Creating First-Run ARM Templates

Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates are a great solution for creating a repeatable environment. Using Infrastructure as Code (IaC) makes  it easy to manage configurations, avoid dependency issues, and prevent server drift. Using IaC also means that you can recreate the environment as often as necessary to ensure it remains consistent. This gets complicated when…

Choosing Between Containers and Virtual Machines

Containers are simple, but harder to explain. Fundamentally, containers are a virtualization technology and they share a lot of common ground with virtual machines, however the biggest difference between the two is where the abstraction occurs. A VM hypervisor exposes a set of virtualized hardware components like a virtual network card, a virtual hard disk,…

Build, Test, and Deploy .NET Apps with Docker

I had the privilege of presenting at the Atlanta Code Camp this year on .NET and Docker. This talk covered some of the low level components that would be used to build out a DevOps pipeline for .NET apps in Docker — everything from building an app, testing and app, and pushing that app through…

Creating Recoverable TFS Backups

One of the things I’ve come to appreciate most about the cloud software-as-a-service solutions is that it can reduce work. Although there’s still a need for IT, some tasks – such as performing backups – are provided by the vendor. If you’ve ever tried to backup a Team Foundation Server by hand, you have can…

DevOps: Connecting VSTS to Azure

DevOps is about increasing efficiency and eliminating barriers. There’s a lot of convenience in deploying directly from Visual Studio Team Services into the Azure cloud. With plugin based build and release pipelines, it’s very easy to quickly configure a release and see the results online. You can quickly configure a release to deploy to Azure;…

How to Avoid a Docker Database Disaster

Containers are cool – and everyone and their mother is trying to get on board with them. While many applications are natural fit for containers in many cases, it feels like some applications are forced into containers so vendors can say, “Hey look at me! I do containers too!” This is particularly true of database…

Multi-Stage Builds with Docker

One of the most anticipated announcements in the Docker space when it comes to building images is Multi-Stage builds because of the huge benefits it gives to CI/CD pipelines in DevOps. Before this announcement, building software in a container usually involved creating a container with all the SDK’s and compilers in the container, uploading code…

Microsoft Will Release First Technical Preview of Azure Stack on Jan. 29

Microsoft will debut its hybrid-cloud platform, Azure Stack, this week, offering a technical preview that goes live Jan. 29. Aimed at enterprise customers who aren’t ready to put all their sensitive information in the public cloud, Azure Stack allows users to deliver Azure services from their own datacenters. The platform’s architecture mimics that of Azure.…

Microsoft Connect() Virtual Conference Preview

Last year Microsoft reached out to developers via a global virtual conference aptly named Connect().  During that conference they announced the .NET Open Source initiatives for Linux and Mac and also revealed the Visual Studio Code editor for Windows, Mac, and Linux.  This year’s conference promises more revelations with keynotes and presentations from developer favorites like…

Cloud Foundry for Azure Released

Microsoft has announced general availability of the open source DevOps platform Cloud Foundry for Azure.  Microsoft has worked with the Cloud Foundry community to provide Resource Manager Templates to enable fast deployment of BOSH tools. By merging the Azure Cloud Provider Interface (CPI) into the upstream, open source Cloud Foundry repository, Cloud Foundry on Azure…

What Developers Need to Know About Docker

Docker is an application virtualization service based on features of the Linux operating system.  It provides a way to share a host OS, and using a virtualized filesystem, install and run Linux based apps in an isolated environment called a container.    The following diagram shows how Docker is different from Virtual Machines. Docker Architecture Docker…