Azure is a cloud computing platform from Microsoft. The platform offers access to cloud computing and related services. Companies can order virtual machines, object storage, or content delivery networks (CDNs). Azure services also include cloud enterprise solutions not only from Microsoft but also from other developers. Here we offer a more in-depth overview of Microsoft Azure.
Microsoft Azure: What is it?
Microsoft Azure offers an array of interoperable services, including open-source and proprietary technologies from Microsoft and other companies. Unlike on-premise servers or traditional data centers, Azure billing is based on resource consumption, not reserved capacity. The pricing varies depending on the service type, storage options, and the physical location of your Azure instances. Let’s take storage pricing as an example.
You have different options based on redundancy and distribution. In the Central US region, hot locally redundant block blob storage (LRS-HOT) starts at $0.0184 per GB with three copies in one data center. For more redundancy, geographically redundant storage (GRS-HOT) starts at $0.0368 per GB with three copies in two geographically distant data centers. If you need read access at the second data center, you can opt for Read-Access GRS (RAGRS-HOT) starting at $0.046 per GB.
You are still responsible for maintaining the highest degree of cybersecurity even though Microsoft Azure takes every precaution to protect your data. This is made easier by VPN features like data encryption and kill switch. Another valuable technology is double VPN Android, but it is also implemented for other platforms. The concept is that before your traffic reaches its destination, it passes through multiple VPN servers. As a result, there is increased defense against numerous online dangers.
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
PaaS is a cloud-based service model that offers a certain amount of dedicated resources to clients. Developers use the PaaS model to support the software application development lifecycle. PaaS implies pay as you use resources. Owners purchase fixed resources.
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) stands for instant computing infrastructure based on RAM, compute, CPU, network, and disk. An important aspect is that all this is controlled via the Internet. The system’s approach makes it easy for a company to scale according to needs, meaning a business can only pay for what it uses. IaaS allows you to avoid unnecessary complexity and excess costs.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
Azure SaaS is a service model that provides access to cloud applications: mail, accounting tools, calendars, etc. Suitable for quickly deploying applications and reducing costs. Azure manages the hardware and software. This approach helps reduce costs and improve application security.
Businesses value their data and customer data highly. Every year their volume increases and ensuring security becomes more complicated. Analysis, processing, and interaction also require new approaches.
Azure offers a transition from traditional local servers to cloud solutions. The difference is that the business relies too much on the local server alone and it is very limited in resources. Microsoft Azure lets you pay only for the data you use and allows you to easily scale to meet your changing business needs. Plus, Azure servers are decentralized and it is possible to store and backup data in several data centers. Most often, data is replicated 3 times, and setting up geographically redundant data is much simpler when compared to dedicated environments.
Azure DevOps services are a powerful solution for advanced collaboration and smart planning. Among the available services, there are tools for developing, building, testing, and deploying applications.
Services in Azure:
- Azure Repos: Git repositories or Team Foundation Version Control (TFVC) are actively used.
- Azure Pipelines: services for continuous integration and seamless application delivery.
- Azure Boards: Offers workflow planning and monitoring tools. There are services based on Kanban and Scrum methods for code management.
- Azure Artifacts: You can share packages from public and private sources and integrate package sharing into your pipelines.
Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD)
AVD enables central management and security of users’ desktops by creating Windows 10 & 11 virtual desktops in Azure, allowing end users to work remotely with a secure connection. End users can also securely store data in the cloud rather than on their local devices. AVD separates the computer environment from user devices, greatly reducing the risk of confidential information being left on a personal device.
Azure has compliance certifications such as GDPR, ISO, and HIPAA. This means that the service is approved by government agencies and can be used by companies from the legal, medical, and security segments. Azure does its best to keep user data safe. You need to understand that the service cannot guarantee the security of data transmission; this role can be assigned to VPN free Chrome or other forms of VPN. The purpose of the VPN is to encrypt the data and securely deliver it to the server; then Azure will take steps to protect the data.
Applications of Azure
If we conditionally divide Azure services, we can distinguish the following areas:
- Development: Azure uses software development to collaborate on code, test, and troubleshoot software.
- DevOps: Among the range of Azure tools are Visual Studio Team Services and others, which are basic for DevOps. They are needed for diagnostics and implementation of assemblies, as well as for experiments.
- Machine Learning: Machine Learning applications use AI to work with large data sets, cognitive computing, creating virtual worlds, working with voice data, etc.
- Containerization: Containerization services include the Azure platform for Docker and Kubernetes.
- IT Security: This includes identifying and responding to IT security in the cloud and managing sensitive assets and encryption keys.
- Internet of Things: Azure has services for collecting, analyzing, and monitoring real-time data that comes from IoT. There are modules for almost all options for using this data.
Azure offers a huge infrastructure built on cloud technologies. These are data storage, cloud computing, AI, and similar services. Using Azure is cost-effectively better than building your own on-premises servers and this is the main argument in its favor.