Luper's Learnings – Azure Technical Community for Partners (December 2015)

This is the December 2015 monthly edition of Luper’s Learnings. Happy birthday! Luper’s Learnings is a year old this month.

We hope you'll take a second to pause, listen, and share the voices of Microsoft employees and a local NYC youth choir as they share the spirit of the season.

Thank you for a terrific 2015. With November behind us and just a few weeks remaining in 2015, I can’t wait to see what 2016 will bring!

Don’t forget, I love hearing from you via Twitter, email and in person. I hope that everybody has a very productive and “cloudy” rest of the work year. If you are taking time off for any holidays that you may celebrate, best wishes to you and your families. I’ll be taking a bit of time to spend with my family at the end of December but will be right back here with a New Year’s edition of Luper’s Learnings in early January shortly followed by some time spent with partners in New Zealand and Australia in the second half of January. Reach out to me if you are in that area and would like to connect.

If you received this directly from me then you are on my list and you will continue receiving my Learnings the first week of each month. If you would prefer to stop receiving it, please reply to me and I’ll remove you promptly. If somebody forwarded this email to you and you would like to begin receiving it from me directly each month, just email me at luperslearnings (at)  

Here are topics I’ve run across and my Learnings from the last month…

  •  I usually try to constrain myself to news from the previous month but I’m acknowledging that I’ll fail at that right now since Leon Welicki announced yesterday that the Azure Portal,, is Generally Available! I know that you’ll read the entire post but my first question was “Are you done with the portal?” Leon answers this at the bottom of his post saying “No, not at all! It is important to mention that general availability does not mean that our commitment to improving user experience, quality and agility will be reduced. On the contrary, we will keep innovating and improving at an even faster pace than we have been in the past. Our top priorities remain the same:
    • Bring all services to the new portal
    • Continue improving performance and reliability
    • Continue improving the user experience and usability based on your feedback”
  • This week we announced Azure SDK 2.8.1 for Visual Studio 2013 and Visual Studio 2015. This SDK update offers some great new features for Azure App Service developers to complement the new release of App Service API Apps and general availability of Mobile Apps .NET server SDK.
  • The Cloud Platform Roadmap site launched in February and I told you about it again in May and in July. Over the past couple of months, I had partners ping me and tell me that it was out of date. I checked it out over the recent weeks and noticed that there are some good updates in the Recently Available and Public Preview sections so it would be worth another look if you get a chance.
  • My colleagues Frank, Nick and Jonathan keep Azure partners in the US updated via the US Partner Community blog. In a three-part series in November, Nick and Jonathan talk about offerings in Azure that help provide business continuity and disaster recovery solutions. Read Part 1, Part 2 – Updates to Azure Site Recovery, and Part 3 – Updates to Azure Backup.
  • Did you happen to hear? Microsoft announced plans to offer cloud services including Azure from both German and UK datacenters beginning in late 2016.
  • On 30 November we introduced Microsoft PowerApps. PowerApps is an enterprise service for innovators everywhere to connect, create and share business apps on any device in minutes. For employees -- quickly create apps that work on any device using a Microsoft Office-like experience, use built-in connections, or custom built ones to connect PowerApps to cloud services such as Office 365, Dynamics CRM, Salesforce, Dropbox and OneDrive and on-premises systems including SharePoint, SQL Server, Oracle databases, SAP and more. PowerApps includes Azure App Service for employee-facing apps, so native web and mobile apps get into employee hands faster than ever.
  • In early November, Igor Pagliai blogged about Azure VM Resizing and SKU Change in ASM and ARM. He talks about the rules around transitioning between SKUs, using various VM sizes and storage options.
  • Rik Hepworth, a Microsoft MVP with UK partner Black Marble blogs from time to time about Azure topics. In November he posted Convert new VM’s dynamic IP address to static with Azure Resource Templates
  • Jos De Bruijn, Senior Program Manager let us know that Azure SQL Database In-Memory OLTP and Real-Time Operational Analytics now in Public Preview. He says that “with In-Memory OLTP in Azure SQL Database, you can achieve faster performance and scale to a larger number of users, while continuing to benefit from Azure DB scaling and availability guarantees.”
  • Speaking of Azure SQL DB, you may have heard it discussed at Ignite in Chicago in May. Torsten Grabs announced the preview of Elastic Database Transactions with Azure SQL Database. Distributed transactions have consistently ranked among the most requested features for SQL Database. You can now perform operations across several databases in SQL Database with transactional properties. This enables the same guarantees that you are familiar with in SQL Server when using Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator (MSDTC).
  • In a mid-November 30 minute episode of Data Exposed, Stuart Padley, Group Program Manager and Miso Cilimdzic, Principal Software Engineering Manager give us a first look at Azure SQL Data Warehouse, Microsoft's fully-managed, scalable, data warehouse service.
  • A week doesn’t go by when I’m not asked about customers trusting their data to Azure and Microsoft data centers. In November, Brad Smith, Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer posted an in depth discussion called In the Cloud We Trust. It’s a great read covering many angles and really describing a timeline of 2015, Microsoft’s position on data in the cloud, events that are influencing data security, thoughts on content restrictions and more.
  • Our emphasis on security marches forward as Takeshi Numoto, Corporate Vice President announced that Microsoft will acquire Secure Islands, a leader in data protection technology
  • In Luper’s Learnings I regularly mention Ignite which was held in Chicago this past May and will be held in Atlanta in September 2016. I haven’t really spent any time talking about Ignite Australia which was held in November. Alessandro Cardoso, Microsoft MVP Cloud and Datacentre Management tells us why he loved attending Ignite Australia.
  • Transactional Replication to Azure SQL DB now in public preview according to Jean-Yves (JY) Devant, Senior Program Manager. This allows you to configure Azure SQL DB as a subscriber of SQL Server Transactional Replication.
  • A few months ago I made sure to remind you that Microsoft Loves Linux (including sharing the famous picture of CEO Satya Nadella with the below slide behind him.)

  • There are still 14 Azure Tour stops coming up before mid-March (including the Paris and Singapore events next week.) I’ve provided you with the full schedule & registration information below.
  • Full details on the tour are at Here are the upcoming dates and direct registration links for your convenience.






7 December 2015



7 and 8 December 2015


Washington DC

11 January 2016



14 January 2016


Sao Paulo

19 and 20 January 2016


Los Angeles

26 and 27 January 2016


Mexico City

2 and 3 February 2016



22 and 23 February 2016



25 and 26 February 2016



26 February 2016



29 February and 1 March 2016



1 March 2016



3 and 4 March 2016


Hong Kong

10 and 11 March 2016



Thanks for sticking with me and making it to the bottom of the December Luper’s Learnings. I’d love your input for topics for the January edition let me know what they are!


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