Luper's Learnings – Azure Technical Community for Partners (January 2016)




Happy New Year! Welcome to the January 2016 monthly edition of Luper’s Learnings.

I hope that everybody had a terrific holiday season and found time to spend with family and friends. I’ve been getting caught up on email, news etc. this week and have been very happy to hear from many of you over the past month via Twitter and email.

In just over a week, I’ll be traveling to Auckland & Wellington, New Zealand as well as Melbourne and Sydney, Australia to meet with partners. If you are in one of those places and we don’t already time scheduled together, please reach out and we’ll see if there’s an opportunity 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…

  • Michael Curd, Program Manager announced that AzCopy 5.0 was generally available including support for File and Table Storage.

  • Azure Resource Manager support in Azure Automation runbooks was announced by Joe Levy. Joe gives some quick examples, asks for input on specific ARM functionality you are interested in via Azure Automation and provides access to a number of related resources.

  • Rounding out the early December availability announcements, Kirill Gavrylyuk announced the general availability of App Service Mobile Apps.

  • Azure Active Directory Premium is one of the key products in Microsoft’s Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS.) Where you aware that it also includes Microsoft Intune, Azure Rights Management and more?

  • Pretty sure that I’ve talked about PowerShell lots but, in case you didn’t catch the announcement, Azure PowerShell 1.0 is available with a number of great improvements. In his post, David Justice talks about Azure PowerShell 1.0 and Azure PowerShell 0.9.x support.

  • Speaking of Microsoft Azure PowerShell, my friends at training partner Opsgility have a Microsoft Azure PowerShell Reference Guide that you might find of interest.

  • You don’t hear me talk about StorSimple too often. I figured with these two announcements in December, I had better share. First, Announcing the StorSimple Cloud Appliance 8020. It’s the next generation and is a software version of the StorSimple solution in Virtual Machine form, running in Azure. Second, the preview of the on-premises StorSimple Virtual Array. It’s a version of the StorSimple solution in a virtual machine form installed on customers’ existing hypervisors.

  • There are still 12 Azure Tour stops coming up before mid-March (including the Washington DC and Atlanta 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.




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


  • Back in June I told you a bit about Azure Internal Use Rights (IUR) for partners. I want to share a few more details on that today.

    • If your organization is a silver or gold competency partner you receive a core benefit starting at USD 100 plus Azure credits for each of the 5+ MSDN subscriptions that come with the competency. The MSDN benefit can be used for development and testing. It’s important to note that the Azure MSDN benefits and Azure IUR benefits cannot be combined.

    • Additionally, partner organizations who have earned the Cloud Platform Competency receive either USD 6,000 (silver) or USD 12,000 (gold) in annual Azure bulk credit.

    • Partners can activate Azure IURs using guidance found here.

    • Instructions to activate Azure credit from an MSDN subscription are at this blog post.

    • Full details on partner Internal Use Rights cloud and software benefit

  • The Azure Reference Architecture 1.4 was released in December with the goal of helping organizations maximize the value of Azure through development and implementation of Azure-based solutions quickly while reducing complexity and risk.

    • The Azure Reference Architecture (AZRA) combines Microsoft software and recommended guidance around compute, network and storage to support the extension of customers’ datacenter environment through the use of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) constructs.

    • The AZRA content now contains over 500 pages of real-world technical content covering core Azure architectural concepts, Cloud Service Provider (CSP) content, subscription planning requirements, implementation models, design considerations and lessons learned harvested from our top deployments.

    • AZRA 1.4 is available for partners here (requires MPN login)
  • In a discussion with a partner in early December they brought up the EU-US Safe Harbor agreement and the perception / impact with their customers. Brad Smith, Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer’s post The collapse of the US-EU Safe Harbor: Solving the new privacy Rubik’s Cube on the Microsoft on the Issues blog does an excellent job outlining Microsoft’s position on the issue, needing to keep the public safe and the complexity of privacy in a global, connected world.
  • A couple final resources for you…

Thanks for sticking with me and making it to the bottom of the January Luper’s Learnings (appreciation to Chris at New Signature for catching that I forgot to change this in December.) I’d love your input for topics for the February edition let me know what they are!


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