Archives / 2013 / August
  • Windows Azure: General Availability of SQL Server Always On Support and Notification Hubs, AutoScale Improvements + More

    This morning we released some major updates to Windows Azure.  These new capabilities include:

    • SQL Server AlwaysOn Support: General Availability support with Windows Azure Virtual Machines (enables both high availability and disaster recovery)
    • Notification Hubs: General Availability Release of Windows Azure Notification Hubs (broadcast push for Windows 8, Windows Phone, iOS and Android)
    • AutoScale: Schedule-based AutoScale rules and richer logging support
    • Virtual Machines: Load Balancer Configuration and Management
    • Management Services: New Portal Extension for Operation logs + Alerts

    All of these improvements are now available to use immediately (note: AutoScale is still in preview – everything else is general availability).  Below are more details about them.

  • Announcing the release of the Windows Azure SDK 2.1 for .NET

    Today we released the v2.1 update of the Windows Azure SDK for .NET.  This is a major refresh of the Windows Azure SDK and it includes some great new features and enhancements. These new capabilities include:

    • Visual Studio 2013 Preview Support: The Windows Azure SDK now supports using the new VS 2013 Preview
    • Visual Studio 2013 VM Image: Windows Azure now has a built-in VM image that you can use to host and develop with VS 2013 in the cloud
    • Visual Studio Server Explorer Enhancements: Redesigned with improved filtering and auto-loading of subscription resources
    • Virtual Machines: Start and Stop VM’s w/suspend billing directly from within Visual Studio
    • Cloud Services: New Emulator Express option with reduced footprint and Run as Normal User support
    • Service Bus: New high availability options, Notification Hub support, Improved VS tooling
    • PowerShell Automation: Lots of new PowerShell commands for automating Web Sites, Cloud Services, VMs and more

    All of these SDK enhancements are now available to start using immediately and you can download the SDK from the Windows Azure .NET Developer Center.  Visual Studio’s Team Foundation Service ( has also been updated to support today’s SDK 2.1 release, and the SDK 2.1 features can now be used with it (including with automated builds + tests).

    Below are more details on the new features and capabilities released today: