Remote Desktop Services Solutions Templates Now in Azure Marketplace

You can quickly now find Remote Desktop Services Azure Marketplace solutions templates by searching "RDS". SQL Server Management Packs Update (6.7.16.0) in Public Preview.

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Remote Desktop Services solutions templates as on Monday February 20, are now available in the Azure Marketplace.

"Azure Marketplace, (those who don't know) is a great repository to start a trial or purchase Azure-verified solutions for custom deployment, including the trickier multi-server deployment." And, with flexible search functionality, "it's becomes easy to find the exact solution you're looking for." For example, "you can quickly find the RDS Azure Marketplace solutions template by searching 'RDS'."

At Ignite 2016, Microsoft had highlighted all the improvements made in core Remote Desktop Services (RDS) platform in Windows Server 2016 to leverage the power of Azure.

For creating a small-footprint RDS deployment with Azure RDS templatem, follow these steps (verbatim):

  1. Pick your Azure Quickstart template:
    1. Go to the Azure Quickstart Templates site.
    2. Type "RDS" in the search box, and press Enter.
    3. Choose the template that matches what you are trying to do. Make sure you meet any prerequisites for that specific template. (For example, if you are want to use a custom image for your VMs, make sure you have already uploaded that image to an Azure storage account.)
    4. Click Deploy to Azure.
    5. You'll need to provide some details (like admin user name, AD domain name) in the Azure portal. This varies based on the template you choose.
    6. Click Purchase.
  2. Connect to your deployment.

    1. Download and run this PowerShell script on your test device to install any certificates needed to connect to the RDS deployment.

      This step is only necessary during the testing phase. When you deploy RDS in Azure in production, make sure to follow best practices like purchasing and using a publicly trusted SSL certificate on your web servers.

    2. When prompted, sign into your Azure account. Select the Azure subscription, resource group, and public IP address created for this new deployment.
    3. When the script is finished, the RD Web page launches in your default browser. You can double-check the RD Web page by comparing the URL for the page to the DNS address you provided during deployment.

      Sign in with the admin credentials you created during deployment to see the default desktop published for you. You can also send users the RD Web site to test their desktops and applications.

How to deploy Azure Site Recovery Mobility Service takes a look at the various options to deploy the ASR mobility service during different stages of a production ASR rollout.

"With large enterprises deploying Azure Site Recovery (ASR) as their trusted Disaster Recovery (DR) solution for application-aware DR, their DR architects have asked us about the best practices to be followed while deploying ASR in production environments. Given ASR's multi-VM consistency promise to provide full application recovery on Microsoft Azure, the mobility service is a critical piece in the VMware to Azure scenario," writes Azure team.

Those new, "Azure Site Recovery (ASR), is a part of Microsoft Operations Management Suite (OMS), and enables you to gain control and manage your workloads no matter where they run (Azure, AWS, Windows Server, Linux, VMware, or OpenStack) with a cost-effective, all-in-one cloud IT management solution."

"Existing System Center customers can take advantage of the OMS add-on, empowering them to do more by leveraging their current investments. Get access to all the new services that OMS offers, with a convenient step-up price for all existing System Center customers." "You can also access only IT management services that you need, enabling you to on-board quickly and have immediate value, paying only for the features that you use."

The ASR mobility service installation methods listed below, can be used to deploy mobility service on supported Microsoft Windows and Linux operating systems:

  • Push install is the easiest method to deploy the ASR mobility service on the virtual machines you want to protect.
  • Install mobility service using software deployment tools like System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), Windows Server Update Service (WSUS), or other third party software deployment tools to push software on servers in their environment.
  • Install mobility service using Azure Automation Desired State Configuration (DSC)
  • ASR mobility service can be installed manually via command line or GUI. If you plan to protect 5-10 servers, and don't have a software deployment tool being used in your organization, then you can use the manual install method.

Additionally, the following decision tree diagram helps to summarize how to choose the best deployment option that suites your environment:

Azure Site Recovery Best Deployment Option Decision Tree
Azure Site Recovery Best Deployment Option Decision Tree

Public Preview for SQL Server Management Packs Update (6.7.16.0) released today, included in the download are Microsoft System Center Management Packs for SQL Server 2008/2008 R2/2012/2014/2016 (6.7.16.0).

You can download Microsoft System Center Management Packs (Community Technical Preview 1) for SQL Server HERE.

Here is the full changelog:

New SQL Server 2008/2008 R2/2012 MP Features and Fixes

  • Implemented some enhancements to data source scripts
  • Fixed issue: The SQL Server 2012 Database Files and Filegroups get undiscovered upon Database discovery script failure
  • Fixed issue: DatabaseReplicaAlwaysOnDiscovery.ps1 connects to a cluster instance using node name instead of client access name and crashes
  • Fixed issue: CPUUsagePercentDataSource.ps1 crashes with "Cannot process argument because the value of argument "obj" is null" error
  • Fixed issue: Description field of custom user policy cannot be discovered
  • Fixed issue: SPN Status monitor throws errors for servers not joined to the domain
  • Fixed issue: SQL Server policy discovery does not ignore policies targeted to system databases in some cases
  • Increased the length restriction for some policy properties in order to make them match the policy fields
  • Actualized Service Pack Compliance monitor according to the latest published Service Packs for SQL Server

New SQL Server 2014/2016 MP Features and Fixes

  • Implemented some enhancements to data source scripts
  • Fixed issue: DatabaseReplicaAlwaysOnDiscovery.ps1 connects to a cluster instance using node name instead of client access name and crashes
  • Fixed issue: CPUUsagePercentDataSource.ps1 crashes with "Cannot process argument because the value of argument "obj" is null" error
  • Fixed issue: Description field of custom user policy cannot be discovered
  • Fixed issue: SPN Status monitor throws errors for servers not joined to the domain
  • Fixed issue: SQL Server policy discovery does not ignore policies targeted to system databases in some cases
  • Fixed issue: Garbage Collection monitor gets generic PropertyBag instead of performance PropertyBag
  • Increased the length restriction for some policy properties in order to make them match the policy fields
  • Actualized Service Pack Compliance monitor according to the latest published Service Packs for SQL Server