The Windows Azure Cloud platform

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Upcoming sessions

Learning Goals

Windows Azure is an open and flexible cloud platform that enables you to quickly build, deploy and manage applications across a global network of managed datacenters. It provides on-demand infrastructure that scales and adapts to your changing business needs. This course will cover all web, mobile, data, mobile, infrastructure... solutions offered by Windows Azure. This course provides participants with technical guidelines on design, implementing, hosting and managing cloud-based application making participants skillful and ready for action.

Target Audience

This course is indented for professional  programmers experienced with Visual Studio and .NET who are interested to learn both the infrastructure as the development solutions in Windows Azure.


Participants should have a good understanding of building web applications with the .NET Framework.

Course Outline

Day 1 - 2: Infrastructure As A Service

Overview Windows Azure for IT Pros

Windows Azure can really benefit your business by providing access to resources in the cloud and reducing costs at the same time. Windows Azure provides high availability, backup and SLAs for your cloud-based infrastructure.

  • Overview of Windows Azure
  • Usage Scenarios
  • Software as a Service (SaaS)
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS)
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
  • Pricing
  • SLA

Managing Windows Azure with PowerShell

PowerShell is the command-line tool to manage all your Windows servers and applications. Even when they are stored in Windows Azure. PowerShell can be used to connect to and manage your subscription.

  • Overview of Windows PowerShell
  • Connect to Azure with PowerShell
  • Manage your Windows Azure subscription with PowerShell

Virtual Machines

With virtual machines you have access to a scalable computing infrastructure on demand when you quickly need to create new environments to fulfil the growing needs of your organization. Windows Azure provides a set of predefined Windows and Linux operating systems in different configurations to get you started. You can also upload your own VHDs and start from there.

  • Virtual Machines
  • Creating a VM based on a template
  • Uploading and using your own VM
  • Setting up a web server
  • Setting up a SharePoint environment

High Availability and Load Balancing

In Windows Azure you have the option to configure your VMs as highly available virtual machines, making sure that a failure of a datacenter component does not affect your access to the VMs. Load balancing can be configured to provide high availability and network load balancing to your web services.

  • Load balancing in Windows Azure
  • High availability in Windows Azure

Virtual Networking

Using Virtual Networking in Windows Azure you can easily and safely connect your cloud infrastructure to your local datacenter using a private IPSec connection. By configuring Virtual Networking you can access local data and applications, including Windows Server systems, Unix systems and mainframes.

  • Windows Azure Connect
  • Traffic Manager

Identity – Windows Azure Active Directory

Windows Azure AD is a modern, REST-based service that offers possibilities for identity and access control for your cloud environment. You can now use only one identity service for Windows Azure, Microsoft Office 365, Dynamics CRM Online and Windows Intune. Windows Azure AD is an identity provider in the cloud that can easily be integrated with your local Active Directory environment.

  • Windows Azure AD
  • Integration with on-premises AD
  • Windows Azure AD Graph
  • Single Sign-On

Identity – Directory Synchronization

With Directory Synchronization you can synchronize your on-premises AD accounts to Windows Azure. The new DirSync tool supports both User and Password synchronization to Windows Azure AD.

  • Directory Synchronization
  • Password Synchronization

Identity – Federation

To provide Single Sign-On experiences for your users between on-premises and Windows Azure AD environments, you can enable federation. Users will need to remember only one username and password and are automatically signed in to the online environment with their AD account.

  • What is federation?
  • Federation Scenarios
  • Configuring federation between on-prem AD and Azure AD with ADFS

Day 3 - 5: Developing cloud based applications

The Cloud application skeleton

So what does a Cloud based application look like? You will learn about the design guidelines you need to follow to build scalable application hosted on the Azure platform.

  • Building applications for scalability, manageability and availability
  • Development experience for building Cloud based applications
  • Web Roles and Worker Roles
  • Worker role communication
  • Packaging and deploying your applications to the Cloud
  • Using Azure Connect and Remote Desktop
  • Installing additional requirements using Startup Tasks
  • Debugging your code in the cloud

Creating Azure Web Sites

  • Using the Web Site Gallery
  • Deploying from visual studio
  • Deploying from Team Foundation Server and Git
  • Free, shared or reserved web sites
  • Monitoring your website
  • Auto-scaling your website
  • Creating scheduled WebJobs
  • Backup your website
  • Securing your sites using Azure AD

Storing your data in the Cloud

How can you handle data in the Cloud? We will compare the different technologies available and their API.

  • The advantages of storing data in the Cloud
  • Windows Azure Storage Overview
  • Working with asynchronous Windows Azure Queues
  • Working with Windows Azure Tables
  • Storing files in Azure Blobs
  • Using the Content Delivery Network
  • Transient Caching using Local Storage
  • Windows Azure Import/Export service

Using the Service Bus

In this module students will learn the benefits of the Service Bus. You will learn how the Service Bus can help you in connecting your local or Cloud services and applications.

  • What type of connectivity problems is the Service Bus addressing?
  • How to connect services on the internet?
  • Using the Relaying Service
  • Exploring the Service Registry
  • Looking at the different Relay Bindings
  • Building highly scalable and reliable systems with Queues
  • Discovering the Direct/Hybrid Relay
  • Working with the Cache Service
  • Service Bus Topics and Subscriptions

Logging and monitoring your Cloud applications

Once you Cloud applications are deployed you would like to monitor and log the behavior of your application. In this session we will look at the different options and tools provide by the Windows Azure Platform to analyze the health of your application and track possible problems

  • Enabling Azure diagnostics
  • Working with the Eventlog
  • Tracking activity with performance pointers
  • Tracing the IIS logs
  • How to transfer diagnostic data to Azure Storage?

SQL Azure

This module will introduce you into SQL Azure, the Cloud based relational database service part of the Windows Azure Platform. You will learn about the benefits of SQL Azure and look at the similarities and differences with SQL Server.

  • SQL Azure feature set
  • The SQL Azure gateway
  • How to connect to SQL Azure?
  • Migrating data to SQL Azure
  • SQL Azure Data Sync
  • SQL Azure Export

Windows Azure Mobile Services

  • Create Mobile services for Windows 8.1, Windows Phone 8.1, Android and iOS
  • Configuring your Azure Mobile Service
  • Configure user authentication for your mobile apps, using Microsoft Live, Facebook or Twitter
  • Sending Notifications to your Mobile apps
  • Understanding Windows Azure Notification Hubs
  • Autoscaling your Mobile Services
  • Creating custom API's
  • Setting up Scheduled Jobs
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