Episode 248 - Updates from Ignite 2018

by Cynthia Kreng September 26, 2018

A whole bunch of Azure updates were announced at Ignite so Cynthia, Cale and Sujit try to cover as much as possible in 30 minutes!

Media file: https://azpodcast.blob.core.windows.net/episodes/Episode248.mp3



Azure Policy for Azure DevOps is in preview

Ensure your applications are always compliant with Azure Policy native integration with Azure DevOps. It surfaces policy violations predeployment and policy compliance assessment during post-deployment. Plus, author and create policy in Azure DevOps to take advantage of its source control and versioning capabilities for continuous iteration and improvement. 



Azure Blueprints is in preview

Design and build apps that meet organizational standards with Azure Blueprints, which enables quick creation of governed subscriptions. Azure Blueprints is composed of artifacts such as templates, policies, scripts, and virtual machine (VM) images. Configure Azure Blueprints to lay foundational blocks like networking and naming conventions while getting flexibility in resource selection and application design. 


Azure Resource Graph is in preview

Explore all your cloud resources and more effectively manage your cloud inventory with Azure Resource Graph. Access resource information across all your environments through querying capabilities for deeper insights from your resources. Get insights by using rich aggregation and parsing of detailed properties. Use Resource Graph via the Azure portal, PowerShell, or CLI. 



Azure Cost Management is in preview in the Azure portal

Take advantage of Azure Cost Management, which is enabled by default in the Azure portal. Use it for free to manage spend on all your Azure resources. 



Azure Service Fabric and Azure Service Fabric mesh updates

Focus on building mission-critical applications and let Azure solve the distributed microservices system challenges such as reliability, scalability, management, and latency with Azure Service Fabric. With this release, access multiple updates to Service Fabric (Service Fabric, Service Fabric mesh [preview], and Service Fabric standalone), which incorporate new features and improve existing functionality. 



Video Indexer is generally available

Take advantage of generally available Video Indexer, the artificial intelligence (AI)-based media metadata extraction service. Access additional functionality included with this release such as new machine learning models, a new RESTful API version, and a new connector version for Azure Logic Apps and Microsoft Flow. General availability (GA) pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



New regions are available for the Av2-series in Azure HDInsight

Use Azure HDInsight for your open source analytics, and then take advantage of an increased range of VM infrastructure with the Av2-series VMs. They're available in all regions where the Av2-series Azure Virtual Machines are available. Read more about HDInsight on Azure updates.



Azure Key Vault supports new advanced key lengths

Safeguard and control cryptographic keys and other secrets used by cloud apps and services with Azure Key Vault. Then, take advantage of support for new advanced key types that are now generally available in Key Vault. Pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 


Azure SQL Data Warehouse updates

Quickly implement a high-performance, globally available, and low-cost cloud data warehouse with Azure SQL Data Warehouse. Then, take advantage of these updates.


User-defined maintenance windows

This new feature seamlessly integrates the Azure Service Health planned maintenance notifications with Resource Health monitor services. Choose a preferred maintenance window based on your workstreams. Plan around the scheduled maintenance events SQL Data Warehouse uses to roll out new features, upgrades, and patches.


Intelligent insights

Access intelligent performance insights within the Azure portal and create rich, customizable dashboard widgets with SQL Operations Studio. With built-in intelligence delivering recommendations from SQL Data Warehouse, ensure your data warehouse is consistently optimized for performance. Get the current state of your data warehouse, telemetry, and recommendations for your active workload on a daily cadence. These free insights are tightly integrated with Azure Advisor and are automatically available through the portal. 



Resource name change and GUID migration

Effective November 1, 2018, GUIDs and resource names for the storage meters for SQL Data Warehouse customers will change.



Azure Database for MySQL and Azure Database for PostgreSQL backup storage pricing update

With Azure Database for MySQL and Azure Database for PostgreSQL, easily adjust resources and respond faster to market and customer demands with built-in high availability and the ability to elastically scale compute and storage independently—in seconds. For a limited time, backup storage that exceeds provisioned storage is currently being offered free. Effective November 1, 2018, backup storage that exceeds provisioned storage will incur costs charged in GB per month. Read more about Azure Database for MySQL and Azure Database for PostgreSQL on Azure updates.



More services protected with Azure Security Center

Strengthen your cloud security posture and protect against threats with Azure Security Center. Protection is now extended to more services across infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) services. Protection for Azure App Service is generally available, and protection for Azure Database for PostgreSQL and Azure Database for MySQL is in preview. Pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 


M-series in Azure Virtual Machines is generally available in more regions

Take advantage of the M-series VMs in Azure Virtual Machines and get up to 128 cores and 3.8 TiB of memory, which provide unparalleled computational performance to support large in-memory workloads. The M-series is now generally available in UK West and North Europe—find out when it will be in your region. 



Azure Managed Disks updates

Create a managed disk by specifying the type of storage and the disk size you need. Then, Azure Storage will create and manage it for you. Now, choose among new Azure Managed Disks sizes.


Larger sizes are in preview

Get increased storage capacity and performance with larger Managed Disks sizes that are in preview in a limited number of regions. With the new sizes, significantly expand storage capacity while simplifying management and achieving better performance. 



Azure Ultra SSD is in preview

Take advantage of Ultra SSD (preview) for your most demanding data-intensive workloads. Get unprecedented and extremely scalable performance with sub-millisecond latency. Request access to the preview and learn more. 



