New Interactive Azure Marketplace, StorSimple Virtual Array Subscriptions Expands

New interactive Azure Marketplace makes it easy to navigate product catalog and find right solution. Dynamics 365 Relevance Search generally available worldwide.

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Microsoft enhancing the Azure Marketplace experience with a deep breadth of offerings ranging from open source to enterprise applications through a new interactive experience making it easier to navigate rich product catalogue available today.

You can find the right solution for your cloud application without having to log in to the Azure portal. Using the features you can find and deploy your favorite product. You can also discover new products categories to start.

And new product pages make it simpler and more convenient to deep dive into a product. You'll even find fields prominent and consistent across product pages important for decision making include: "Select a software plan, Publisher recommendations."

Finally, you can also test drive products for free without even needing an Azure subscription. You can access a Test Drive from the product page itself or by clicking on Test Drives on the left navigation pane.

New Azure Marketplace Experience

New Azure Marketplace Experience

VNET Peering generally available for Azure Government, with all of the same functions as commercial Azure.

Those who're not aware, "VNET peering is a mechanism that connects two virtual networks (VNETs) in same region through Azure backbone network. Once peered, the two virtual networks appear as one for all connectivity purposes. They are still managed as separate resources, but virtual machines in these virtual networks can communicate with each other directly by using private IP addresses."

Some of the benefits of using VNET peering include:

  • a low-latency, high-bandwidth connection between resources in different virtual networks.
  • ability to use resources such as network appliances and VPN gateways as transit points in a peered VNET.
  • ability to connect a virtual network that uses the Azure Resource Manager model to a virtual network that uses the classic deployment model and enable full connectivity between resources in these virtual networks.

For more details, check out the VNET Peering public documentation.

StorSimple Virtual Array hybrid cloud offering is now available exclusively for Microsoft Enterprise Agreement (EA) customers, "who're on MSDN, Pay-as-you-go, and other subscriptions."

"With flexible pay-as-you-go subscription, StorSimple Virtual Array can be used by Small and Medium Business (SMB) owners. MSDN subscribers can now run POCs or development and testing workloads," writes Azure team. In all these cases, "you can configure StorSimple Virtual Array as a file server (NAS) or as an iSCSI server (SAN) in new Azure portal."

Go to StorSimple product documentation for more information.

StorSimple Virtual Array 1200 Series

Relevance Search functionality launched as a result of a partnership between Dynamics and Azure Search teams is generally available worldwide today to every customer with December 2016 Update for Dynamics 365 online.

As of date, about 2000 organizations opted and indexed over 160 million records using Dynamics 365 Relevance Search. These organizations have "issued almost 8 million search queries to Azure Search with an average latency of under 90 milliseconds," says Azure team.

Relevance Search is successfully deployed using Azure Search's S2, S3, and S3 High Density (HD) pricing tiers.

Dynamics 365 Relevance Search

Dynamics 365 Relevance Search

Enhanced Automated Backup for SQL Server 2016 in Azure Virtual Machines, now let you control schedule of your backups and backup system databases.

This feature can be easily enable through Azure Portal or PowerShell on Azure Virtual Machines running SQL Server 2016 Enterprise, Standard, or Developer.

For those not familiar, "Automated Backup allows you to automatically backup all the databases in a SQL Server VM running in Azure to one of your storage accounts."

New capabilities in this release such as:

  • Automated Backup now gives you the option to schedule backups for System databases in addition to User databases.
  • Automated Backup now allows you to schedule a time window and frequency, daily or weekly, for full backups. In addition, you can specify how often to take log backups.

"Azure Storage keeps 3 copies of every VM disk to guarantees no data loss, thus the purpose of these backups is to recover from human errors (e.g. deleting a table). For disaster recovery purposes or compliance reasons, consider storing these backups in a geo-replicated storage account, preferably readable. This will make the backups available also in a remote Azure region."

Automated Backup for SQL Server 2016 in Azure Virtual Machines

Automated Backup for SQL Server 2016 in Azure Virtual Machines

Event Hubs .NET Standard client is now generally available, means that these new libraries are production ready and fully supported by Microsoft.

Following two new libraries are included in this release:

  • Microsoft.Azure.EventHubs library comprises the Event Hubs specific functionality that is currently found in the WindowsAzure.ServiceBus library. In here you will be able to do things like send and receive events from an Event Hub.
  • Microsoft.Azure.EventHubs.Processor replaces functionality of the Microsoft.Azure.ServiceBus.EventProcessorHost library. This is the easiest way to receive events from an Event Hub, and keeps you from having to remember things such as offsets and partition information between receivers.

Build your cloud skills with new Microsoft Azure training courses. The growing catalog of Microsoft Azure training courses can help boost your career and cloud skills, no matter what level you're at. Current and upcoming courses include training in Azure fundamentals, Azure Storage, Azure for AWS experts and more.

The massively open online courses (MOOCs) allow you to learn at your own pace in an interactive environment, with videos, labs and graded assessments.

Update 02/04: Azure Event Hubs releases new libraries with benefits that include open space and are production ready and fully supported by Microsoft, are now generally available.

Included with this release are two new NuGet packages and these libraries carry several benefits like:

The first, Microsoft.Azure.EventHubs, released as open source, comprises Event Hubs specific functionality that's now found in the WindowsAzure.ServiceBus library, allowing you to send and receive events from an Event Hub.

And, the second, Microsoft.Azure.EventHubs.Processor, also open-sourced offers an easy way to receive events from an Event Hub, sparing you from remembering items such as offsets and partition information between receivers.

"Yes! We are very excited that these new libraries are open source and available on GitHub," writes Azure program manager.