Cloud and Datacenter Management Blog

Microsoft Hybrid Cloud blogsite about Management


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Azure Arc Kubernetes and Azure Defender Cloud for Containers with #Azure Policies

Azure Arc for Hybrid Cloud Management.

In my last blogpost I wrote about Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes and Container Insights with Alerting and Actions

In the following steps I will install some containers (Pods) on my Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes so I have some data to work with in my MVP LAB. I did that with Microsoft Visual Studio Code and with Helm predefined templates. Install the VSCode and install the Kubernetes extension, more information here

In the following steps we install DAPR and Redis on the Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes.

When you open your Kubernetes Cluster
Click then on Helm Repos
There you see Dapr repo.
Click on version 1.6.0.

Right click on version 1.6.0
Click on Install.

Dapr is installed by default on the Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes.

Type in Powershell :
dapr status -k
You will see the running pods of Dapr.

Dapr Dashboard is running
Important: This is running in a test environment and is now http.
For production you have to make it save!
Azure Arc Services and Azure Defender for Containers will help you with that.

 

Installing Redis in the same way.

Kubectl get pods

You will see the running Dapr and Redis pods.

Now we have installed two products on the Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster by default, but security is not in place based on best practices. For Dapr you have security best practices to follow and  Security for Redis.

But next to these security best practices from the software vendor, we also have Microsoft Azure Arc Security (Preview) on this kubernetes Cluster active. In the following steps you will see Security rules, Fixes and Azure Policies for Azure Arc Kubernetes to make your environment more secure and compliant.

Click on your Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster
This is my Dockkube.
Click then on Security (preview)

Here you see that I don’t have Azure Policy active to be compliant
on my Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster.
A lot of security issues are managed by policies.
Click on View Additional recommendations in Defender for Cloud

See Related recommendation (17)

Here you see all the dependent policies for your Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster.

Select your Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Cluster (Dockkube)
Click on Fix

Confirm and click on Fix 1 resource.

Remediation in progress.

Remediation Successful.
It can take some minutes to see your resources in the Healthy state.
Just refresh 😉

In Azure Policy you will see how Compliant you are with your
Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes.
Click on the ASC compliance.

Here you see the 10 Policies that are not Compliant.

Select a policy which is not compliant like here
Kubernetes Cluster containers should only use allowed images
Click on Details

Here you see the Component ID’s on my Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster
which are not compliant on this policy 😉
See the Tab bar, you are now on Component Compliance

Click on Policies tab
Dubbel click on the policy.

From here you can Assign the policy to your Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster.

See the TAB bar for deploying this policy.

Set your Managed Identity for deploying your policy.
Here you can read more how Remediation security works

More information on Microsoft Docs :

Enable Microsoft Defender for Containers

Azure Policy built-in definitions for Azure Arc-enabled Kubernetes

Understand Azure Policy for Kubernetes clusters

Overview of Microsoft Defender for Containers

Microsoft Azure Defender for Cloud Containers

Defender Plans for Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Clusters (Preview)
I have set these.
(Security Recommendations can take some time)

Security (preview) on your Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster

Here you get the Remediation steps to do and the Information.

There is information link to Mitre ATT&CK site.

And more information via a link to the Kubernetes site:
Resource Management for Pods and Containers

A New example and you can see the Affected Components
on my Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster Dockkube.

 

Conclusion

When you work in a DevOps way with Kubernetes containers and microservices, you want them as secure as possible. With application security and best practices from the software vendors. Security monitoring and compliance are important to keep you in control and to keep your environment safe. With Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes you get Azure Defender for Containers and Azure policy for security compliance to your Kubernetes Cluster.

Important: This is still in preview and should not be used in production environment yet until Microsoft makes it General Available for the world. Now you can test it in your test environment like me in my MVPLAB.


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Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Container Insights Alerts and Actions #Azure #Cloud #DevOps

Azure Arc-Enabled Data Services overview

Microsoft Azure Arc allows you to manage the following resource types hosted outside of Azure:

  • Servers: Manage Windows and Linux physical servers and virtual machines hosted outside of Azure.
  • Kubernetes clusters: Attach and configure Kubernetes clusters running anywhere, with multiple supported distributions.
  • Azure data services: Run Azure data services on-premises, at the edge, and in public clouds using Kubernetes and the infrastructure of your choice. SQL Managed Instance and PostgreSQL Hyperscale (preview) services are currently available.
  • SQL Server: Extend Azure services to SQL Server instances hosted outside of Azure.

