Azure Marketplace is a great place to start your search for a Virtual Machine to start building your app or infrastructure on. However, these VM’s are sometimes vanilla and will need to be configured to your liking. Let’s use Rails as an example. In order to get a Rails app on a Virtual Machine there are a bunch of steps you will need to perform. First, create the operating system VM, Linux. Make sure that is up to date (sudo apt-update). Then you need to install Rails, Nginx, Unicorn, some sort of database like Postgres and dont forget permissions and users.
Having a custom install is cool but sometimes the situation does not call for that. There is MS Open Tech for that.
Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc., (MS Open Tech) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation to advance Microsoft’s investment in openness including interoperability, open standards and open source.
At MS Open Tech, we focus on providing our customers with even greater choice and opportunity to bridge Microsoft and non-Microsoft technologies together in heterogeneous environments. We believe that openness is good for our customers, good for the community and good for our business.
We’re a diverse team of engineers, standards professionals and technical evangelists who are experienced and passionate in working with an equally diverse set of technologies from Microsoft and others.
Every day, we are powering interoperability and opportunity across developers, partners, customers and competitors.
We build open source code. We create interoperability bridges. We contribute open standards specs. We work with a variety of standards organizations such as: W3C, IETF, OASIS, Ecma, DMTF, and open source communities including: JQuery, MongoDB,Apache Cordova, Redis, Apache, Qpid, .NET Foundation, OpenJDK, Eclipse, Node.js, Cocos2d, Web Platform Docs, Symfony, Doctrine, WebKit, GitHub, CodePlex and more.
Our team works closely across Microsoft business groups to support our customers’ journey in a mobile first, cloud first world.
As a result, you can do more and achieve more with the openness of the Microsoft platform.
- You can build with the tool of your choice.
- You can work across platforms.
- You can collaborate through code.
There are Projects that MS Open Tech builds, HTML5 Labs that contributes to the Edge platform and VM Depot where a community managed repository of Linux and FreeBSD virtual machine images for easy deployment to Microsoft Azure reside.
You can search for a open source product or platform and most likely there is an image that is ready to go and deploy. Let’s use WordPress as an example.
- Search for WordPress and you will see a listing of results.
- Choose the result that best fits your need.
- Click on Create Virtual Machine (or if you are familiar with PowerShell you can get a deployment script)
- Login to the MS Open Tech website using one of the 3 Authentication methods.
- You can fill out the minimum to create an account on the MS Open Tech site.
- Accept the T&C and Click Save
- The next step is to link your Azure account with MS Open Tech to create the deployment. If you have your publication file you can upload it, otherwise you can click the Azure Publish Settings link within the copy and it will download one for you (as long as you are currently logged into the Azure portal).
- Once downloaded, you can now upload it to the site.
- Once that is connected, you now can configure some of the VM settings. DNS Name, Username/Password as well as region, storage accounts and endpoints.
- Once you are happy with your configuration, click I agree and Create VM. It should take a few minutes and your new VM will show up in your Azure portal.
- One thing to note. If you choose a VM with configured software you might need to read the README to find out usernames and passwords to certain products.