It’s Deja Vu All Over Again… Timing… Timing… Timing… Azure Storage Keys and Your Computer’s Clock

< p class=”MsoNormal”> The demo code for my upcoming book on Windows Azure storage inexplicably began reporting that “The remote server returned an error: (403) Forbidden” on every operation. Investigating the problem using the integrated Visual Studio 2012 Server Explorer to view objects in cloud storage was also problematic… Visual Studio reported that the “current…

Comodo SSL Certificate Breach’s Potential Impact on Security Token Services and their Identity Providers

Recently, Iranian crackers used a username and password to make certificate requests from the Comodo Certificate Authority. These requests were successful and certificates were issued for 9 domains which are published on the Comodo Fraud Incident Report page: http://www.comodo.com/Comodo-Fraud-Incident-2011-03-23.html  This issue is of particular importance to me because SSL is the primary mechanism by which…

Programmatically Adding Google or Yahoo as an Identity Provider to the Windows Azure AppFabric Labs v2.0 Access Control Service

This blog post assumes that the reader knows the basics of Identity Providers and Security Token Services. Its purpose is to illustrate how to programmatically add Google or Yahoo as an Identity Provider because there isn’t much information available on how to do this. For further information about using the ManagementServices proxy, I suggest downloading…

Scaling Up Or Scaling Out In The Cloud

Windows Azure provides us the ability to scale our application up by specifying how many CPU cores we want in our service instances, or to scale out by specifying how many single-core instances we require. Both strategies can be used to accomplish our scaling objectives for the same price (8 1-Core machines @ 12 cents/hour…

Installing Windows Azure SDK v1.3 Breaks Support for Visual Studio 2008

Be aware that installing the November 2010 Windows Azure SDK v1.3 will break support for cloud projects running under Visual Studio 2008. To the best of my knowledge this was not widely announced (in fact, I learned about this fact during installation of the SDK). If you have Visual Studio 2008 Windows Azure projects, you’ll…

Updated FAQ for SQL Azure

Microsoft published an updated FAQ (May 3, 2010) for SQL Azure, available here The FAQ is very thorough and is a “must read” for any organization planning a relational database migration or new cloud application “This paper provides an architectural overview of SQL Azure Database, and describes how you can use SQL Azure to augment…

Improving Windows Azure Storage Throughput Using the Content Delivery Network

Windows Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN) caches your Windows Azure Data Storage blobs at strategically placed locations around the world (18 at the time of this blog post). The purpose of the CDN is to provide maximum bandwidth for delivery of content to our applications and users. Building massively scalable applications requires squeezing every ounce…

Learning Windows Azure platform Resources

I’ve assembled a short list of training materials and utilities that are helpful in learning the Windows Azure platform Windows Azure SDK v1.1 samples http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=dba6a576-468d-4ef6-877e-b14e3c865d3a&displaylang=en Windows Azure Samples: C:Program FilesWindows Azure SDKv1.1Samples.zip Windows Azure platform AppFabric v1.0 Code Samples http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=39856A03-1490-4283-908F-C8BF0BFAD8A5&displaylang=en C:Program Files (x86)Windows Azure platform AppFabric SDKV1.0Samples Windows Azure Platform Training Kit http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=413e88f8-5966-4a83-b309-53b7b77edf78&displaylang=en Windows Azure…

Understanding Windows Azure platform AppFabric Access Control Service Resources

Before we can begin using the Windows Azure AppFabric Access Control Service (ACS) to decouple our applications from security concerns and enable claims-based identities we need to understand the Resources contained in the Service Namespace and what role they play in the authentication and authorization infrastructure. This brief blog entry is meant to provide you…

Managing Windows Azure Deployments with Windows Azure Service Management CmdLets

Before you begin your Windows Azure development experience in earnest, you should be aware that leaving development and test instances deployed and running in the cloud can be expensive. Be aware that you will be billed for deployed service instances, even if they are suspended, so it is important that you actually remove the instances…

How To Get Diagnostic Data From Services Running In The Windows Azure Cloud

Each instance of Windows Azure Service Role runs its own monitor to gather its own instance specific diagnostic data. The problem that immediately presents itself is knowing what exactly is being collected, where the data is being saved, and how to retrieve it for inspection. The purpose of this blog post is to illuminate these…