How can I get started with Azure Machine Learning?

  This was a question from a university researcher in the Pacific northwest. The good news is our Azure Machine Learning or Azure ML is a powerful native Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering which has been around since 2015.   I put together a FAQ around Azure ML: What is our definition of Machine Learning?…

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New managed disk storage option for your Azure VMs

  Available this week there is a new simplified and optimized storage option for your Azure virtual machine called managed disks.  There are several advantages of managed disks vs. unmanaged disks with storage accounts. Here are a few: Elimination of manual Storage Account management for Azure VMs Elimination of 20,000 IOPS Storage Account limit 8…

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How can you associate your Office 365 Azure AD to an existing Azure Subscription?

  This was a question from an education customer in the southwest.  They had been using Azure for about two years in production and now were standing up Office 365 and Azure AD  with AAD Connect associated to an existing EOP Azure AD tenant.  The customer question became how can you join an existing Azure…

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Changing VM Sizes in Azure

  I had a few customers ask me if they could really move up and down in Azure VM SKU types dynamically so I put together a quick FAQ and Best practices to help make this clear:  Best practices:  1) Build big and start small – Determine what size of VM you may need in…

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Oracle Workloads on Azure

Workload Azure Target Guidance Oracle Database Linux or Windows VMs Oracle Database can be installed, on the same OS and closest equivalent VM size, on Azure as currently running on-premise. If Oracle is running on bare metal in on-premise then some overhead needs to be added as Azure is a virtualized env. Most customers use…

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Azure Site Recovery Video Series

Our education customers across the country put forth a significant effort to ensure their environments are resilient, highly available, and protected from data loss. They most commonly achieve this using backup software combined with offsite tape storage, or replication of their backups to Azure for long term storage. Often, however, I hear stories of organizations…

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Introduction to Azure Enterprise and Subscription Management

Posted on behalf of Monica Reynolds, Azure Principal Solution Specialist, US-EDU Setting up Azure for your organization to deploy workloads in the cloud requires an understanding of azure management principals, tools, and best practices. In the below series, I discuss the following: Video 1: How to activate your Azure services, define your admin roles, and…

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How can I use Azure AD Domain Services?

  Several of my education customers have deployed domain controllers running in Azure.  They are asking how can they leverage a less complex approach for providing on premises Active Directory services to Azure hosted applications and Azure VMs. The good news is we just launched Azure AD Domain Services (Azure AD DS) to help with…

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The Power of JSON Templates

Creating templates is a powerful way to quickly deploy environments in Azure.  There are many use cases including student labs, environments that need to be duplicated across testing, QA, and production, and in the example outlined below, an environment to support a specific solution or application.  Benefits of deploying templates include the speed of deployment,…

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How do I start learning or using Azure?

A question that gets asked very often…and you are not the first or only one! There are several options to get started, 30-day trial is just one but perhaps you are looking for more. The options are constrained by the authentication protocols required for an organization i.e. using work identity or personal/Microsoft account to access…

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How can I connect my premises or data center to my Azure subscription?

Network Architecture between your Institution premises or data center to your Azure subscription There are 2 key elements of the network architecture, however, it is imperative to understand that private peering is primarily required for IaaS based services and for strict compliance reasons around data security. Most PaaS and SaaS services provide data access over RESTful…

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Deploy ADFS Infrastructure In Azure

One of the most common scenarios that customers are asking to learn about is the deployment of an ADFS infrastructure in Azure.  There are a number of benefits to deploying this infrastructure in Azure including the ability to offload incoming traffic to an Azure endpoint, providing a highly-available solution that is protected from DDOS attacks,…

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ExpressRoute common customer questions answered

  I was asked by a higher education customer in Arizona some questions about ExpressRoute for their Azure subscriptions so I posted them here:     ExpressRoute circuit diagram showing Azure Public, Azure Private peering and Microsoft peering to other Microsoft cloud services like Intune, CRM Online, Office 365, etc..   Can you have both…

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Azure Bootcamp Workshops

  As a new CSA I got to attend Cloud Bootcamp in Seattle couple of weeks back. The highlight of the bootcamp for me were the workshops and hackathons. The 4 workshops I did were around coming up with solution architectures for – 1) Lift & Shift – Moving a procurement application to Cloud while…

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Deciphering Performance levels and DTUs for a single Azure SQL DB

  I was asked by a higher education customer in the southwest to explain the various Azure SQL Database tiers and levels, what DTUs are, how long does it take to move performance levels, and what type of outage occurs when using a single database Azure SQL DB?  They had a single 210GB on premises…

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