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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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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Auto Start and Stop Session Hosts in Windows Virtual Desktop Spring Update (ARM) Edition with an Azure Function

I am happy to release an update to my Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) Start-Stop script for Windows Virtual Desktop updated for Spring 2020, or “WVD ARM.”  This script uses an Azure Function to starts and stops WVD Session hosts in a host pool based on the user load. 

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Automatically Start and Stop WVD VM’s with Azure Automation

One value proposition of any cloud service is consumption-based pricing, only paying for services when used.  Consumption-based pricing is an advantage of Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD), Microsoft Azure-hosted remote desktop service.  Or at least it would be if there was an easy way to start and stop session hosts based on demand.

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Git and VS Code for the Lone Scripter

This is where my last two articles, Git for System Admin Scripting and Get Started with Git Remote, come together.  Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code (VS Code) is a powerful and extendable IDE.  VS Code supports Git out of the box.  It also supports many programming and scripting languages with Microsoft and 3rd party extensions.  In this article, I walk through common tasks that we have already covered, only this time with the native Git integration within VS Code.  I also review new functionality with a free 3rd party extension.

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Flow in Office 365 Vs. Logic Apps in Azure

Microsoft Flow
Azure Logic Apps

Microsoft Flow in Office 365 and Logic Apps in Azure are both options for graphically driven process automation.  With a graphical interface and a flowchart-like design, Microsoft Flow and Logic Apps make automation about as simple as it can get.  These two applications are similar but different in some important ways.  This article goes over the difference between the two to help understand the best situation to deploy each.

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