Tag: Server

Skype for Business Server 2015: Documentation for IT Pros #business #administration

#business articles 2010


Skype for Business Server 2015

Summary: Explore these links to learn how to implement Skype for Business Server 2015.

Lync is now Skype for Business, a communications and collaboration platform that brings together a client experience inspired by Skype with the enterprise-grade security, compliance, and control of Lync. Skype for Business offers features including presence, IM, voice and video calls, and online meetings. Skype for Business provides a new client experience, a new server release, and updates to the service in Office 365. If users in your organization are already familiar with Skype, they’ll appreciate the power and simplicity of Skype for Business where it’s easy to find and connect with co-workers. If users in your organization are coming to Skype for Business from Lync, they’ll recognize all of the features they already use but in a fresh new interface with simplified controls and new additions. In addition to the new client experience, Skype for Business Server provides several new features to improve manageability of on-premises servers and hybrid solutions.

Skype for Business also supports the Lync client experience so that you can choose a phased upgrade approach to the new client experience for your users. For example, you might want to deploy the Lync client experience until users in your organization are fully trained in the new Skype for Business experience, or until all users are upgraded to the new server.

The following table lists the topics in the Skype for Business Server documentation library, and provides links to other information resources, including downloadable content, blogs, videos, and a contact link that you can use to ask questions and provide feedback.

Writers update articles on a continuing basis as new information becomes available and as users provide feedback. This page will be updated frequently, so check back often.

To get started learning about Skype for Business, you’ll want to read the following articles about new features and functionality:

Before beginning your deployment, be sure to read the planning content: Plan for your Skype for Business Server 2015 deployment .

If you are upgrading from a previous release of Lync Server, be sure to read Plan to upgrade to Skype for Business Server 2015.

Prepare for the dual client experience

If you want to compare the features and capabilities of Skype for Business clients, and then learn more about the dual client experience, be sure to read the following:

Learn about Skype Meeting Broadcast

If you want to know more about Skype Meeting Broadcast, a new Office 365 online service for managing large meetings, see the following topics:

Readiness sessions on Infopedia

The following readiness sessions are available on Infopedia. Registration is required:

You can find training materials, including articles and Quick Start Guides, on the Learning Center .

The following articles describe how to plan for, deploy, and use all the features of Skype for Business Server.

Skype for Business Server 2015 content for IT Pros

You’ll find content for IT Pros on TechNet. The following articles are good places to start:

Skype for Business Online content for Office 365 admins

Information about Skype for Business Online is available at http://support.office.com. If you want to know more about the Office 365 service, and whether a hybrid solution is right for your organization, read the following:

Skype for Business clients

Information about the Skype for Business desktop clients is available at http://support.office.com. Here are some resources that can help you get your end users ready for Skype for Business:

Information for developers

Information for developers can be found on the

Skype Developer Platform includes links to Unified Communications Managed API (UCMA 5.0), Unified Communications Web API (UCWA 2.0), and Skype Web SDK.

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Free Checklist Template #server #checklist #template, #list #templates


A checklist template is a general kind of list that could be prepared by any individual or company who willing to do things exceptionally on time. Basically it’s a list which contains some stuff including the titles of tasks those needs to be done on time or items required to buy from some marketplace, or even more. So in simple words we can say that it’s a usual list that contain everything like a list of points, items tasks with the addition of check boxes those will use by individuals to mark with a tick mark or yes/no after completely finish the task or done the job. To all appearance a checklist can also be notes as a verification tool which lead the people to process their working milestones with a single check.

Benefits of checklist; no doubt a checklist will use as a precise tool which has approach to help the people to do things make them highlight with check for afterward remembrance. It’s crucial for those who usually forget about things, a checklist will make sure that nothing is left, so do your job and marks it from a list with a check. The checklist will assists the people to write everything before starting a task use this checklist for the purpose of comparison verification. People can alter a simple checklist with more compact list via gives it a specific name as per their job, just like; guest checklist, task checklist, cleaning chores checklist, packing checklist, shopping checklist, food checklist and inventory checklist.

A Checklist template is the part of basic documents no matter if you are dealing business activities or making changes in home. A checklist always helps you to arrange all possible or available contents in an order that can easily be remembered. You must have come across with various checklist but have a look on our Free Checklist Template which is totally free. You can download our free checklist template without being registered or paying. Free Checklist template is a perfect template with quality contents and an eye catching theme. We have used bold color theme to attract and make it easier for you to remember it. We have developed free checklist template in MS Word in order to make editing simple for you.

How you can utilize this template? It is the question that you probably looking for. Since your require template is in front of you therefore, you only think about your actual requirements. It is equally important to understand your requirements than finding a right template. If you get a right template but still your requirements are not meeting then it is obvious that you are far away from your original requirements. So, if you are not yet clear about your requirements, then leave this page and make a clear understanding of your requirements. You can further categorize your priorities according to need. This will help you in identifying the exact template that can meet your expectations. Here, I would like to add one more sentence, you cannot find perfect template for your requirements. A very few changes in its title or image or text or in all can make your section ideal.

Before you download this template, please review our Term of Use .


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How to configure Windows Firewall to work with Internet Download Manager (IDM) #windows #server



Cannot start a download in IDM. An error occurs on download start.

How to configure Windows Firewall to work with Internet Download Manager (IDM)

When you installed Windows XP Service Pack 2. you have also installed Windows inbuilt FireWall. Typically its default settings correspond very well to the Internet Download Manager. Most probably no problems will occur at all. However, should you run up against problems, please follow these steps:
1. Open the Windows Firewall settings dialog window: “Start > Settings > Control Panel > Window Firewall” or “Start > Settings > Control Panel > Network and Internet connection > Window Firewall”.

2. On the “General” tab make sure the “Do not allow exceptions option” is not selected.

3. Switch to the “Exceptions” tab with the list of applications that are allowed to access to the Internet. You need to allow access to Internet for “Internet Download Manager” application. To do so, mark the check box related to the IDM application in the list of programs and services: “Internet Download Manager”.

If this application is not listed in the list of exceptions, you need to add it manually. This can be done using the “Add Program” button. See below.

4. A new dialog window opens providing a list of programs that can be added to the previously seen Windows FireWall list of exceptions. Select the IDM application from the list, and confirm adding it to the Windows Firewall list of exceptions by pressing on “OK” button. In case you are not able to see the IDM application in the program list, you have to add them manually. Click the “Browse” button, and find the “IDMan.exe” file (by default “C:\Program Files\Internet Download Manager\IDMan.exe” ).

After these actions IDM will start downloading normally.

1999-2013. All rights reserved.

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Storage server, high storage dedicated server, cloud hosting services #cloud #storage #server, #server #storage


Storage Server

Storing and managing useful information correctly is essential for the behind-the-scenes attainment of the goals of a company. That is why a growing number of both small and big businesses have an increasing need for secure, powerful, and affordable storage server space for keeping their useful information.

Fortunately, at Alnitech we are committed to providing competent web server and storage solutions to assist our customers access the right tools that suit their needs.

We provide an extensive range of state-of-the-art data storage solutions tailored to fit your application requirements, budget, and performance thresholds.

Our storage server plans

At Alnitech, we offer dedicated servers for rent. And, the servers can also be used as dedicated storage servers. These cloud storage servers could solve the storage problems of businesses, especially when bought together with our reliable backup service. For example, a rather big customer could purchase few servers as web servers and one as storage server for backups. Furthermore, since we offer storage servers in different locations, it would be an ideal offsite replicated backup solution.

Depending on your specific requirements, we can offer a dedicated storage server plan that sufficiently meets your storage solutions needs. For example, one of the most popular options is the Dedicated I plan, which can be slightly modified to fit your storage server needs.

The Dedicated I plan is normally shipped with the following default features: SUPERMICRO E3-1230 v2/v3 8GB with 1TB HDD. However, it could be configured to have 4x4TB HDDs, which gives 16TB of raw data storage or 8TB of mirrored (RAID 10) data storage, or to have 4x512GB SSD, which gives very fast 1TB storage solutions.

Why choose Alnitech’s data storage solutions

At Alnitech, we are committed to our customers’ success. Using only the latest enterprise-grade hardware, we accelerate their data and storage servers needs to generate results that increase their bottom line. Importantly, we ensure that the data of our customers is kept safe and secure. We frequently monitor our storage server infrastructure and replace faulty drives and disjointed processes before they cause any damage.

  • Excellent service and support

    We have a team of well-trained and committed experts who are passionate about all-things excellent. Your storage server issues will be handled quickly and professionally 24/7. Therefore, you can forget about your storage servers worries and focus on the things that really matter for the realization of your business dreams.

