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Azure Security and Compliance: Virtual Cloud Defense (VCD) Released to General Availability
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on November 28, 2016
5/5 (1)

If you’ve been talking to customers about a cloud, no matter what platform, I’m pretty sure that you heard from almost any of them that one of their major concerns about the public cloud paradigm is security. Especially when you are talking to the public sector or private companies, like financial institutions, where their entire business relies on their workloads and users secure environment.

Azure Government represents an isolated version of Azure dedicated to these customers, where most of the Azure features are available under strict compliance rules. In order to enhance this service, Microsoft released recently to GA (General Availability) a key component of the Azure Government service: Virtual Cloud Defense (VCD).

Booz Allen Virtual Cloud Defense Security Stack

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Microsoft joins the Linux Foundation
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on November 22, 2016
5/5 (1)

Big news: this year Microsoft has joined the Linux Foundation as a platinum member.

Microsoft contributed a lot to Linux over the past several years, first of all, with improving support for Hyper-V. The company appears to be a reasonably good open source community member, not just publishing source code repositories that are sporadically updated from an internal development branch, but actually performing development in the open community contributions and being open for discussion and finding consensus regarding new features.

microsoft and linux

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Azure Offers Backing Up VMware VMs with a Freeware Tool
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on November 21, 2016
4.75/5 (4)

After hearing some news about Microsoft like, largely investing in Open Source hardware, PowerShell open source and for Linux, SQL Server for Linux, MS joining the Linux foundation, and so many others; you may think hell just starting freezing, but no, this is how Microsoft is engaging the world now. Integration is the keyword, and we salute them for that.

Adding a new feature among these is the recent update to their main backup tool for cloud: Azure Backup Server now supports VMware virtual machines. MABS (Microsoft Azure Backup Server) it is not a new tool, it’s been around for a while now offering backups for Hyper-V virtual machines, physical machines, file servers, SQL, SharePoint and Exchange.

Microsoft Azure Backup Server

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How the IT and Cloud Spending is Going to Look Like in 2017?
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on November 14, 2016
4.75/5 (4)

What’s the impact for IT regarding the US Presidential Election or Brexit? How is the world economy going to be affected in 2017 for the IT world? Where do we stand regarding private, hybrid and public clouds consumption? Will companies put IT jobs in danger by migrating massively to the public cloud in the next couple of years? Those are some of the big questions a lot of people are asking right now.

Even though we can never know for sure, we can start analyzing and make some conjectures using some of the reports provided by companies that focus their jobs on doing that. Let’s take a look to some of the key research items available.

IT Spending Will Grow 2.9% Compared to 2016

Gartner report says we need to expect that the companies’ budget will spend 2.9% more in 2017 compared to 2016. Hitting a grand total of $3.5 trillion for the upcoming year.

Worldwide IT Spending

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Microsoft, the Open Source Cloud Hardware and Why is it Important to You
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on November 7, 2016
5/5 (1)

There was a time when “open source” and “Microsoft” were two words that did not get along, at all. Bill Gates when he was leading the Redmond Company said, even though the free software should be part of the ecosystem, the General Public License (GPL, licenses that used to rule most of the open source projects) has a “Pac-Man-like nature” that was destroying the “healthy ecosystem” for companies. Or even later when he said that the open source software is a “New Communism” (in a despicable way, of course).

Well, for a while now seems those type of statements from Microsoft are just part of an old tale. Microsoft recently announced that the release of the Project Olympus, their new hyperscale cloud hardware design and a new model for open source hardware development with the Open Compute Project (OCP) community.

The building blocks that Project Olympus will contribute consist of a new universal motherboard, high-availability power supply with included batteries, 1U/2U server chassis, high-density storage expansion, a new universal rack power distribution unit (PDU) for global datacenter interoperability, and a standards compliant rack management card.

rack management card

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Software Defined Networking (SDN) Stack in the Windows Server 2016
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on November 3, 2016
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Windows Server 2016 enables building a Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC) with new layers of security and Azure-related approach for hosting business applications and infrastructure. The new Software Defined Network (SDN) Stack  provides dynamic security and hybrid flexibility by enforcing network policy in the Hyper-V Virtual Switch using the Azure Virtual Filtering Platform (VFP) Switch Extension. Instead of programming network configurations into a physical switch,  the new Microsoft Network Controller delivers the network policy to the Hyper-V Hosts using the OVSDB protocol and is programmed into the VFP extension of the vSwitch by a Host Agent which enforces the policy.

VXLAN Encapsulation
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DoS attack on major DNS provider, Dyn, brings down Internet. Twitter, Reddit affected
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on October 24, 2016
5/5 (1)

dns ddos

The recent distributed denial of service attack against Dyn, the dynamic DNS service, affected the availability of a row of major websites and Internet services, including Twitter and Reddit. The attack began at 7:10am Eastern Time (12:10pm UK) and was mainly focused on Dyn’s US East Coast name servers.

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How to Protect your Data on Nano Server using Storage Replica?
Posted by Charbel Nemnom on October 10, 2016
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sim card

Introduction

With the release of Windows Server 2016, there’s a lot of new features that have been added to increase availability and security. One hot feature that will add a lot of benefits for small, medium and enterprise business environments is Storage Replica (SR). Be sure that’s going to help you in your Disaster Recovery Plan and protect your data against catastrophic losses.

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vRops 6.3 – Walkthrough new features
Posted by Michael Ryom on October 4, 2016
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vRops 6.3 has been announced. I have already upgraded a test environment of mine and a few production environment and are talking to customers who what’s to upgrade asap. There are differently some great features in there that make an upgrade worthwhile.

Before I jump in and show case all the cool improvements and added features. A word of caution BEFORE upgrading make sure all endpoint operations agents have been upgraded. vRops 6.3 is not backwards compatible with 6.x agents.

vRealizw Operation Manager
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Manage VM placement in Hyper-V cluster with VMM
Posted by Romain Serre on September 23, 2016
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The placement of the virtual machines in a Hyper-V cluster is an important step to ensure performance and high availability. To make a highly available application, usually a cluster is deployed spread across two or more virtual machines. In case of a Hyper-V node is crashing, the application must keep working.

But the VM placement concerns also its storage and its network. Let’s think about a storage solution where you have several LUNs (or Storage Spaces) according to a service level. Maybe you have a LUN with HDD in RAID 6 and another in RAID 1 with SSD. You don’t want that the VM which requires intensive IO was placed on HDD LUN.

Storage Classification in Virtual Machine Manager

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