Azure

Creating a Docker artifact for Windows Server in Azure DevTest Labs

Over the past 12 months I have been working with customers on hackfests. We often work with organizations that have highly secured workstations and networks. This proves to be a problem as during the hackfest we need to be using the latest releases of software, often preview releases, and also need full access Microsoft Azure. In a recent scenario we needed to work with Visual Studio 2017 and Windows Server containers. The hackfest participants laptops were running Windows 7, an older version of Visual Studio and had limited outbound internet access. To ensure participants could work with the latest technologies…
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Retrieving and using Azure Container Registry credentials in an Azure Resource Manager Template

I recently created a set of Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates ( https://github.com/marrobi/RancherOnAzure/ ) to simplify the deployment of Rancher ( http://rancher.com/rancher/ ) to Azure. Rancher is an Open Source container management platform –  https://github.com/rancher/rancher. Rancher offers the facility to connect a container registry ( https://docs.rancher.com/rancher/v1.6/en/environments/registries/ ) so that images can be pulled for deployment. As part of my deployment I wanted to provide users with an Azure Container Registry (ACR) instance already connected to Rancher. My Rancher templates consist of a top level template with a number of nested child templates. ACR would be a child template. My challenge…
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Using Infrastructure as Code to provision a Docker container on Azure

Over the past 12 months I have spent many weeks working with customers migrating Linux based workloads to Azure. When we turn up on a customer site we often need to get OSS projects up and running on Azure as quickly as possible. The projects are usually a component of a larger solution that we need to build around as the week progresses. Requirements Need to get the project up and running to enable developers to start coding, Need to deploy multiple instances of the component so that they can be used in parallel, Need to be able to easily…
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Using Docker Machine to provision a VM running Docker on Azure

Using Docker Machine to provision a VM running Docker on Azure Docker Machine facilitates the creation and management of virtual hosts running Docker engine https://docs.docker.com/machine/overview/ . This could be a host running within a VM on your local machine, via technologies such as Hyper-V or in a public cloud such as Microsoft Azure. Docker Machine uses drivers to enable deployment to different platforms During this post we will provision a VM running Docker on Microsoft Azure and deploying containers to the VM. We will use the Azure driver for Docker Machine which is documented here https://docs.docker.com/machine/drivers/azure/ . Docker Machine facilitates…
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DevOps Days London Hackathon Prep – Stepping out of my comfort zone.

DevOps Days London is fast approaching. The main conference runs from Tuesday 19th – Wednesday 20th April 2016, however, on Thursday 21st April there is a one day Hackathon which Microsoft is supporting. From the DevOps Days London website:  "This isn’t a traditional Hackathon, we are looking to test the principles of DevOps against the clock and at the same time attempt to build a production quality Minimum Viable Product (MVP) that could facilitate the giving of small (micro) donations to a variety of charities so easy it becomes a way of life. The concept is to create a facility…
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Build 2016: Day 1 Keynote – At a glance

I’ve been looking forward to hearing the announcements that will be made at Build, especially it is the first Build since I’ve been a Microsoft employee. Unfortunately I’m not in San Francisco this week so this blog post was written from my living room while watching the keynote. I have outlined the key themes without going to go into a great deal of detail as many of the topics discussed are outside my area of expertise and there have been many more comprehensive blog posts written already about each specific area (I don’t believe in reinventing the wheel). Windows 10 Anniversary Update…
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Introduction to Azure Resource Manager Templates for the IT Pro

The Problem Conflict between software development teams and IT operations is familiar to many of us. As IT professionals we are often faced with support tickets for applications that are: Sluggish Don’t install Randomly stop working This could happen randomly, or more commonly occurs after an application update. Have you ever escalated an issue to the application developers or vendor and had a reply the lines of “You have installed it incorrectly” or “Your hardware is incorrectly configured? It a situation that I have been in a number of times in the past and the resolution to the conflict is often a…
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PowerShell function to enable WinRM over HTTPS on an Azure Resource Manager VM

You may have seen my previous posts detailing how to enable WinRM over HTTPS on an Azure Resource Manager VM. I have now collated all the different bits of script and creates a single PowerShell function. The function is called Configure-WinRMHTTPS, and is as follows: Once the function is loaded you must login to Azure. Then the function can be executed: My next post will cover submitting the function to the PowerShell Gallery.

Create a Custom Script Extension for an Azure Resource Manager VM using PowerShell

Following on from my previous two posts regarding WinRM over HTTPS the next stage was to automate the steps that needed to be carried out inside the Azure VM. In my original post I had a mix of PowerShell, command prompt and copy and paste! Andy Slowey provided me with the following PowerShell to optimize the WinRM over HTTPS server side configuration: In search of going one better, I decided to find a way to avoid the need to use RDP so that the whole process could be automated. Scripts can be executed within an Azure VM without logging into…
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Create a Network Security Group Rule using PowerShell

My last post, http://www.techdiction.com/2016/02/11/configuring-winrm-over-https-to-enable-powershell-remoting/, covered enabling WinRM over HTTPS on an Azure VM. After forwarding the steps to colleagues it was pointed out that some of the steps could be simplified with some PowerShell. My next couple of posts will cover how different parts of my initial process could be automated, starting with creation of the network security group rule. I want to say thanks to Andy Slowey, Technology Specialist at Microsoft Research who suggested some improvements, carried out some testing and ironed out some of the bugs in my PowerShell. The PowerShell below creates the network security group rule for…
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