Month: February 2016

Building Azure Resource Manager Templates – Forcing WMF 4.0 when using DSC Extension

This subject won’t really need a post of it’s own but I will do it anyway. In the previous part of this ARM series, I showed how we can use the domain join extension instead of DSC to join a VM to an existing AD domain. This resulted is huge savings in time taken to deploy the entire scenario. When I was talking to my good friend, fellow PowerShell MVP and all-things-Azure guru, Ben Gelens, he was quick to point that the delays when using DSC extension here could be due to the install of WMF 5.0. Indeed! When you use Azure DSC extension, it by default installs latest available version of WMF 5.0 (production preview at the time of this writing) which requires a reboot! Therefore, using DSC extension in ARM templates for down-level OS such as Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2, there will be delays. But, there is a workaround. We can force DSC extension to use WMF 4.0. Here is how we do that.

Observe line number 19. We use the …

Building Azure Resource Manager Templates – Using Domain Join Extension

The scenario that we used to understand and build ARM templates contained a domain controller VM along with one or more VMs that joined the domain service hosted by the DC VM. To make sure the VMs join the domain, we used PowerShell DSC configuration. One of the biggest quirks, at least what I faced, with DSC extension with ARM templates is that it takes little longer to complete. For example, the complete scenario deployment took almost 48 minutes to deploy. I am not making up that number. Here is the proof. Now, 48 minutes may not sound that worse but imagine deploying tens of VMs that need to join the domain using the DSC configuration as we saw in the earlier example in this series. This is where the new JsonADDomainExtension helps! Instead of using DSC configuration to add VMs to a AD domain, we will now use this VM extension. Within the earlier template that deployed this scenario, we will remove the domainJoin resource definition and replace that with JsonADDomainExtension. Here is how that new …

Microsoft #AzureStack is here! #AzureStackOperational – Getting Started

I am sure you must have seen the news already. It has been all over Twitter that Microsoft Azure Stack Technical Preview 1 (TP1) was released on Friday. MAS is undoubtedly the best thing that is happening to Microsoft Private / Hybrid Cloud stack essentially because it brings in the “real” cloud-consistency. MAS release takes Microsoft to a different playing field leaving the competition far behind in the Hybrid cloud story. While TP1 is just proof-of-concept (POC) release, it is good enough to deploy and play with different aspects of MAS architecture, and of course understand how organizations can benefit from this. This post is just an introductory and the first one in a series of many articles I intend to write as I start playing with the POC deployment. I will list out mostly what is already known to everyone out there but I will keep updating as we progress towards the general availability of MAS. I will also post some useful links in this post that you can use to get started with MAS or …