AWS vs. Azure: Why Migrate Your Applications To Microsoft Azure

Small plane flying among clouds in an azure blue sky.

Amazon Web Services was first introduced to the world with the release of Simple Queue Service in 2004. Relaunched in 2006 with the addition of S3 and EC2, AWS quickly grew into the dominant cloud platform. Microsoft was slower off the blocks than Amazon. Azure was announced in 2008, released in 2010 as Windows Azure, and was renamed Microsoft Azure in 2014.

But, in spite of starting later, Azure has grown into a robust platform that is as capable as AWS. Because of Microsoft’s expertise with enterprise software and services, it is superior as a business cloud platform for many use cases.

In this article, we’ll look at just some of the reasons that Microsoft Azure is an excellent choice for the future of your business’s cloud migration and infrastructure hosting strategy.

Azure Is Less Expensive Compared to AWS

AWS is known for its complex and arcane pricing structure. Many businesses have been surprised by their AWS bill because they didn’t understand the pricing structure. As an enterprise-focused business that has decades of experience providing services to businesses, Microsoft offers a cleaner pricing structure that is presented with greater transparency. There’s less likelihood of being surprised when you get your infrastructure bill from Azure.

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Microsoft Gives Users More Control Over Their Cloud Environment With Azure Dedicated Hosts

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Azure Virtual Machines are the center-piece service of Azure’s public cloud platform, allowing users to launch flexible virtual machines in a wide variety of specifications. However, for some Azure users, Virtual Machines doesn’t provide the control or the regulatory compliance they need. 

To fill that gap, Microsoft recently announced the introduction of Azure Dedicated Hosts – single-tenant dedicated servers that can be used to host virtual machines.

Microsoft has previously addressed this market segment with isolated Virtual Machines, which were available in a limited number of types. Dedicated Hosts are much more flexible, and give users a considerable amount of control over the physical hardware that underlies their virtual machines.

Azure Dedicated Hosts can be deployed via the Azure Portal, as with any of Azure’s services. Currently, there are two types of Azure Dedicated Host available, with differing processor specifications. 

For example, the Dedicated Host Type 1 is based on the 2.3 GHz Intel Xeon® E5–2673 v4 processor. The Host Type determines which Azure VMs can be launched on the Dedicated Host and in which combinations. Users can run any number of VMs within the capacity limitations of their chosen server.

Why Choose An Azure Dedicated Host?

For most purposes, Azure Virtual Machines hosted on the public cloud are more than sufficient. But, in some scenarios, it’s desirable to have greater control over the machine that hosts VMs. A Dedicated Host might be needed when a business:

  • Has specific regulatory compliance requirements that mandate single-tenant hosting or data integrity guarantees.
  • Needs to know which physical machine a virtual machine runs on. On a public cloud platform, there is little insight into the physical layer and no control over which server hosts a VM.
  • Wants to control when and how the host operating system is maintained, including when patches and host OS updates are applied. Dedicated Hosts give users a 35-day window in which to apply Azure-initiated maintenance operations.
  • The business requires a specific hardware configuration.

Dedicated Hosts can also be deployed into host groups, allowing Azure users to build powerful physical server clusters inside Microsoft’s data centers.

Azure Dedicated Hosts do not provide as much control as a traditional dedicated server: they’re intended to be used to host Azure Virtual Machines, supporting Windows, Linux, and SQL Server VMs. However, they are an excellent addition to the platform for users who want more insight into their VM-hosting platform than is typically possible.

VIAcode can help your businesses to migrate, develop, and manage applications running on Azure, including Azure Dedicated Hosts. To find out how we can help, or to learn more about our free Azure Migration service, contact a VIAcode engineer today.

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5 Reasons You Should Migrate Your Applications to Microsoft Azure

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Are your business’s critical applications hosted on an aging server that everyone is afraid to touch in case something goes wrong? Have you been putting off upgrading your server because of worries about downtime, cost, and disruption? 

The bad news is that you will have to bite the bullet sooner or later. The good news is that there are better hosting options than colocated servers with substantial upfront costs or leased servers that will eventually become obsolete.

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How the Azure Cloud Helps Businesses Secure Their Infrastructure

Businesses face a bewildering array of infrastructure security threats. Criminals and other bad actors invest substantial resources into developing sophisticated attacks and malware, while businesses struggle to meet the challenges of an ever-evolving threat landscape with vast amounts of money in play. Bromium, a cybersecurity company, estimates that the cybercrime economy was worth $1.5 trillion last year.

Successful criminals accrue huge windfalls by selling stolen data and personal information, by infecting infrastructure with ransomware and crypto-mining malware, and numerous other types of attack. In contrast, worldwide spending on cybersecurity is around $114 billion, according to Gartner, and there is a dire shortage of experienced cybersecurity professionals.

In short, businesses need all the help they can get to secure their infrastructure.

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Introducing the New SQL Assessment API For Microsoft SQL Server

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VIAcode is happy to announce the public availability of the SQL Assessment API, a new extension of Microsoft SQL Server Management Objects (SMO) that allows SQL Server users to programmatically evaluate the configuration of SQL Server instances against a configurable set of rules.

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VIAcode Will Migrate Your Applications To Azure Cloud For Free

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Does legacy IT infrastructure frustrate your efforts to grow and evolve business-critical applications? Are you paying too much for on-premises or colocated servers? Migrating to the Azure cloud will free your business from legacy infrastructure. With Azure, businesses iterate quickly, scale smoothly, and take control of infrastructure spending.

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Cloud Migration Checklist: a Step by Step Guide to Rehosting with Azure

This article is the last in a series that focuses on Rehosting To Azure. In previous articles, we looked at The Benefits of Rehosting to Azure, How a Cloud Migration Assessment Will Help Avoid Mistakes, and Best Practices for Building a Cloud Migration Strategy.

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Azure SCOM Alert Management

Consolidate alert management into Azure. This tool enables you to see alert rules for every alert type coming from SCOM and into Azure Monitor and eliminate potential issues with the false-positive alerts flooding the Azure Portal. You can manage these alerts with Azure Monitor query rules, or by associating recovery actions using web hooks.

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Best Practices for Building a Cloud Migration Strategy

This article is the third in a series that focuses on Rehosting To Azure. In previous articles, we looked at The Benefits of [...] Read more

How a Cloud Migration Assessment Will Help Avoid Mistakes

Rehosting to Azure can bring incredible improvements to infrastructure agility, scalability, and performance, as we discussed in the previous article in this series [...] Read more
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