  • 99.9% uptime guarantee

    At Alnitech, we have built our business around providing quality and unmatched hosting services to customers. Specifically, our impeccable storage solutions offer high availability with peak performance at all times for your web hosting needs. We have invested in end-to-end network redundancy to prevent data loss from taking place. Furthermore, our sophisticated load balanced storage server clusters guarantee minimal downtime of our servers. So, you can rest assured that optimal performance will be achieved, 24/7/365.

  • Customized storage solutions

    An Alnitech expert can assist establish the best dedicated data storage solution that resonates well with your needs and preferences. We’ll set up a data storage hosting solution suitably customized to your budget and storage management requirements.

    Furthermore, we can assist customers build clusters on top of our storage infrastructure. We offer private 1Gbps interconnect between our servers that would allow connecting multiple storage servers into reliable networks by means of network protocols (iSCSI, Red Hat Global File System, Microsoft Cluster Shared Volumes, Oracle Cluster File System).

    Buy our storage server solutions

    Do you want to get the best resources for your storage servers to meet your present and future needs? Do you want to maximize the value of your business by preserving your digital assets in a secure and affordable storage solutions environment? Do you want to boost your projects with high storage dedicated server solutions?

    If any of the above captures your needs, then you are in the right place. At Alnitech, our storage dedicated server solutions are designed with the needs of our customers in mind. So, you can rely on our quality storage servers to unlock your potential and move forward much faster.

    Today, buy one of our data storage servers solutions and you will be amazed with their consistent and reliable performance. Do not miss this wonderful opportunity!

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    We always trust the reliability of our datacenter.

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    We always offer a solution that reflects your needs.

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    We always follow new technologies and develop new solutions.

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    We always show the breakdown of final charges before you pay and provide complete product description.

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    We always communicate with a smile.

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    We always give you all the facts.

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    We always treat our clients as partners.

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  • Orange Pi Zero – armbian #ubuntu #dedicated #server


    Orange Pi Zero

    Warning: nightly downloads are automated untested builds and no end user support is provided for them!

    If you find our project useful, then we d really appreciate it if you d consider contributing to the project however you can. Donating is the easiest you can use PayPal, Bitcoin, Amazon.de wish list or bank transfer.

    We haven t set up our donation pages to suggest a donation amount, instead we d like you to just donate whatever you feel comfortable with whether it s little or a lot, we will certainly appreciate it!

    • serial console gadget on the OTG port is avaliable after the system boots up. Please make sure that board is properly powered (i.e. with microUSB Y cable or via GPIO pins) because a standard PC USB port will not provide enough current to the board
    • it is possible to boot Armbian images from USB storage if a proper mainline u-boot is programmed to the onboard SPI flash

    Known issues

    Legacy kernel images (all boards) ( default branch)

    • HDMI output (if exists) supports only limited number of predefined resolutions
    • TV Out doesn t work as expected (only PAL/NTSC resolution, overscanning, no h3disp support, notes for OPi Zero )
    • 1-Wire protocol, reading out DHT11/DHT22 sensors or S/PDIF requires setting the minimum CPU frequency to 480MHz or higher
    • Hardware accelerated video decoding supports only limited number of video formats
    • Out of memory (OOM) issues are possible due to a kernel bug

    Mainline kernel images (all boards) ( next / dev branches)

    • No Mali drivers
    • No hardware accelerated video decoding
    • schedutil CPU governor may cause clicks and pops on audio output change(d) to ondemand to work around this issue

    Board: Orange Pi Zero

    • Onboard wireless module (XR819) has poor software support so wireless connection issues are expected
    • Onboard wireless module (XR819) is not supported on mainline releases
    • board revision 1.4 report false high CPU temperatures .

    Quick start | Documentation

    Make sure you have a good reliable SD card and a proper power supply. Archives can be uncompressed with 7-Zip on Windows, Keka on OS X and 7z on Linux (apt-get install p7zip-full). RAW images can be written with Etcher (all OS).

    Insert SD card into a slot and power the board. (First) boot (with DHCP) takes up to 35 seconds with a class 10 SD Card and cheapest board.

    Login as root on HDMI / serial console or via SSH and use password 1234. You will be prompted to change this password at first login. Next you will be asked to create a normal user account that is sudo enabled (beware of default QWERTY keyboard settings at this stage).

