New enhancements for Windows Azure Infrastructure Services and Web Sites, and added new BizTalk Services


WindowsAzure_LogoThis is an update for new and existing customers of Windows Azure, Today Microsoft released new enhancements for Windows Azure Infrastructure Services and Web Sites, and added new BizTalk Services.

Infrastructure Services: new options and new features

True cloud economics with per-minute billing

Starting June 3, 2013, Windows Azure Virtual Machines, web roles, and worker roles are billed by the minute rather than by the hour. Microsoft SQL Server and BizTalk Server running in Virtual Machines are also billed by the minute. You will pay for what you use instead of rounding up to the nearest hour.

Additional security option for Virtual Machines: public endpoint access control lists

We added a security option so that you can control inbound traffic to your virtual machines. Define how traffic from outside of your corporate firewall communicates with your Virtual Machine public endpoints through PowerShell and soon at the management portal. Public Endpoint ACLs put additional security controls at your fingertips. You are in charge!

More options for building your security-enabled private connection to Windows Azure

By using Windows Azure Virtual Network, you can retain select data and apps on-premises and connect them to your cloud through a security-enabled private connection. Starting June 3, you have even more device options for setting up your site-to-site connection. Virtual Network now supports integration with WatchGuard, F5, and Citrix virtual private network (VPN) devices, in addition to Cisco and Juniper.

If you prefer a software-based VPN solution, recent enhancements to site-to-site connectivity enable you to use Windows Server 2012 Routing and Remote Access Server (RRAS) as an on-premises VPN server. Windows Azure gives you the flexibility to use either software-based or hardware-based VPN solutions.

Preview of SSL for sites hosted on Windows Azure Web Sites Reserved instances with custom domain names

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) helps you secure traffic to your sites with custom domain names hosted on Windows Azure Web Sites.

What is SSL?

SSL is a key piece of technology for companies that want to do business on the web and is used to help secure traffic between the website and the browser. We are announcing support for SNI-based and IP-based SSL certificates for Web Sites Reserved instances. SNI is supported by most modern browsers in use today. SNI-based SSL allows websites without a dedicated IP address, which is a key feature for websites hosted in cloud environments. IP-based SSL works in all browsers. For more information on SSL, please refer to the Web Sites Services webpage.

What does SSL cost?

Refer to the table below for SNI-based and IP-based SSL preview and general availability pricing. For additional pricing information, please see the Pricing Details webpage.

How to enable and use SSL

1.    Purchase an SSL certificate from a certificate authority or locate an existing SSL certificate for your website.

2.    Navigate to the Windows Azure Management Portal.

3.    In the Scale Tab, scale your website to reserved mode (if you have not already done so).

4.    In the Configure tab, Click “Manage Domains” and set up your custom domain name.

5.    In the Configure tab upload the SSL certificate.

6.    Then, explicitly enable SSL.

BizTalk Services preview: integrate the cloud and the enterprise

By using Windows Azure BizTalk Services, you can integrate your Windows Azure services, software as a service, and on-premises applications easily though a configuration-driven experience.

BizTalk Services helps you manage your trading partners with rich Electronic Data Interchange capabilities. You can connect any cloud endpoint to on-premises line-of-business systems using ready-to-go adapters for SAP, Oracle, SQL Server, and PeopleSoft. You can do all this in an on-demand, security-enabled, and dedicated environment.

With the drag-and-drop interface, you can build integration message flows to receive messages from various sources (such as HTTP, FTP, SFTP, and REST), validate and transform them to destination formats, and route the messages to endpoints in the cloud or on-premises.

How to get started

1.    In the Windows Azure Management Portal, in the bottom left corner, click NEW.

2.    Under APP SERVICES, click BIZTALK SERVICE.

3.    Click CUSTOM CREATE, and then follow the steps.

Windows Azure BizTalk Services is available in Developer, Basic, Standard, and Premium offerings. Refer to the table below for BizTalk Services preview and general availability pricing. For additional pricing information, please see the Pricing Details webpage.

Thanks,

Windows Azure Team

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