Microsoft Ignite 2021 – the first day

Microsoft Ignite is here again. Did I write ‘here’? That was not the best way to formulate. ‘It’s now streaming’ is much better. Ignite – like many other gigaevents – is transferred to virtual format. For a geek like me this is just fine. No need to fly and travel. Just sitting down to my sofa and enjoying the content!

Anycase, Microsoft has a long tradition for launching new products, services and updates on Ignite. That’s the one key reason for all working with MS ecosystem to participant Ignite. And this practice seems to continue even during the times of virtual Ignite. The announcements and news of the first day were breathtaking. It almost felt like my brain was swollen. Or maybe it was because of I was listening Ignite sessions to very late night (I am located EET time zone) and after 4 h of sleep I feel a little fuzzy. One way or another, it was worth of it. Yesterday’s jetlag is today’s “streaming-lag”. 🙂

Ok, enough chit-chat. Let’s move to the topic. New launches and announcements. Here comes some of those that enchanted me:

Extended network for Azure – directly to GA. This awesome service gives you possibility to stretch an on-premises subnet into Azure! Think about! When migrating to Azure on-premises virtual machines can keep their original on-premises private IP addresses.

SMB over QUIC – now GA. As short described “the SMB VPN”. That’s something really awesome for telecommuters like me and mobile device use case. Anywhere when high security for stretched filesystem is needed without traditional VPN tunneling.

Custom configuration for Windows Server and Linux VM’s and support for Azure Arc-enabled server VM’s – now in preview.

New virtual machine types (yeah, again – noe Dv5 and Dasv5 with AMD CPU’s. Ev5 and Easv5 with AMD CPU’s) – interesting! Microsoft+Intel has been so long kind of standard set.

On-demand disk bursting – now GA. Excellent functionality to improve startup times and take care of traffic spikes cost efficient way.

Couple of new networking tools are launched for preview. Azure GW Load Balancer and Azure Virtual Network Manager, both long waited and wanted functionalities. Been using own hack for VNet management? Mee too. Finally this is over.

Trusted Launch of VM’s – now GA. Like you see, Microsoft is focusing strong on security. This is improving security of gen 2 VM’s. And no additional price!

And Azure Bastion has finally moved to GA.

AVS aka Azure VMware Solution had a lot of visibility in Ignite. That’s good because the solution is great – but unfortunately came to market quite hopelessly late (and I don’t even mention the miscarriage when Google grabbed the subcontractor).

AKS aka Azure Kubernetes Service gained impressive new functions and many sessions.

Interesting was strong co-operation with wider coverage of “bare metal almost cloud” kind of vendor partners. VMware, Cray and NetApp had stayed strong options for “cloud like” hosting. SAP and Oracle have moved forward, deeper offering on Azure together with Microsoft. And then there are new players: Teradata and SAS. After seen multiple very painfull migration projects from Teradata to Azure I really understand the need for that. Still, it’s a strange marriage.

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