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    SBS 2011 Backup Modification #microsoft #server #os, #disaster #recovery


    SBS 2011 Backup Modification

    Boy, you Savants can be a bit touchy 🙂 You will have to forgive me, I did not see where you stated

    The ONLY configurable option is the ability to exclude non-system partitions or folders. The ability to use the backup for bare metal restores and system state restore is built-in and enabled. You cannot turn it off even if you wanted to.

    Yes I have used other backup software where these option are selectable. Acronis for example.

    I do stand corrected on the system state. It is on for both servers in my comparison, however bare metal is NOT. I did not setup the configuration for backup on the server I wish to change. I did on my own company server. The only way I can find to make the change to add bare metal is to delete the backup and recreate it. This would I believe require me to format my drives thereby erasing my past backups.

    See attached screen shots from two server. One with and one without Bare Metal.

    Overall: Level 77

    Microsoft Server OS 27

    Disaster Recovery 3

    Boy, you Savants can be a bit touchy 🙂
    Very sorry. Though I had mentioned it a couple of times and you weren’t noticing. I was trying to make it noticeable, not ‘scream at you’. Again sorry for that.

    It looks like you may be using Windows Server Backup utility and not the native SBS backup (recommended)? The latter is run from the SBS console. Might that be the case? If so I apologize the options are different.

    Overall: Level 77

    Microsoft Server OS 27

    Disaster Recovery 3

    To add to above: The attached is a typical display of the backup properties when using the SBS backup. This by default includes system state and bare metal restore. It is strongly recommended that you choose the SBS specific backup on SBS. I suspect this explains the difference between what I was saying and what you were asking. If that is the case the following link outlines the SBS utility:

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    Project server hosting #project #server #hosting



    Mono has an implementation of ASP.NET 2.0, ASP.NET MVC and ASP.NET AJAX.

    Mono’s ASP.NET implementations supports two kinds of applications:

    • Web Forms (Web Applications infrastructure).
    • Web Services (the SOAP-based RPC system).

    Status and tests for ASP.NET 2.0 are available in our ASPTests page.

    Running ASP.NET applications

    To run your ASP.NET applications with Mono, you have three classes of options:

    • Apache hosting: use mod_mono. a module that allows Apache to serve ASP.NET applications.
    • FastCGI hosting: use the FastCGI hosting if you have a web server that supports the FastCGI protocol (for example Nginx ) for extending the server. You also may use a web server that only has support for CGI using cgi-fcgi .
    • XSP: this is a simple way to get started, a lightweight and simple webserver written in C#.

    For deploying applications, we recommend the use of the mod_mono or FastCGI approaches, as that will give you all the configuration options and flexibility that come with using Apache or a FastCGI server.

    For quickly getting started, get familiar with Mono and ASP.NET, XSP is the ideal solution. Keep in mind that XSP is a very limited server and is only useful to get acquainted with ASP.NET and Mono, it only support HTTP 1.0 and does not provide much extensibility or configuration.

    More advaned users can use the HttpListener and the ASP.NET hosting to create their own hosts for ASP.NET applications.

    ASP.NET hosting with Apache

    The mod_mono Apache module is used to run ASP.NET applications within the Apache web server.

    The mod_mono module runs within an Apache process and passes all the requests to ASP.NET applications to an external Mono process that actually hosts your ASP.NET applications. The external ASP.NET host is called “mod-mono-server” and is part of the XSP module.

    To use this, you must download and install the mod_mono and xsp components of Mono. mod_mono contains the actual Apache module, and xsp contains the actual ASP.NET hosting engine, both are available from our download page .

    See the mod_mono page for details on installation and configuration.

    ASP.NET hosting with Nginx

    Nginx is a high-performance HTTP server which support running ASP.NET and ASP.NET MVC web applications through FastCGI protocol. See the FastCGI Nginx page for details on installation and configuration.

    ASP.NET hosting with XSP

    XSP is a standalone web server written in C# that can be used to run your ASP.NET applications with minimal effort. XSP works under both the Mono and Microsoft runtimes. The code is available from our download page (look for XSP web server) or from the git repository (module name: xsp).

    The easiest way to start XSP is to run it from within the root directory of your application. It will serve requests on port 8080. Place additional assemblies in the bin directory. Other XSP options can be set on the command line, such as the application directory and the port to listen on.

