Microsoft Azure Innovations at the Center of Microsoft TechEd 2014

Karen Forster

by Karen Forster on 5/13/2014

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At Microsoft TechEd 2014 this week in Houston, the company made several major announcements concerning its cloud strategy. As I noted in "5 things you don't know about Microsoft Azure" last week, strategic enhancements to the company’s premier cloud platform have been coming fast and furiously in the past year, making it hard to keep up and to fully appreciate the impressive sum of all these changes.

The TechEd announcements build on that foundation. (Read the official Microsoft blog here for details.) Here are the highlights:

  1. Microsoft Azure ExpressRoute adds flexibility to hybrid scenarios by building a bridge between on-premises and the cloud for scenarios such as data migration, replication for business continuity, and disaster recovery. This technology bypasses the public Internet and lets you establish private connections between Azure datacenters and your on-premises infrastructure through partnerships with third-party providers including ATT, BT, Equinix, Level3, Telecity Group, and Verizon. This is a clear differentiator for Microsoft versus competitors.

  2. Azure Files is new technology that will simplify how you share files across applications and services. It gives you the ability to have a single file share that consolidates multiple virtual machines. Moving applications to the cloud has meant having to rewrite your storage stack because existing applications have been designed to run in on-premises VMs in file shares. Azure Files now lets you use the same Server Message Block (SMB) protocol in the cloud that you use on premises. You no longer need to build and maintain your own file shares. I’ll have an in-depth article on this technology soon and will update this article with a link.

  3. Building on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V Recovery Manager technology, the Azure Hyper-V Recovery Manager works with System Center 2012 to coordinate replication and recovery of private clouds in your datacenter. Now Microsoft Azure Site Recovery preview protects VMs and services on Azure for disaster recovery.

  4. Announcing a preview of Microsoft Azure RemoteApp, the company is extending its commitment to managing and protecting today’s mobile workforce and their data, devices, applications, and identities. Azure RemoteApp lets mobile users access their Windows applications on diverse devices by taking advantage of the proven Remote Desktop Services technology.

  5. Data Loss Prevention is being extended from Exchange to include documents in SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business for Office 365 E3 enterprise customers. This will let you keep sensitive content from being shared outside your company.

Developers also received plenty of new technologies. Watch for Andrew Connell's coverage here on the IT Unity site.

Topic: Cloud

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