SQL Azure Logins

SQL Azure currently has fairly limited management capabilities.  When you create a database, you receive an administrator account that is tied to your login (you can change the SQL Azure password, though).  Because there is no GUI for user management, there’s a temptation to use this account in all your applications, but I highly recommend you create users for your application that have limited access.  If you limit access to only stored procedures, you need to specify execute permissions.&... [More]

WCF in an Azure WorkerRole

The other day, a colleague got in touch with me looking for help in getting a WCF service working in an Azure WorkerRole.   It would work locally, but not deployed in the cloud.   This is a common problem I’ve run into – for example, calling Open() on a ServiceHost will work locally, but no in the cloud due to permissions. I wasn’t much help in getting John’s situation resolved, but he pinged me about it a couple days later with the solution.  The first is to make sure your service... [More]

Azure Miniseries #1: Migration

I’m starting to put together some short form screencasts on Windows Azure related topics.  I’ll use my blog to dive into specifics or display code samples/downloads where appropriate – but first up is a quick look at getting a project setup and migrating existing applications into an Azure webrole.

MSDN Events and Roadshows Coming Soon…

Top line:  March 3rd, we’ll be in Raleigh, and March 5th, we’ll be in Charlotte for our next MSDN Event and Southern Fried Roadshow.  This time it’s a full day of Azure – if you have an interest in cloud computing, be sure to come out!  See you then! MSDN Events presents:  Take Your Applications Sky High with Cloud Computing and the Windows Azure Platform Join your local MSDN Events team as we take a deep dive into cloud computing and the Windows Azure Platform. We’ll start with a ... [More]

Azure SLA Confusion

Azure SLA is something that gets discussed quite a bit but there’s something that I see causing a bit of confusion.  The SLA for Azure compute instances states: For compute, we guarantee that when you deploy two or more role instances in different fault and upgrade domains, your internet facing roles will have external connectivity at least 99.95% of the time. Some folks (for example, this post) incorrectly conclude that you need to deploy your solution across 2 or more datacenters to get this SL... [More]

Thoughts on Windows Azure Pricing…

There are a LOT of posts out there talking about Azure pricing.  There’s the Azure TCO Calculator, and some good practices scattered out there that demystify things.  Some of these bear repeating here, but I also wanted to take you through my math on expenses – how you design your app can have serious consequences on your pricing.  So let’s get the basic pricing out of the way first (just for the Azure platform, not AppFabric or SQL Azure): Compute = $0.12 / hour Storage = $0.15 / GB ... [More]

New VS Tools for Windows Azure, Feb 2010

The latest Visual Studio Tools for Windows Azure (v 1.1, Feb 2010) was just released and can be downloaded here.  It does not support VS2010 Beta 2, so you’ll need to either use VS2008, or wait until VS2010 RC in a few weeks. I’m really excited about this release for 1 immediate to-do in my code, and 1 would-be-fun to-do in my code.  First, Windows Azure Drive beta is available in this release (called XDrive at PDC).   Windows Azure Drive lets you mount an NTFS virtual hard disk (VHD) b... [More]

Windows Azure Role Communication

I have a few posts along the lines of scaling an Azure application, but thought I’d throw this tidbit out.  You might be developing your own management system for your Azure deployments, and in doing so, having visibility into the roles running within your deployment is very handy.   The idea behind this series of posts is to ultimately explore how to get visibility into roles, and then a few ways we can tackle inter-role communication.  The first task is to define internal endpoints f... [More]

SQL Azure Transport-Level Error

If you’ve been playing with SQL Azure, you might have run into this error when opening a connection to the database: A transport-level error has occurred when sending the request to the server. (provider: TCP Provider, error: 0 - An established connection was aborted by the software in your host machine.) Ick!  Anything at that transport level surely can’t be a problem with my code, can it?  :) The goods news is that you aren’t going crazy and the problem isn’t with your code.  There’s a d... [More]

Robocopy in Win7

I’m surprised I didn’t realize this earlier, but Win7 introduced multithreading support in Robocopy.  I’ve always used Robocopy for copying lots of files particularly over a network, and especially over a VPN.  I’ve also always specified the /E /Z switches to copy all folders, and support file resume.  File resume is especially helpful over a VPN because the VPN connection may be lost for any number of reasons.  I’ve had situations where my access was off for hours, and it picks up rig... [More]

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