Best Practices for Updating Virtual Machines in Microsoft Azure IaaS Deployments


imageCloud computing changes the landscape when it comes to infrastructure updates. In our on-premises datacenters, you have to update everything yourself. You’re responsible for all of it. Applications, routers, switches, operating systems, firewalls, you name it – you’re responsible for making sure all of it is updated.

With the cloud, there’s a new division of responsibility, and how that responsibility is divided depends on the cloud service model you’re using.

For example, check out the graphic below.

Cloud models and responsabilities

Starting on the far right with software as a service, there’s really not that much you’re responsible for – the cloud service provider takes care of just about everything for you. With Platform as a Service, you’re responsible for managing your data and applications – which means applying any security updates to your applications. When you get to Infrastructure as a Service, you’re responsible for the operating system, middleware, runtime, data and applications. You need to apply updates in all those areas.

For Infrastructure as a Service, most likely your biggest task is going to be updating the operating systems. What are the best practices? What are the differences between how you do this on-premises and how you do it in Azure IaaS?

To answer those questions, we’ve put together the article Best Practices for software updates on Microsoft Azure IaaS.

In that article you’ll see how to:

  • Perform an initial assessment
  • Establish a baseline
  • Subscribe to the appropriate software update notification services
  • And more!

If you’re already using Azure Virtual Machines, please let us know if this guidance is helpful to you and what you want to see more of. Just add a comment at the bottom of the page and let’s talk about it.

If you’re not already using Azure Virtual Machines, the good news is that getting started with Azure Virtual Machines (Azure IaaS) is easy! If you don’t already have an Azure subscription, get an Azure Free Trial subscription. Then read the articles Create a virtual machine running Windows in the Azure portal and Create a virtual machine running Linux using the Azure portal.

Thanks!

Tom
Tom Shinder
Program Manager, Azure Security
@tshinder | Facebook | LinkedIn | Email | Web | Bing me! | GOOG me!

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