1st Question – Why & How are You Going to Use Windows Azure?

Category: Azure

sharepointAzureGuide

Most of you are probably thinking “I don’t need to read this” because you already know what you are about to do on Azure or have an idea of mostly what it is.

But seriously, the entire point of this series of articles is to:

  • Save you money
  • Prevent as many issues from occurring as possible
  • Understand parts of Azure that are not explained or documented very well

I will let you decide if approximately 1 hour of your time reading this is worth reading through this or not, but for those who I do truly hope this helps you avoid the “pains” I endured using Azure for my SharePoint environments. So, back to me! Ok, I admit it, I got all excited about the “hoopla” of Azure and cloud technology and just jumped in the water head first without understanding what I was doing. I just found the first pre-configured PowerShell script on the web to create a SharePoint farm and clicked some buttons thinking “poof”, I have a SharePoint test playground now. Unfortunately, it came at a cost (like over $1000 in a couple of months). I admit that I didn’t stop to really understand what Azure was, how to use it cost effectively or if it was for right for my business need before I started using it. I love Azure, I think there are a lot of great things about it and I see a bright future ahead for it as well. However, there are some drawbacks to it as also (same for AWS too). I hope I might save you some time, trouble and $$$ with these articles before you “dive in” to the Azure world.

CloudWhy

What is your business need or purpose for using Azure?

  • A development / testing SharePoint environment for 1 person?
  • A development / testing SharePoint environment for a larger scale, multi-tier, multi-person scenario?
  • Creating your first provider-hosted SharePoint app?
  • Storage backups for your on-premise SharePoint data or VMs?
  • Creating mobile push notification services?
  • Creating and hosting a web site?
  • A hybrid solution to expand your existing network?
  • A fully cloud based, enterprise level SharePoint environment?
  • A fully cloud based, enterprise level SharePoint environment with a public website?
  • A number of other virtual machines such as Ubuntu, Drupal, Oracle, SuSe and more?
  • Something else, a combination of random things?

Each one of these scenarios can be configured in a different manner, have different concerns/limitations and most importantly have extremely different prices depending on how you decide to implement and use them. In a nutshell, determining why you are going to use Azure is the first step in your plan. If you are not sure why you might use Azure yet, that is alright too, just try to learn as much about how it works and the pricing before you decide to use it.

Other Resources

Azure Case StudiesMicrosoft

20 Scenarios for Using Windows AzureKeith Mayer

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