October 29, 2014
Microsoft (MSFT) has unveiled a handful of new cloud services aimed at intelligently automating and streamlining IT operations, as well as increasing security. The services, launched on the Azure infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offering, were announced at the TechEd Europe 2014 conference.
Additionally, Microsoft expanded its cloud partner ecosystem with a new Azure Certified for Application Services program as part of the Azure Certified program and partner support for the Cloud OS Network that now covers more than 100 countries.
New or updated Azure services include:
Azure Operational Insights, which combines Azure, HDInsight and Microsoft System Center to gather and analyze machine data across cloud environments and turn that information into actionable insights for better inform business leaders to make decisions. The service will go into preview in November.
Azure Batch, which allows customers to deploy massive scale-out jobs, with access to thousands of cores, to solve complex problems quickly and with no additional infrastructure investment. It’s currently available in preview.
Azure Automation, which automates some of the more time-consuming tasks across Azure and third-party environments to reduce the risk associated with repetitive manual processes. Azure Automation is now generally available.
“Today’s enterprise is always on, and IT professionals and developers are under constant pressure to keep up with the demands of the business,” said Jason Zander, corporate vice president of Microsoft Azure, in a prepared statement. “We are using the power of our cloud platform—Azure, Office 365 and Microsoft Dynamics—to deliver technology solutions that empower IT professionals, developers and end users to do more.”
Microsoft also introduced security enhancements to Azure Virtual Machines and cloud services, including:
Support for multiple network interface cards so customers can bring their own networking and security appliances such as load balancers and firewalls.
New network security groups that enable customized security boundaries for network access and provide greater control over traffic flow.
Microsoft anti-malware for virtual machines and cloud services, which is a free service providing real-time threat protection.
For partners, Microsoft made a couple of announcements. First, it expanded the Cloud OS Network to include partner support in more than 100 countries. And Microsoft introduced Azure Certified for Application Services as part of the Azure Certified program. Customers now have access to more than 50 solutions from more than 30 partners through the Azure Marketplace.
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