    XSP comes with a set of pages, controls and web services that you can use to test the server and see what ASP.NET looks like.

    For example, once you install XSP, you can try some samples like this:

    You can now browse to http://localhost:8080 and see various sample programs

    SSL support in XSP

    XSP supports SSL and TLS Client Certificates. For further details about setting it up, see the UsingClientCertificatesWithXSP document.


    Applications can be configured through the web.config file, the full documentation is available from MSDN. and also a Mono-specific version is available on this site here .

    Additionally, you can configure Mono-specific ASP.NET settings (to have applications that behave differently depending on the operating system they are deployed in) using the ASP.NET Settings Mapping engine.

    Other extensions

    Check out ASP.NET Modules for details on how to support deflate/gzip encodings and authentication.


    By default xsp and xsp2 run in Release mode, which means that debugging line-number information will not be available in stack traces when errors occur.

    To obtain line numbers in stack traces you need to do two things:

    1. Enable Debug code generation in your page. 2. Run Mono with the –debug command line option.

    You must enable debug code generation in your page using the Debug=”true” in the top of your page, or setting the compilation flag in Web.config (compilation option ).

    Use the –debug command line option to Mono, this is done by setting the MONO_OPTIONS environment variable, like this:

    To do the same with the Apache mod_mono module, use the MonoDebug true directive in your apache configuration file.

    Supported Versions

    Mono supports ASP.NET 2.0, ASP.NET AJAX and a handful of 3.5 controls.


    Mono’s ASP.NET does not implement the following features:

    • Precompiled updatable web sites.
    • WebParts APIs.

    Work in Progress

    git access

    Users interested in the latest version of mod_mono and xsp can retrieve these from our public git repository. The module names are mod_mono and xsp respectively. You will also need to check out the mcs module as the System.Web classes are in mcs/class/System.Web.


    There is work in progress on an ASP.NET Designer the designer will eventually be integrated into the MonoDevelop IDE .

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    How To Get Your Very Own Free SSL Certificate #get #ssl #certificate #from #server


    Popular Topics


    Top Deals

    A Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate helps us to encrypt the data being transmitted via the Internet. It will come in handy if you are running a blog or a personal webpage and logging into them from an unsecured public access WiFi Hotspot (such as coffee shops, airports etc).

    SSL certificates encrypt the login data before transmitting them to your ISP/server making it harder for eavesdroppers to break in. That s exactly why banks, financial institutions, ecommerce sites etc. use SSL for securing login information, user identity information and credit card data.

    SSL certificates cost a lot if bought from providers like Verisign, GoDaddy etc. For those us who don t run mission critical portals, that is not an option. Let us see how to get free SSL certificates from StartSSL .

    Obtaining The Free SSL Certificate

    A simple signup form kickstarts the process of getting the free SSL certificate. All the details, including home/company address to phone number are mandatory requirements. Once the signup is done, an email with the verification code is sent to the email address you specified.

    After entering the verification code, the application is sent to the second stage of verification by the StartSSL team and we are advised to wait for about six hours before being contacted by their team.

    However, I got a confirmation mail in less than 5 minutes with a link to the account. Remember, this email is good for only 24 hours from the time it has been received, so act fast.

    Installing The SSL Certificate

    StartSSL offers free certificates with no holds barred and with absolutely no hidden charges. You can choose either a 128 bit or 256 bit key for encryption.

    We have the option to choose between a high grade or medium grade private key. Once the type of key is selected, it is generated and we are taken to the installation page.

    Once the install button is clicked, the certificate is installed. There is also an option to download and store the certificate to an external disk and I strongly advise you to do it.

    Now that the certificate is installed in the browser, we can just click on the Authenticate option to enter the control panel. No need for an username and password. We are identified by way of the unique private key and hence it is very important to back it up securely.

    Validating The Domain Name

    After authentication, we can start the process of validating the domain name the email address with the help of the Validations Wizard. From the dropdown, you can choose the appropriate option. Let us go ahead and validate a domain name.

    Once we enter the domain name, an email address has to be associated with it to confirm domain ownership.

    Once the email address is verified, the domain is validated. However, this being a free SSL certificate, StartSSL requires the renewal of this validation every 30 days, which involves the same process.