I have a Kubernetes Cluster enabled with Azure Arc Services in my MVP LAB:

It’s Called Dockkube.

The Kubernetes Cluster is running on-premises and is enabled with Microsoft Azure Arc Services. With that said we get Azure Services available for management in the Cloud in a hybrid way. In the following step by step guide we activate Azure Monitor Insights for Containers on the Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes Cluster.

Container Insights Alerts / Actions on Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes

Dockkube Insights

When you open Dockkube Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes, you will see on the left Monitoring Insights.
Then you have the options :

  • What’s New
  • Cluster
  • Nodes
  • Controllers
  • Containers.

Click on Containers, and you will see all the containers on the Azure Arc enabled kubernetes.
Then you have recommended Alerts (Preview) at the top, when you Click on it you will see all the predefined recommended alerts in preview. I have selected Node CPU % and Enabled the alert. With that you see on the above screenshot there is no action group assigned. That is the next step, click on No Action Group Assigned.

Click on Create a new action group.

Select the Azure Subscription, Resource group and give the
Action Group a name.
Click on Next: Notifications

Here you can select your type of Alert communication.
I have selected the option Email.

Setting the Name : Dock Kube Notify.

The next step you can select an action type :

  • Automation Runbook
  • Azure Function
  • Event Hub
  • ITSM
  • Logic App
  • Secure webhook
  • Webhook

In my MVP LAB, I don’t need an action but just a notification by email.

You can set a TAG here

Before you create the Alert rule with the action group, you get the option
to test the action group.
Click on Test Action Group.

Select a sample type.
I did Resource health alert
Click on Test.

The test is running.

I’m getting the Alert email in my box from Microsoft Azure.

Test is successful and click on Done.

Click on Create

Select the Action group for me is that DockKube CPU.
Click on Apply to Rule.

Now this Alert is active on my Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes 😉

When you go to Alert Rules, you will see the new Alert rule.
Here you can modify it if necessary.

For example, I want the severity from 3 Information to 2 Warning.

I made a severity 2 Warning.
Don’t forget to click on Save at the left top.

More Container Insights information on Microsoft docs :

Recommended metric alerts (preview) from Container insights 

Common alert schema

Use Cluster Connect to connect to Azure Arc-enabled Kubernetes clusters

Conclusion

Microsoft Azure Arc enabled kubernetes is Awesome for management in a hybrid way. I just showed you the power of Alert rules with action groups from the Azure Cloud to get Container Insights. Of course there are more Azure features for your Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes like Security (Preview) Kubernetes Resources, Policies, Gitops and more. Making your own dashboard with Container Insight information. Go for hybrid IT Management with Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes!

 


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Windows Admin Center and Windows Server 2022 #Docker Host – Azure Container Instances and #AKS #WAC #Azure #Winserv

Windows Admin Center

Windows Admin Center runs in a web browser and can manage :

  • Windows Server 2022, Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2016, Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Windows 11, Windows 10
  • Azure Stack HCI
  • Clusters
  • Containers; Docker, Kubernetes, AKS
  • Azure Virtual Servers, Azure integration via extensions like Azure Monitoring, Azure Security, and much more….
  • Lot of extensions to manage for example third party solutions.

This goes with the locally Windows Admin Center gateway installed on Windows Server or domain-joined Windows 10 /11.

Windows Admin Center Architecture.

Here you find more information about the Install options of Windows Admin Center

I’m working with Windows Admin Center every day to manage our datacenter and to mange my MVP LAB. When you have to install Windows Server Core
or Microsoft Azure Stack HCI Operating system, then Windows Admin Center is the right tool for you as an Administrator. You can use all the Server Manager tools via WAC
and you don’t have to work with Command-line tools only like CMD and PowerShell.


You can download Microsoft Windows Admin Center here

Installing Docker Host on Windows Server 2022

In my MVP LAB I have a Microsoft Windows Server 2022 Datacenter Edition Hyper-V Host, and I like to make a Docker Host Server for my Containers.
With Windows Admin Center it’s easy to roll out a Docker host Server for your Containers.
In the following steps I will Install a Docker Host Server on Windows Server 2022.

Open Windows Admin Center and connect to your Server.

