Cloud Platform Release Announcements for August 8, 2018

Azure Virtual Machines | Azure reserved instance size flexibility

Pricing Linux | Pricing Windows | Azure Reserved VM Instances Webpage

We recently introduced instance size flexibility—a new feature that’s applicable to all existing and new Azure Reserved Virtual Machine (VM) Instance purchases.

Instance size flexibility can:

  • Simplify the management of Azure Reserved VM Instances.
  • Avoid the need to exchange or cancel a reserved instance to apply its benefit to other virtual machines within the same Azure Reserved Instance VM group and region.
  • Help you further reduce costs in many scenarios.
  • Automatically apply Azure Reserved Instance benefits that have been purchased to other VMs within the same group and region.

Instance size flexibility applies to both Windows and Linux Azure Virtual Machines. For general information regarding this new feature please visit the Azure Reserved VM Instances webpage. Also read the engineering blog or the documentation for a more comprehensive overview.

Azure Management Groups | GA

We recently announced the general availability of Azure Management Groups, a free Azure service that allows our you to organize subscriptions and apply governance controls such as Azure Policy and Role-Based Access Controls (RBAC) through hierarchical structures. This service is fully integrated on the Azure platform and enables policy-based governance at scale by allowing you to group subscriptions and other management groups to form a hierarchy.

Use Management Groups to reduce your workload and the risk of error by avoiding duplicate assignments. Instead of applying multiple assignments across numerous resources and subscriptions, apply the one assignment on the one management group that contains the target resources. This will save time in the application of assignments, create one point for maintenance, and allow for better controls on who can control the assignment.

To learn more, read the full blog post.

Azure security and operations management | Tips on hardening security with Azure Security

On the latest episode of Microsoft Mechanics, you’ll see how the Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center is helping to secure Azure and the global security landscape. The Threat Intelligence Center mitigates attacks that target the Azure platform, and that intelligence is fed back into our services for increased protection,

Watch the episode to see how to strengthen your organizational security using these tools.

Azure Database Migration Service | Save project and run activity

The Azure Database Migration Service now supports the ability to create a migration project and perform a specific migration activity, for example offline migration, in a single workflow. This new capability reduces the number of steps required to perform migrations when using DMS.

Learn more about Azure Database Migration Service.

Azure Database Migration Service | Support for using existing backup files for migration

The Azure Database Migration Service now supports the ability to create a migration project and perform a specific migration activity, for example offline migration, in a single workflow. This new capability reduces the number of steps required to perform migrations when using DMS.

Learn more about Azure Database Migration Service.

Azure SQL Database | Save up to 80 percent with reserved capacity and Azure hybrid benefit

Save up to 80 percent with reserved capacity and Azure hybrid benefit

Azure SQL Database reserved capacity is now available for single and elastic pool databases, expanding our commitment to making Azure the most cost-effective cloud for your workloads. This new pricing option saves you up to 33 percent compared to license-included pricing by pre-paying for your SQL Database vCores for a one-year or three-year term. Save up to 80 percent when you combine reserved capacity savings with Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server. Improve your budgeting and forecasting with a single upfront payment, making it easy to calculate your investments.

Learn more.

Linux on App Service Environment | Now generally available

Linux on App Service Environment is now generally available. This feature allows our Linux and containers users to deploy their apps into a subnet of an Azure Virtual Network. This means that you can bring your code and use one of our built-in Linux images, or just bring your own container.

Linux, containerized, and Windows apps can now be deployed in the same App Service Environment. Use an internet-accessible or internal endpoint to deploy your App Service Environment to access resources in your Virtual Network, as well as to take advantage of higher scaling capabilities. Also, we have now expanded Linux on App Service Environment to all App Service regions.

Learn more here, and get started with this quick start.

Azure App Service | App Service Windows Container in preview

Windows Server container support in App Service is now available in preview. Push your Windows container image to Docker Hub, Azure Container Registry, or a private registry, and deploy your containerized app to App Service. This feature enables a straightforward way to migrate .NET applications to Windows containers and run on Azure through a lift-and-shift straight to PaaS approach. Migration scenarios involving applications with dependencies or the need to include custom components in a multitenant environment would also benefit from the Window server container support. Now available in select regions in preview.

Learn more.

Ethereum Proof-of-Authority on Azure

We recently announced the release of Ethereum Proof-of-Authority on Azure, a new template on the Azure Marketplace that allows you to quickly configure and deploy a blockchain network using a PoA consensus approach.

Unlike Proof of Work, which uses computation costs to self-regulate the network and allow fair participation, Proof-of-Authority has a more relaxed consensus approach more suitable for permissioned networks where participants are known and reputable. Without the need for mining, Proof-of-Authority is more efficient while still retaining Byzantine fault tolerance, and it has transaction speeds up to 100 times faster than public Ethereum.

To learn more read the full blog post.