Overview in AzureArc

At Ignite 2019 Microsoft announced the new service AzureArc. A service to connect non-Azure virtual machines connect to the cloud service and use the power of azure in your onPremise environment. At this point, AzureArc is in preview with a small set of features, but let’s take a look at the new service and the future possibilities.

What is Azure Arc

With AzureArc Microsoft build the possibility to connect other services with Microsoft Azure. You can connect different virtual machines, Kubernetes clusters and data services with Azure and services build in.

A simple example

An IT department as a heterogeneous infrastructure with some virtual machines on VMware infrastructure, some machines on AWS and some services in Microsoft Azure. The problem is, that we have 3 different management areas for administration.

  1. all the time you need to think about where you can find the option
  2. you need to manage different user repositories
  3. different right management across the different management areas

 

With AzureArc Microsoft promises a view over all machines, services and capabilities in your environment.

First look in

Environment to test AzureArc

The greate on AzureArc is you can create an easy environment to test it.

In my case I installed a Windows Server 2012 R2 in my VirtualBox with an internet connection, that’s all 🙂

2020-02-10 22_38_41-Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager

Supported operating systems

In the preview, there is a very low set of supported operating systems. Microsoft is started with the following two operating systems:

  • Windows Server 2012 R2 and newer
  • Ubuntu 16.04 and 18.04

In the future I’am sure, Microsoft will extend the availability of a higher set of operating systems.

Requisites to take a look

Demo environment

To connect a server with AzureArc there are two requisites:

Network Configuration

In your network configuration it must be allowed to connect to the Azure Services via HTTPs and SSL. At least the following services should be allowed:

2020-02-10 22_19_50-Azure Arc für Server_ Übersicht _ Microsoft Docs

In most cases the connections are allowed.

Installed agent

To try AzureArc you can use the easy way and install the client via GUI. You only need to follow these steps (copy Microsoft documentation):

2020-02-10 22_27_43-Schnellstart_ Verbinden von Computern mit Azure mithilfe von Azure Arc für Serve

After you install and configure the client successfully you see the connected server in your Azure environment.

2020-02-10 22_40_22-alterdc - Microsoft Azure

Next Steps to play with AzureArc

Policy and Template

After the virtual machine is integrated into Azure with AzureArc you get the possibility to make a template definition and control all or VM, across different environments. As an example, you can check the machine is a part of your backup system and if not it will fix it automatically. Als you can check the DSC state of a group or single machine.

2020-02-13 08_43_10-Assignment Details - Microsoft Azure

 

Log analytics

log-analytics-agent-01

To integrate your virtual machines more in Aure you can use the Agent called “Microsoft Monitoring Agent”. With this Agent, you integrate your environment in Azure Log Analytics and gives you the capability to store collected logs over your environment in the same place and build queries and monitoring processes in one place.

Start with Log Analytic Agent: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/log-analytics-agent

 

Future view

I’am excited about the next releases, especially in the Kubernetes features across different environments. In some demo videos, I saw the possibility to deploy an Azure SQL container in your onPremise environment. Let’s see how long we need to wait for the features will be in public preview.

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