I Have Container Extension installed version 1.150.0

Click on Containers and Click on Install
Windows Admin Center will Restart your Server for the Docker Installation!

Hang on while Docker Host will be Installed on Windows Server 2022.

Docker Host Installed Successfully.

Docker Host Container Overview Screen on Windows Server 2022.

From here you can Pull containers images to the Docker Host.
This is what I did but…..

Instead of pulling a Container Image you can also Create your Own Container Image.

Here I’m Pulling a ASP.NET Container Image from Microsoft.

Pulled Container Image Successfully.

The ASP.NET Container Image is now Available on the Docker Host.

Select the Container Image and Click on Run.

Give the Docker Container a name.
You can Manage the ports,
Hyper-V Isolation,
Memory,
CPU
And add addition Docker Run options,
Click on Run.

The ASP.NET Docker Container is running on Windows Server 2022.

When you Click on the running Container you will get options like :
Stats, Details, Logs, Console and Events.
When you Click on Console you will go remote by PowerShell to the Docker Host.

Here you got all the Docker commands 😉

And of course when you want to develop Containers as a developer you can use Microsoft Visual Studio Code as well.

The ASP.NET Container in VSCode.
Download Microsoft Visual Studio Code here

(I’m using Visual Studio Code Insiders version in my MVP LAB)

Microsoft Azure Container Instances

Containers are becoming the preferred way to package, deploy, and manage cloud applications. Azure Container Instances offers the fastest and simplest way to run a container in Azure, without having to manage any virtual machines and without having to adopt a higher-level service.

Azure Container Instances is a great solution for any scenario that can operate in isolated containers, including simple applications, task automation, and build jobs. For scenarios where you need full container orchestration, including service discovery across multiple containers, automatic scaling, and coordinated application upgrades, we recommend Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS).

For my MVP LAB Azure Container Instances (ACI) is a great way to run Containers fast in the Cloud and have a overview with Windows Admin Center for :

Here you have a overview of your Azure Container Instances in Windows Admin Center.

In the following steps I will create an Azure Container Instance via the Microsoft Azure Portal and show it in Windows Admin Center. For this you need to integrate Windows Admin Center with your Microsoft Azure Subscription. This you can do in settings of WAC:

Register your Azure Subscription with Windows Admin Center for Hybrid Benefit.
Here you find more information about Azure integration with Windows Admin Center

When you have your Azure Account active in Windows Admin Center, go to the Microsoft Azure Portal and search for Container instances.

Click on Create Container Instances

Here you set the basics of your Azure Container Instance

Here you set the following items for your Azure Container Instance (ACI) :

  1. Select your Azure Subscription which is integrated with your Microsoft Windows Admin Center.
  2. Select or Create the Resource Group for your Azure Container Instance.
  3. Give your Container a name.
  4. Select the Region in Microsoft Azure where you want your Azure Container Instance to run.
  5. Availability zones to select.
  6. Select your Image Source, I selected Quickstart images of Microsoft, but you can also select your own Container image.
  7. Then select the size for vcpu, memory, gpus for your Azure Container Instance application.

Click on Next for Networking.

I Selected Public for testing but here you can select private too
with your own DNS name Label with the
right ports and protocols.

At Advanced settings you can configure additional container properties and variables

here you can TAG the Owner of the Azure Container Instance.
Click on Review + Create.

Now you can Click Create or Download the template for Automation.

Have a look at the Options here what you can do with the Template from here.

Microsoft Azure Container Instance is Deployed and running.

Nginx Container Instance is running on Azure.

Now we have the Microsoft Azure Container Instance with Nginx running in the Cloud, we can see that in Windows Admin Center.

Azure Container Instance in Windows Admin Center in running state.
When you don’t need it anymore you can end it here or in the Azure Portal.

Azure Container Instance is stopped by Windows Admin Center.

Run your Own Azure Container Instances from the ACR via
Windows Admin Center.

Manage Kubernetes Clusters and Containers with Windows Admin Center

Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) on Azure Stack HCI is an on-premises implementation of Azure Kubernetes Service, which automates running containerized applications at scale. Azure Kubernetes Service is available on Azure Stack HCI, Windows Server 2019 Datacenter, and Windows Server 2022 Datacenter, making it quicker to get started hosting Linux and Windows containers in your datacenter. This is the High Available Container Solution on-premises from Microsoft, where you can run Containers and microservices in a isolated way in your datacenter with your DevOps Team. But you can also make your Azure Stack HCI Cluster hybrid with Azure integration and Azure Arc Services to benefit of Azure Hybrid Services.

