Things You Should Know About Azure Deployment Techniques

By CIOReview | Friday, September 30, 2016
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Microsoft Azure is a highly sophisticated cloud platform that supports the deployment and management of applications through the Microsoft managed global data center network. The platform offers both Platform as a Service as well as Infrastructure as a Service with a huge collection of frame works and programming language support. Azure platform supports over 600 services including Compute, Mobile, Storage, Data management, Messaging, and Media services.

Deployment Methods

Microsoft Azure supports two types of deployment methods that include the Resource Manager Deployment and Azure Classic Deployment. While the Classic Deployment offers individual management of resources like SQL databases, the Resource Manager introduced in 2014 supports users to create service groups for efficient management of similar resources. The Resource Manager Deployment model is very different from the classic deployment model and these two models are incompatible with each other as well. The Resource Manager infrastructure is typically made up of several components like virtual machines, virtual network, storage account, web applications, database, database servers, and third party services.

Must check : Microsoft Whitepapers 

As part of the transformation, Microsoft recommends the use of Resource Manager Deployment to install new resources and to re-deploy the currently available resources.

The Azure deployment platform is defined with two portals- the Azure Portal and Azure preview portal. The Azure portal can be used to modify and configure an outdated Azure resource that only supports the classic deployment model and that is incompatible with the resource manager. The Azure preview portal is the latest model introduced in 2014 that can be used to develop, modify, and configure resources; and Microsoft seems to provide future support to this model. Built for a responsive layout, the latest model supports mobile devices and is designed for DevOps that offers a visual dashboard.

Resource Manager Deployment

As the infrastructure of organizational applications comprises of components like web apps, databases and third party services, the Azure resource manager offers a unique platform to work with such resource groups. The platform is designed to support resource updating, deletion and deployment in a solitary synchronized operation. In addition, the resource manager offers security, tagging features and auditing for efficient management of resources after successful deployment.

Benefits

The resource manager deployment offers consistent management layer, resource management with customized policies and user access controls as well. Some of the benefits of adopting resource manager include:

• Group management of resources rather than individual management.
• Repeated deployment support of resources during the development lifecycle.
• Declarative templates for infrastructure management.
• Define resource dependencies for efficient management
• Role-based access control of resources

Classic Deployment

While interacting in command line within the classic model resources such as PowerShell, the traditional Azure Service management API calls (ASM) are used to manage and update Azure resources.

Limitations

The classic mode is defined with limited features and has only single management units for each resource, adding up the administrative burdens. As the classic mode refuses resource grouping, the resources have to be managed individually, which makes resource management more complicated.

In addition, it is important to note while using classic portals for creating and managing resources as the resources once created in the classic mode will remain incompatible with other models of deployment.

Deployment Recommendations

As both the deployment models have significant benefits and few challenges, the choice of deployment methods typically depends on an organization’s requirements. Choosing ARM blindly because of its benefits may not be an apt decision as it might not meet all of the user requirements. As Microsoft Azure is currently in the path of evolution, some resources or features are limited in both portals as well.