No Data in Network Overview Tile

This week I noticed an issue with no data showing in the Azure Network (Total), Network Out (Sum) and Network In (Sum) tile in the Azure Virtual Machine Overview.  I recall noticing this before but couldn’t remember how long ago that was.  Looking at other VM’s, most of my them were missing the Network Total information.  The only servers that were showing data are virtual firewall appliances.   Continue reading “No Data in Network Overview Tile”

Remote Desktop Services in Azure

Over the past few months I have had the opportunity to implement Remote Desktop Services in Azure.  The strategy of this project was to go beyond a “lift and shift” mentality of an RDS deployment to an infrastructure that will scale on demand and provide for rapid deployment of new resources as needed.  In this post I give a high-level view of the RDS services deployed and the Azure services used to support them.

Running RDS in Azure provides a high degree of availability compared to hosting in a conventional data center.  For example, Azure has native features such as Availably Sets and Load Balancing services to limit interruptions from planned and unplanned outages.  Azure also has network resilience built in.  Hosting a reliable externally available RDS environment on-premises requires redundant internet connections, BGP and underlying Routing and Switching infrastructure.  In Azure, simply provision an external IP and the rest is built in. Continue reading “Remote Desktop Services in Azure”

Recover Encrypted Windows Azure VM

Disk EncryptionThe number one rule in disaster recovery is to keep a copy of your resume off site.  Number two is test backups and recovery.  An unrecoverable backup is useless and a disaster is no time to find out something went wrong.  This is a second part of a previous post on encrypting Windows hard drive in Azure.  The first part is available here.  In this post I will go over how to backup and recover encrypted Windows Azure VM using Recovery Services Vault. Continue reading “Recover Encrypted Windows Azure VM”

Azure Disk Encryption

Disk Encryption** Updated post located here**

I deployed some VM’s using both JSON and PowerShell and enabled Storage Service Encryption to encrypt data at rest.  Now I want to enable Azure Disk Encryption (ADE) on these VM’s as an extra level of security.  In this post I will go over enabling Azure Disk Encryption with BitLocker on Windows Server.  More information on Azure Disk Encryption, including encrypting Linux can be found here.

There is a lot of information from Microsoft on configuring Disk Encryption.  Most of it covered different methods, such as PowerShell or CLI and different OS versions.  This post is sticking to the basics, encrypting existing Windows OS using the portal to get things started and PowerShell to do the encryption.  Check out this link if you want more information on Azure Encryption options. Continue reading “Azure Disk Encryption”

B-Series Azure VM’s Now Available

AzureVMI took some time off to chase fish on Lake Minnetonka this week and missed Microsoft’s announcement of Azure B-Series are now in preview.  The fish were not cooperating so I’m posting about Azure instead.  The B-Series VM significance is  their ability to “bank” CPU credits during time of low CPU usage and to use these credits during CPU spikes.  This will be helpful for test servers that may be idle during off hours or applications servers that have bursty work loads.  Any opportunity to save money without impacting performance is good news to my ears.

Next, maybe dynamic RAM allocation???


Azure RDP and Bitmap Caching

I had a problem this week when connecting to Azure VM’s.  When connecting by RDP parts of the screen were blocked out by black squares and rectangles like the image below.  This only happened when connected to Azure VM’s, I did not have the problem with VM’s in any of my other datacenters.

bitmap Continue reading “Azure RDP and Bitmap Caching”