


Leveraging the Azure Service Management REST API with Azure Active Directory and PowerShell / List Azure Administrators

The Azure Service Management REST API can be a great compliment to the Azure PowerShell module when automating certain Azure cloud tasks for which there's not yet a defined set of PowerShell cmdlets.  In previous articles, we've leveraged this API for specific scenarios, such as: Configuring health monitoring alert rules for Azure VMs Listing current…


Extending SQL Server 2014 AlwaysOn Resource Groups with Storage Spaces on Microsoft Azure

The new Azure Preview Portal makes it super-easy to configure a highly available SQL Server 2014 AlwaysOn Availability Group cluster with a new Azure Resource Group Template.  After completing 4 fields of information and clicking a single Create button, a complete cluster environment including an Azure Storage Account, Virtual Network, Active Directory Domain Controllers and…


Diagnose Azure Virtual Network VPN connectivity issues with PowerShell

Azure Virtual Network Gateways provide a great solution for quickly building secure cross-premises network connectivity for a Hybrid Cloud via IPsec site-to-site VPN tunnels. However, VPN tunnels can sometimes be a bit tricky to configure with certain on-premises VPN gateways.  When the VPN tunnel isn't able to connect between Azure and your on-premises gateway device…


Step-by-Step: Revoking and Reinstating Client VPN Certificates for Azure Point-to-Site VPNs

Microsoft Azure provides Point-to-Site VPN (aka. Client VPN) connectivity for secure remote access by development and operations teams to cloud-based workloads that are provisioned on an Azure Virtual Network.  Azure Point-to-Site VPN connectivity uses SSTP as a firewall-friendly tunneling protocol and certificates for mutual authentication of each client connection. You can find more details on…


Quick Tip: List Current Client Connections on Azure Point-to-Site VPN with PowerShell and REST API

Microsoft Azure provides secure access to cloud-based VMs for developers and IT operations teams via Point-to-Site VPN (aka. Client VPN) connectivity.  This solution uses SSTP (Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol) to provide a secure, firewall-friendly solution that uses the native VPN client built-in with Windows 7 and later.  In a future article, we'll also look at…


Step-by-Step: Automated Provisioning for Linux in the Cloud with Microsoft Azure, XPlat CLI, JSON and Node.js ( Part 2 )

There's lots of tools that can be leveraged for automating Linux workloads on Microsoft Azure, including Azure Automation, PowerShell DSC for Linux, VM Agent Custom Scripts, Cloud-Init, XPlat CLI for Azure, Vagrant, Docker and third-party tools such as Chef and Puppet.  Azure provides a wide variety of automation options so that you can choose the…


Step-by-Step: Automated Provisioning for Linux in the Cloud with Microsoft Azure, XPlat CLI, JSON and Node.js ( Part 1 )

Since previously publishing the Quick Start Guide for Building Highly Available Linux Servers in the Cloud on Microsoft Azure, several people have asked me about ways in which Linux workload provisioning can be automated with Azure. There's lots of tools that can be leveraged for automating Linux workloads on Microsoft Azure, including Azure Automation, PowerShell…


Deck and Resources: SQL Server Options in the Cloud with Microsoft Azure

Thanks for attending my presentation today at the Columbus SQLPASS User Group chapter on SQL Server Options in the Cloud with Microsoft Azure. We discussed various hybrid cloud options for leveraging Microsoft Azure as part of a SQL Server deployment, including the following scenarios: Off-site cloud backups for databases and logs Disaster recovery of on-premises…


Quick Tip: Listing all IaaS VMs or PaaS Roles on an Azure Virtual Network via PowerShell

When managing Microsoft Azure Virtual Networks via the Azure Management Portal, we can easily see a list of IaaS Virtual Machines and/or PaaS web/worker roles that are connected to a particular virtual network, as shown below. List of resources connected to Azure Virtual Network via Management Portal Question: How can I determine this same type…