Azure DevOps: Deploy a Windows Server with a DevOps Pipeline and Key Vault

Azure Pipeline Logo

In this video, we go through the process of using Azure DevOps pipelines to deploy a simple Windows server with an Azure ARM template.  We add ARM templates to a repo and connect Azure DevOps to a subscription with a service principle.  We also go over connecting Azure DevOps to an Azure Key Vault and use a KeyVault secret as a password for the server’s local admin account.

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High Performance at a Low Price for WVD

In this post and accompanying video, we go over the benefits and considerations of using ephemeral disks with Azure Windows Virtual Desktop Session Hosts.  We review the performance improvements as well as limitations that come with ephemeral disks, including the inability to deallocate Session Hosts.  Next, we examine Azure Reserved Instances and how they can be used to keep the cost of Session Hosts down without using an auto scale solution.

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Networking Basics, the OSI Model

This is the first of a series of videos on Computer Networking Basics.  In this video, we go over the OSI model and how it aligns with TCP/IP.  This is the basic fundamental to understanding a computer network.

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Starting Lab Computers with Stream Deck, a Webhook, and an Azure PowerShell Function

This video is a step-by-step introduction for using an Elgato Stream Deck to send a Webhook that starts or stops computers in Azure based on their tag settings.  We go over creating the Azure Function App, setting up system assigned identities and creating a custom RBAC role in Azure to grant the identity permissions to the subscription.  Then we configure the start stop function to use values passed in from the web hook to start or stop the computers.  Finally, we configure the Elgato Stream Deck with start and stop buttons that control the lab.

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Update with Breadth-First! Auto Scale Session Hosts in Windows Virtual Desktop Spring Update (ARM) with Azure Function

I am excited to announce a significant update to the Auto Start and Stop script for WVD.  This update adds a new option that works with the peak time settings to change the load balancing type from Depth-First to Breadth-First.  When used, it also starts all available session hosts during peak time to accommodate the user load. 

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Azure Automanage now in Public Preview

In this post and accompanying video, we go over Azure Automanage.  Automanage is an Azure solution to automate management of IaaS servers within the Cloud Adoption Frameworks best practices.  This post gives an overview of the services.  The video reviews the service and provides a demonstration of on-boarding a server.  After that, we go on to review settings on a server that is part of Azure Automanage.

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