You may have heard Azure mentioned in the news or from an IT colleague, but what is it? And how does it benefit your business? Azure is Microsoft's cloud computing platform, and it is continually expanding its large set of cloud services that helps your organization meet current and future business challenges. It gives you the freedom to build, manage and deploy applications on a massive global network, using your favorite tools and frameworks.
Cloud computing platforms, like Azure, tend to be less expensive and more secure, reliable and flexible than on-premise servers. With the cloud, equipment downtime due to maintenance, theft or damage is almost non-existent. You can scale your computer and storage resources—up or down—almost instantly—when your needs change on Azure. Also, you typically only pay for the services you use, which provides a level of convenience and cost control that’s almost impossible to achieve with on-site infrastructure. More than 95% of Fortune 500 companies use Azure.
Azure offers solutions like Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS) that can be used for tasks such as analytics, virtual computing, storage, networking and much more. It can be used to replace, or supplement, your on-premise servers.
Quick facts about Azure
You can move computing resources up and down as needed.
Azure supports almost any operating system, language, tool or framework
With 99.95% uptime, you don’t have to worry about the functionality of your cloud computing system.
Data is housed in geo-synchronous data centers, so you know you’ll be able to access your business assets.
Only pay for what you use, and have a clear idea of what costs to expect.
Enhance and Implement Backup and Disaster Recovery
Azure is a backup and disaster recovery tool. It is flexible, and it can back up your data in almost any language, on any OS—from any location. Plus, you can easily define the frequency and extent of your backup schedule.
Azure site recovery enhances your tape backup with offsite replication, minimal onsite maintenance and up to ninety-nine years of data retention. Azure backup stores three copies of your data in three different locations in the data center, and then another three copies in a remote Azure data center, so you never have to worry about losing the data that matters most.
Host and Develop Web and Mobile Apps
If you are looking for a platform for hosting, developing or managing a web or mobile app, Azure makes those apps autonomous and adaptive with patch management, Auto Scale and integration for on-premise apps.
Automatic Patch Management
With Automatic patch management, you can spend less time managing your infrastructure and focus on improving your apps. Azure also comes with continuous deployment support, which allows you to streamline ongoing code updates.
Adjust your resources automatically based on customer web traffic using this aspect of Azure Web Apps’ services.
Web to On-Premise App Linking
Connect apps in both locations, so you can let both employees and partners securely access resources inside your firewall.
Distribute and Supplement Your Active Directory
Azure can integrate your Active Directory to supplement your identity and access capabilities, giving your DNS these three capabilities:
- Azure can globally distribute an Active Directory environment that is direct-connect enabled.
- If you have multiple locations or use on-premise apps or cloud apps like Office 365, Active Directory integration with Azure will be the central tool for managing and maintaining access to all those tools.
- Azure also enables you to utilize multi-factor authentication, adding an additional layer of security to your data and applications.
Windows Virtual Machines
Azure Virtual Machines (VM) is one of several types of on-demand, scalable computing resources that Azure offers. Typically, you choose a VM when you need more control over the computing environment than other choices offer. An Azure VM gives you the flexibility of virtualization without having to buy and maintain the physical hardware that runs it.
Azure virtual machines can be used in various ways. Some examples are:
Development and Test
Azure VMs offer a quick and easy way to create a computer with specific configurations required to code and test an application.
Applications in the Cloud
Because demand for your application can fluctuate, it might make economic sense to run it on a VM in Azure. You pay for extra VMs when you need them and shut them down when your needs scale down.
Virtual machines in an Azure virtual network can easily be connected to your organization’s network.
Ready to try Azure? CoreTech can help!
No matter what industry you are in, this is just a sampling of what Azure can do for you. It can be utilized in numerous ways, depending on your business’s unique needs.
If you’re ready to try out one of these services, you can get a trial and $200 in Azure credits when signing up. You can also get an idea of the expected cost by using Microsoft’s pricing calculator.
If you have questions about other ways you could use Azure or need help implementing one of their many services within your business, contact us today, We’ll help you determine the right tools for you.