Windows System State Backup to Azure with Azure Backup is generally available

We are excited to announce the general availability (GA) of Windows Server System State Backup to Azure with the Azure Backup agent. We previewed the direct offsite of Windows Server System State to Azure using the Azure Backup agent earlier this year. This was a key addition to Azure Backup agent’s existing capability of backing up files and folders directly to Azure. With this GA release, the Azure Backup agent has full production support for protecting Windows File Servers, Active Directory, and IIS Web servers hosted on Windows Server 2016 all the way back to Windows Server 2008 R2. Backing up your Windows Server System State to Azure gives you a simple, secure and cost-effective way of protecting Windows Servers and enabling the recovery of dynamic OS and application configuration from Azure in the event of an IT disaster.

New features

  • Flexible backup schedule and retention policy for System State
    Now you can configure daily backups for System State at your preferred time directly from the Azure backup agent console. You can also set retention ranges for your daily, weekly and monthly system state backups. These options put you in control of managing your data.
  • Automation at scale with PowerShell
    Full PowerShell support for configuration, backup and recovery of System State so that you can automate protection of Windows Server files and configuration at scale.

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Benefits of System State Backup with Azure Backup

  • Comprehensive protection for Active Directory, File-Servers and IIS Web servers
    System State fully encapsulates Active Directory, which is the most important database in any organization and allows for targeted domain-controller recoveries. In addition, critical cluster information of File Servers and the IIS Web Server Metabase is fully contained in the Windows System State.
  • Centralized management in Azure
    Once it is backed up, all information related to System State backups across your Windows Servers is available in the Azure portal. You can also configure notifications directly from the Azure portal so you get notified of a failed backup and you can take corrective steps. You can also generate reports using Microsoft Power BI.
  • Cost-effective and secure offsite storage for Windows Server
    With pay-as-you-go Azure storage, Azure Backup eliminates on-premises infrastructure by directly backing up your Windows Server System State to Azure. Azure Backup also encrypts your backups at the source using a key that only you have access to. Additionally, enhanced security features built into Azure Backup ensure that your critical system state backups remain secure from ransomware, corruptions, and deletions.
  • Free restores
    With Azure Backup, you can restore System State files from Azure without any egress charges.

Follow the four simple steps below to start protecting Windows Servers using Azure Backup.

  1. Create an Azure Recovery Services Vault in the Azure portal
  2. Download the latest version of the Azure Backup Agent to your on-premises Windows Servers from the Azure Portal
  3. Install and Register the Agent to your Recovery Services Vault in Azure
  4. Start protecting Windows Server System State and other Files and Folders directly to Azure!

Related links and additional content

Download Microsoft Ignite 2017 session content

This script can download all the Microsoft Ignite slidedecks and videos that are available from the Ignite portal. Very useful if you want to watch all the movies and sessions once again!! In this example I’ll download only the sessions with the keyword “IaaS”. But you can also download all the content, or just by title, speaker, etc.

Download the script from Microsoft Gallery here.


\Get-IgniteSession.ps1 -DownloadFolder C:\Ignite2017 -Keyword "IaaS"

Microsoft Ignite 2017 Orlando, Florida!!

Within a couple of days, I’ll be visiting Microsoft Ignite 2017 in Orlando, Florida. With a lot of great content, it will be a great event!! I’ve already schedule my sessions and figured out some partners and companies I want to visit.

The main focus for this week is, Microsoft Azure (IaaS and PaaS). Hope to see you guys in Florida!! If you want to meet somewhere, please contact me by e-mail or Twitter! @Mark_Swinkels.

Microsoft Azure Architecture Center overview

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The Microsoft Azure Architecture Center is the place when you want to start building Cloud Services in Azure or to start using Hybrid Cloud technologies.All the things you need to know are available within the Azure Architecture Center:

  • Architecture Guides:
  • Reference Architectures;
  • Design Patterns;
  • Best Practices;
  • Design Review Checklists;
  • Scenario Guides;
  • And many, many, many more…….