    Certificate Wizard

    I chose the Webserver certificate since I am planning to use it for my WordPress installation. We need to enter a password to create a private key and then we have to enter the subdomain where the certificate will be used. Subdomain is a mandatory requirement.

    The certificate created will support the domain and the sub domain. As the final step, we now have the text box displaying the encoded certificate information. Copy the content, paste it in a notepad file and rename the file as ssl.crt

    The same page also has links to download the intermediate and root certificates. Download them to the same folder.

    Uploading Files To Server

    Navigate to the How to Install section in the FAQ section. Choose your server setup, for example Apache and you will have the code to modify the http.conf or ssl.conf file. Copy it and update the file in the root folder of the domain in your webserver.

    From the same page download the ca.pem sub.class1.server.ca.pem files. Upload all the files to the root folder and now we have the SSL enabled connection at the website.

    Final Thoughts

    Please exercise caution with the last step and ensure that all the directories (marked by arrows in the image above) follow the same naming convention of your ISP or location in your webserver. And do remember to validate the domain every 30 days to enjoy the security provided by the free SSL certificate.

    Are there any other services offering free SSL certificates? If you know of any, do share them with us.

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    OHosti – Best Free Unlimited Hosting cPanel – Powerful Unlimited Free Reseller Hosting WHM


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    Azure vs #cloud #server #vs #dedicated #server


    Microsoft Azure vs. Amazon Web Services: Cloud Comparison

    Azure and AWS Compared

    Is your enterprise considering moving to cloud-based Infrastructure as a Service? Amazon and Azure are the two primary players, but which one is right for the needs of your business?

    It’s been 10 years since the introduction of Amazon Web Services (AWS). In that time a lot has changed about AWS and about the competitive landscape around it. One of those competitors, Microsoft Azure, has been operating since 2010. That’s not as long as AWS of course, but six years is still quite a while, and Microsoft has a history of making significant improvements to any product it really puts it’s mind to and starts iterating on.

    Both services have had enough time to create flexible, stable, and profitable products. At a high level, you will be comparing AWS, a known stable and reliable choice with a wide array of compelling offerings, against Microsoft Azure, a cloud offering by the authors of many of the closed source tools you are probably already using Visual Studio, SQL Server, and indeed Windows itself. With those two choices in mind, you can bet the decision won’t be easy.

    The Basics

    Amazon groups its Infrastructure as a Service offerings into the four categories of Compute, Storage and Content Delivery, Database, and Networking. All of those resources are used subject to Amazon’s security and identity services, which include Amazon hosted Active Directory, AWS Identity Management, AWS Certificate manager for managing SSL/TLS certificates, and even hardware-based key storage and management through AWS CloudHSM. You can monitor your infrastructure resource usage through management tools like Amazon CloudWatch, AWS Cloudtrail for tracking user activity and API usage, and AWS Config for tracking resource inventory and changes.

    Azure is going to be able to cover all of those broad categories, which it will call Compute, Data Management (which includes database) and Performance, and Networking. It will secure these services using a combination Azure Active Directory, Active Directory Federation Services, Multi-Factor Auth, and a sophisticated Role Based Access control model that it uses to extend a modern security architecture into the cloud where Group Policy doesn’t always make sense. Azure also has a number of services and integrations for in-depth monitoring and alerting on infrastructure performance metrics and logs.


    For some customers, the simplicity of licensing is a big part of the attraction of moving to the cloud. You are automatically charged for licenses you use based on usage. On the other hand, big companies probably already have lots of expensive licenses for the application servers they want to run on Windows like SQL Server or BizTalk and others. You’ll be glad to know that moving to the cloud isn’t automatically going to mean that those are wasted investments.

    Microsoft offer license mobility for qualifying application servers, so it’s important to find out ahead of time if your application is going be eligible for license mobility, and to keep in mind that Windows Server itself is not. Consider for instance running an on-premises Windows Server with SQL Server. If you spin up a VM in the cloud running the same stack, you will be paying for two Windows Server licenses since that license is charged by usage and it is not eligible for mobility. The SQL Server license, however, is eligible, and you can use the license you already paid for to run your SQL Server instance in the cloud.

    To learn more about License Mobility, you can read about it with Azure here and with AWS here .

