Keeping up with the changes in Microsoft Azure is one of the more challenging tasks I have in my professional life. I teach classes on Microsoft Azure all the time and I provide advising about Cloud to my customers, so it’s kind in my job description that I need to know all (in the real world most of…) the new services and new features that Microsoft releases.
In the previous week we had some changes in the Azure Portal UI, but I also found out another great feature in the Azure Recovery Services. It’s now possible to backup your Azure Storage File Shares using the Azure Backup service in a very easy and quick way. When you add another Backup Item to you Azure Recovery Services Vault you can choose that it’s an Azure Service and up until now we only had the option for Virtual Machines, but now we also have Azure File Shares. At the time of writing this post it works with both Azure Storage Accounts V1 and V2. This allows you to create a backup solution for your Azure File Shares with zero infrastructure costs that allows you to do file-level restores.
Supposing that you already have a File Share in an Azure Storage account, if you want to backup that data using the Azure Backup service you just need to follow these steps:
- In the Recovery Services Vault overview blade, click on the + Backup option.
- In the Backup Goal blade select the following options and then click Backup.
- Where is your workload running?
- Select Azure
- What do you want to backup?
- Select Azure FileShare
- In the Select Storage Account blade, select the Azure Storage Account that contains the file share and click OK.
- This will register the Storage Account with Recovery Services Vault. This operation might take a minute.
- In the File Share to backup blade, select the file shares you want to backup and click OK. You can select more than 1 file share.
- In the Backup Policy blade, select an existing backup policy or create a new one.
- In the Backup blade, just click Backup and your File Share backup will be created.
Hope all of you love this feature as much as I do! This is a great feature to improve Microsoft Azure Storage and backup services. Waiting for more great features in both services, like Azure Blob Storage or event real Azure SQL Database Backups.
If you still don’t have an Azure Storage Account and/or an Azure Backup Vault here is some links to help you with that:
Microsoft is creating a new Microsoft Azure Exam - 70-535: Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions, in order to better align the objective domains to Architecting solutions in Microsoft Azure and not the details in implementing solutions in Azure like we have today in the 70-534 exam.
This new exam will also bring changes to the current certifications that use the now old 70-534 Exam. MCSA and MCSE will start using this in the next few weeks. If you have a current MCSA/MCSE or MCSD certification that used the 70-534, your certification will still be current. I also recommend you to check the new Microsoft Azure Certification that Microsoft is releasing. You can find more information's at: https://borntolearn.mslearn.net/b/weblog/posts/announcing-three-new-azure-exams
Microsoft is also creating a new MOC (Microsoft Official Course) that aligns with this new exam. It will be the 20535: Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions. According to the Born to Learn post it will be available in February 2018.
You can find more information in this Born to Learn article: https://borntolearn.mslearn.net/b/weblog/posts/microsoft-exam-70_2d00_535-to-replace-70_2d00_534_3a00_-architecting-microsoft-azure-solutions-on-november-30-_1320_-here_1920_s-what-you-should-know-
In Azure DevTest Labs, you can now set a Virtual Machine to expire on a specific date. You already could do this via ARM templates, but now this is possible via Azure Portal.
How does the Expiration options works?
Basically, the VM will be deleted on the specific date that you have specified. This is a very valuable feature to save you money and time. Being a consultant, trainer and speaker in several conferences I need to create labs quite often to show some of the cool features of Azure / SharePoint and other Microsoft Products. Not one or two times that I have forgot to delete resources that I no longer need and only remember some days after. During this time, I get billed by something that I wasn’t using… Silly me!!!
But now when I create a new VM under Azure DevTest Labs I can just choose an expiration date and I don’t have to worry about being billed for something that I will not use.
You just need to select your Virtual Machine expiration date:
Joining efforts with 4 other fantastic fellows: André Vala,
Niko Neugebauer, Pedro Vala and Ricardo Costa, I have created a brand new Technical
community in Portugal – Cloud Pro PT. This community will focus on Cloud Products
mainly, but not only, in Microsoft Azure. We want to help share the knowledge and
information about the cloud and how can we build better tools and services
based on cloud services.
We will have our first community meeting on the 8th
of February, 2017 – 18h30 to 21h30 at Microsoft Portugal Offices. In this first
event, we will have a great speaker lineup: Jason Nadal (Microsoft Portugal) and Luis Calado (Microsoft Portugal).
This meeting is free but registration is mandatory to estimate
the number of attendees. You should register at: https://www.eventbrite.pt/e/bilhetes-cloud-pro-pt-meeting-1-31525840638
You can also join our Facebook group and follow our Twitter account.
Microsoft had renamed the dev/test offer. The name has changed from MSDN Dev Test Pay-As-You-Go to Pay-As-You-Go Dev/Test. This offer is designer for all teams that need a Dev and/or Test Environment in the Cloud and not only Visual Studio users, like the previous name.
Why I’m writing this post just because of a name change?
Well because I see a lot of customers using standard subscriptions for their Dev and Test environments, when they could just use this type of subscription. Using this subscription customer get better rates and save some budget for other projects. In an IaaS scenario, and at the date of this post active Visual Studio subscribers, will only pay the Linux VM rate, because all the other software: Windows Server, SQL Server, SharePoint, … is included in the Visual Studio Subscription.
“Each active Visual Studio subscriber on your team can use the Microsoft software included with their subscription on Azure Virtual Machines for dev/test at no extra charge—you’ll just pay the Linux rate for VMs you run, even VMs with SQL Server, SharePoint Server, or other software that is normally billed at a higher rate. Upload custom virtual machine images yourself or use one of our pre-configured images from the Azure Gallery.”
You will also can take the advantage of lower rates on Cloud Services, HDInsight, and Web Apps.
More information at: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/offers/ms-azr-0023p