Start here your Microsoft Cloud Journey with Azure Architecture Center

Veeam – 750 euro in FREE Cloud Services

Over 200,000 businesses rely on Veeam® for comprehensive, on-premises data protection. With this new program Veeam and its Veeam Cloud & Service Provider (VCSP) partners provide a simple and cost effective way for customers to try backup and disaster recovery in the Cloud.

By using a VCSP, customers can avoid the cost and complexity of building and maintaining an off-site infrastructure while meeting their business and regulatory requirements for off-site backup and disaster recovery.

Extend Availability to the Cloud with Veeam Cloud Connect and Veeam partners to ensure your business remains Always-On™!

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5nine AzSec for Azure Security

5nine AzSec - Azure Security Simplified

5nine AzSec is an intuitive standalone application that creates, maintains and manages inbound/outbound traffic rules for virtual machines in Azure. Firewall log data is collected, displayed and managed in a central console.

5nine Cloud Security with AzSec is a bundled offering that includes 5nine Cloud Security and 5nine AzSec. This integrated solution enables hybrid cloud administrators to manage firewall rules, alerts and logs across Azure and Hyper-V environments from a single access point.

  • Easy Firewall Configuration: Apply firewall rules in a single step instead of using complex scripts or the Azure portal.
  • Automate Firewall Rule Configuration: Built-in templates enable you to easily apply firewall rules and reduce the risk of misconfiguration for virtual machines running in the Azure environment.
  • Simplify Anomaly Discovery: The firewall log export allows you to view and analyze firewall log data right from within the 5nine Cloud Security Anomaly Analysis module, and export logs to Splunk or other SIEM systems.
  • Monitor Azure from One Location: Review your Azure subscription resource groups, status, usage and billing summary from within 5nine’s interface.
  • Consolidate Hybrid Cloud Management: Configure firewall rules and view log data across Azure and Hyper-V environments from a single access point.*

 

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List all VM sizes in Microsoft Azure per Location

Sometimes it’s realy useful to list all the different VM sizes in Microsoft Azure for one Location, for example ‘West Europe’. You can see for example: the VM size, the number of cores, Memory, Max disk count, OS disk size, Resource disk size, etc.

Very powerful to have an overview when choosing the right virtual machine within Microsoft Azure IaaS.


## Login to your subscription using PowerShell
Login-AzureRmAccount
## List all VM sizes in Location 'West Europe'
Get-AzureRmVMSize -Location 'West Europe'

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How to: Implementing Storage Spaces insides Azure Virtual Machines

Within an Azure Virtual Machine, you should never store your (personal) data on the C: drive or the temporary disk. You can attach new storage disks to the virtual machine, how many disks depends on the VM size you’ve choosen.

View all VM sizes in Microsoft Azure:
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/virtual-machines-windows-sizes

In my example I’ve choosen the ‘DS1v2’ VM size, so I can attach two extra (premium storage) disks. Because the maximum size of an disk in Microsoft Azure is 1023 GB, I’ve created multiple disks. Both disks are attached to the virtual machine and we’re going to implement Storage Spaces within the virtual machine. Storage Spaces is software defined storage (SDS) from Windows Server 2012 R2 and above.

Storage Spaces is a built-in Windows Server Role. When combining all the data disks, you can create one, or more, big data volumes in your Windows Virtual Machine. Extremely powerful for example file servers.

1.) First of all I’ve created a new virtual machine using the Azure Portal

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2.) Next I’ve created two new disks (premium storage – SSD) with tthe size of 1023 GB.

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3.) Next I’ve logged in into the new created virtual machine and configured Storage Spaces.

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4.) The next step is to create a new virtual disk

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5.) The final step is to create the new volume for storing your data on.

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As you can see, there’s a new volume of 2 TBwithin the virtual machine. If you’re changing the size of the virtual machine, it is also possible to add some more disks to the virtual machine and extend the Storage Spaces with more terabytes!!

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