    The Hybrid Cloud

    If you have the luxury of developing new apps, or even an entirely new startup from scratch, you probably don’t have to worry about a bunch of legacy infrastructure and users that you have to accommodate during your transition to the cloud. You can just do everything in the cloud from the start, and that’s really great.

    For most enterprises, though, the move to the cloud is a transition, and many of them simply have no plans to run everything entirely in the cloud. There are lots of reasons why that might be, but for them, their cloud journey is likely to end with some things running in the cloud, but others still running on servers in their own data centers fully under their own control.

    Microsoft has seen this pattern and responded with strong support for hybrid cloud configurations. With a hybrid cloud you can run cloud applications and deploy infrastructure assets and applications using a cloud model, but you can choose to use your on-premises compute resources when appropriate and use the cloud when needed. Crucially, a hybrid cloud allows you to transition between the two seamlessly.

    With platforms like Azure StorSimple, Hybrid SQL Server, Azure Stack and others, Microsoft clearly has the advantage in the Hybrid Cloud space. Amazon knows they need to make headway here (Fortune quotes Amazon CIO acknowledging work to be done), but they’re still playing catch up. Amazon does offer a few hybrid solutions like Storage Gateway, DynamoDB Local, and OpsWorks, but for now, the Microsoft has the upper hand.

    Government in the Cloud

    Private companies aren’t the only ones looking to save money. If you are an IT leader in government thinking about moving to the cloud, you should know that despite the heavy regulatory environment you operate in, it can be done. Both Amazon and Microsoft have dedicated Government areas of their respective clouds, cordoned off from the rest of their workloads, to ensure that your strict compliance needs can be met.

    Both government clouds tout their compliance with ITAR, DISA, HIPAA, CJIS, FIPS, etc. etc. and both are physically accessible only by screened U.S. persons. You can find case studies of their usage here for Amazon and here for Azure .

    Right now Amazon’s Gov cloud offering may have a slight edge just because it’s been operating longer and has more government clients that know how to deal with them. In this business, people that know how to shuffle the proper paperwork to get a request approved is no small matter, and Amazon has that relationship with more agencies than Azure right now.

    That being said, Azure does have the proper certifications, and some agencies have made the jump with them, so it can definitely be done. So if you find the rest of Azure’s offerings compelling, by all means, go for it.

    Microsoft Shops

    Microsoft has always had a focus on Enterprise customers, and as the people who write Windows and most of the other platforms these clients are using, it makes sense that their Azure integration story is good.

    Microsoft is also ensuring that Visual Studio and TFS integration are excellent and that Active Directory integrates well. You can use the same Active Directory accounts you have now to sign in to the Azure cloud offerings like Office 365 or your Azure SQL instances, seamlessly.

    For Microsoft shops, the cloud offered by the vendor of your platforms of choice, and the integrations it offers, can be a compelling argument.

    Open Source

    For Open Source shops, until recently the thought of using Azure as your cloud vendor was either impossible or at least a little odd. Microsoft hasn’t always had a great, or even a good, relationship with the open source community, but recently you might have noticed that relationship is changing.

    That bad relationship allowed Amazon AWS to open up a significant lead over Azure in the Open Source cloud hosting space. AWS has been Linux-friendly from the start and didn’t come from a history that was suspicious of open source. So if you’re an open source user, you’re probably going to be pretty comfortable with AWS and with all of the open source tools integrations it offers.

    PowerShell and .NET Core are open sourced and taking pull requests on GitHub. SQL Server runs on Linux and Hyper-V will be running Docker. The trend continues in Azure where you can now run Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Apache Hadoop clusters. Azure and Microsoft, in general, are really trying to embrace open source in one of the biggest strategy shifts we’ve seen out of Redmond in a long time.

    Amazon probably still has the upper hand here since it’s history with open source is long, and because Azure really does work so much more seamlessly if you are using Microsoft development tools than without them. But if you want to run open source in the cloud, don’t dismiss Azure without taking a look first to see if it will suit your needs because that gap is closing fast, and soon may be too close to call.


    Any cloud platform vendor is going to argue that you can save money moving to the cloud. Unfortunately, making meaningful predictions of the actual cost of any actual workload can be fiendishly complex, and some of the considerations have as much to do with user behavior (shutting down VMs when not in use) as the actual workloads you want to run. Trying to make cost generalizations to help you estimate costs would probably be meaningless at best. Both Amazon and Azure have come up with provided cost calculators, which you can find at the links above.

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