Azure Standard SSD is generally available

Use Standard SSD for low input/output per second (IOPS) workloads that need consistent performance. Get better availability, consistency, reliability, and latency compared to Standard HDD disks. GA pricing for Standard SSD sizes E10–E50 will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



Speech Service in Azure Cognitive Services is generally available

Use Azure Cognitive Services to infuse your apps, websites, and bots with intelligent algorithms to see, hear, speak, understand, and interpret your user needs through natural methods of communication. Then, take advantage of the generally available Speech Service, which combines these capabilities: Speech to Text, Text to Speech, Custom Speech, Speech Translation, and Custom Voice. GA pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



Azure Data Box updates

From terabytes to petabytes, choose the Azure Data Box device that works for your migration needs. Your choices now include updated and new options.


Azure Data Box is generally available

Use generally available Azure Data Box with 100 TB capacity when transferring over a network isn't an option. Pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



Azure Data Box Gateway is in preview

Azure Data Box Gateway (preview) is available as a VM for use with Hyper-V or VMware. 


Azure Data Box Heavy is in preview

For larger data sets up to 1 PB, use Azure Data Box Heavy (preview). 



New zone-redundant Azure VPN Gateway and Azure ExpressRoute gateways are generally available

With added support for Azure Availability Zones, there's now increased resiliency, scalability, and higher availability to Azure virtual network gateways. GA pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



Azure ExpressRoute global reach is in preview

Use Azure ExpressRoute to create private connections between Azure datacenters and infrastructure on your premises or in a colocation environment. Then, connect your on-premises networks via ExpressRoute through the Microsoft global network using ExpressRoute global reach (preview). For example, you'll be able to connect your private datacenters together through ExpressRoute connections and your cross-datacenter traffic will traverse through the Microsoft network.  



Azure Virtual Network updates

Get an isolated and highly secure environment to run your VMs and applications with Azure Virtual Network. Then, take advantage of new capabilities.



TAP is in preview

Continuously mirror traffic from a virtual network to a packet collector with Virtual Network terminal access point (TAP) (preview). The mirrored traffic is a deep copy of the inbound and outbound VM network traffic and can be streamed to a destination IP endpoint or an internal load balancer in the same virtual network or peered virtual network. Pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 



Public IP prefix capability is in preview

Create a range of static public IP addresses with the public IP prefix capability (preview). Azure allocates a contiguous range of addresses based on the size of the prefix you specify. When you create a public IP address from the prefix, you're then assigned a static IP address from the range.



Azure Firewall is generally available

Protect your Azure Virtual Network resources with Azure Firewall, a managed cloud-based network security service. It's a fully stateful service with built-in high availability and unrestricted cloud scalability. GA pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 


Standard Microsoft tier in Azure Content Delivery Network is generally available

Send audio, video, apps, photos, and other files to your customers faster and more reliably, using the servers closest to each user with Azure Content Delivery Network. Then, use the Standard Microsoft tier to get 62 content delivery network (CDN) POPs in 57 countries with 16 regional caches from the Microsoft global edge and CDN. GA pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. R


Azure Virtual WAN is generally available

Use a simple, unified, global connectivity, and security platform for deploying large scale branch infrastructure with Azure Virtual WAN. In addition to using your preferred SDWAN or security appliance vendor to automate branch connectivity, there's now client-side support through OpenVPN (preview) along with the ability to access resources that are connected to an Azure ExpressRoute circuit (preview)—such as an on-premises datacenter or virtual networks connected to the ExpressRoute circuit. 



Azure Front Door Service is in preview

Get a scalable and secure entry point for fast delivery of your global, microservice-based web applications with Azure Front Door Service. Control and monitor your service’s traffic and global backends with one central control plane and dashboard. Pricing will be effective on October 1, 2018. 



Hyperscale service tier in Azure SQL Database is in preview

Use Azure SQL Database—an intelligent, fully managed relational cloud database service that provides the broadest Microsoft SQL Server engine compatibility—to migrate your SQL Server databases without changing your apps. Then, take advantage of the hyperscale service tier and its ability to adapt on demand to your workload's needs. It auto-scales up to 100 TB per database and eliminates the need to preprovision storage resources. Pricing will be effective on October 1, 2018.



New updates to Azure Machine Learning Preview

Take advantage of several updates in Azure Machine Learning Preview, including the ability to integrate with your favorite Python development environment like Visual Studio Code, Visual Studio, PyCharm, Azure Databricks notebooks, or Jupyter notebooks. Also, identify the most efficient algorithms faster with automated machine learning and fine-tune it with intelligent hyper-parameter tuning. 



Delta in Azure Databricks is in preview

Simplify your pipelines with delta, a transactional storage layer in Azure Databricks. With it, it’s easier to build high performance analytics solutions at scale using Azure Databricks. Plus, get better reliability and higher performance on Apache Spark jobs and queries. 



Archive storage tier in Azure Blob storage is generally available in more regions

Take advantage of the archive storage tier—in addition to the hot and cool tiers—in Azure Blob storage. Seamlessly move your data among the three tiers as all archive operations are 100 percent consistent with the hot and cool tiers. The archive storage tier is now generally available in 11 additional Azure regions, and is supported by many leading storage industry partners. 



Azure IoT Central is generally available

Take advantage of rapid innovation, design, configuration, and integration of smart products with Azure IoT Central, a market-differentiated SaaS solution that's now generally available. Pricing will be effective on November 1, 2018. 


Next version of the Microsoft Bot Framework SDK is generally available

Using a highly modular and extensible architecture, pick the specific components you need with the next version of the Microsoft Bot Framework SDK, which is now generally available. Take advantage of a rich ecosystem of pluggable extensions that can help with tasks like machine translation, dialog management, and scheduling meetings. 



Improvements to usage meter names

In August 2018, we standardized Azure Virtual Machines usage meter names. We'll make the final update the first week of October 2018, which will include changes for all other Azure services to the meter category, meter subcategory, meter name, region names, and units of measure. Download a spreadsheet to see all attribute updates to prepare for any necessary reporting changes. 



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