 

Setup AKS on Azure Stack HCI with Windows Admin Center

Create your Own locally Azure Stack HCI Cluster with Azure Kubernetes Services

Conclusion

Microsoft product team of Windows Admin Center | Windows Server | Azure Stack HCI are working hard to make the Windows Admin Center Tool better and better to install and manage Container / microservices solutions. With Microsoft Azure extensions in Windows Admin Center and Azure Arc Services, Microsoft features from the Azure Cloud becomes available for your Containers like Azure Defender for Cloud with Container Insights, Azure Monitor, Azure App Services and much more.
Windows Admin Center is a Great Server Manager tool for your Windows Servers in your Datacenter. Especially when you use Windows Server Core or Azure Stack HCI.

Important:

Some features in Windows Admin Center are preview and not production ready yet, like ACR and ACI Integration I just showed in preview.
Please feel free to provide Microsoft feedback on Windows Admin Center here.

JOIN Windows Admin Center Community Group on LinkedIn


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Apply #security principles to your #architecture to protect against attacks on your data and systems

Hope you started year 2022 in Good Health in a difficult pandemic time.

Starting 2022 by asking yourself, how is your Security by Design doing in 2022
Your Security is one of the most important aspects of any architecture for your Business.
It provides confidentiality, integrity, and availability assurances against attacks and abuse of your valuable data and systems. Losing these assurances can negatively impact your business operations and revenue, and your organization’s reputation.

Here you find Awesome information about Applying security principles to your architecture to protect against attacks on your data and systems:

Microsoft Architecture and Security Docs

Here you find more information about NIST Cybersecurity Framework

The Microsoft Cybersecurity Reference Architectures (MCRA) describe Microsoft’s cybersecurity capabilities. These References and diagrams can support you with implementing Security by design.

Microsoft Defender for Cloud

Microsoft Defender for Cloud (formerly known as Azure Security Center) community repository. This repository contains:

  • Security recommendations that are in private preview
  • Programmatic remediation tools for security recommendations
  • PowerShell scripts for programmatic management
  • Azure Policy custom definitions for at-scale management of Microsoft Defender for Cloud
  • Logic App templates that work with Defender for Cloud’s Logic App connectors (to automate response to Security alerts and recommendations)
  • Logic App templates that help you run regular tasks or reports within the scope of Microsoft Defender for Cloud
  • Custom workbooks to visualize Defender for Cloud data

Become a Microsoft Defender for Cloud Ninja

Security and Learning is a ongoing process, I always say Learning on the Job 😉 is important to keep Up-to-Date every day of the week. Microsoft Tech Community platform and Microsoft Learning can support you to get the knowledge.

Become a Microsoft Defender for Cloud Ninja here

Conclusion

Microsoft and the community has a lot of good security information to start with for your Data and Systems to keep your business solution as save as possible. Here they write New blogposts for the community about Defender for Cloud

Keep in Mind “Security is only as strong as the weakest component in the Chain”

So keep your Security up-to-date and do assessments on vulnerabilities to keep your data and systems secure. Monitoring => Alerting => Remediation is 24/7/365 Process with Security people in the business.


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Windows Admin Center 21.10 Packet Monitoring Preview Extension #WAC #Winserv

Windows Admin Center Packet Monitoring

Packet monitoring allows you to diagnose your server by capturing and displaying network traffic through the networking stack in a log that is filtered, organized, and easy to follow and manipulate.​

Download Windows Admin Center Here

Filter the Captured packets by PacketMon.

Before you start the capture you can set the filter, with great options and see differences between two IP-Addresses for example.

Capture is running.

You can explore every packet in details for trouble shooting.

You can save your Captures for later.

Conclusion

A great tool for trouble shooting in Windows Admin Center 21.10 with Packet Monitoring (preview) to get the bits and bytes in detail.


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Windows Admin Center 21.10 Build 1.3.2111.01001 Secured-Core #Security #WindowsAdminCenter

Windows Admin Center Security

Secured-core – recommended for the most sensitive systems and industries like financial, healthcare, and government agencies. Builds on the previous layers and leverages advanced processor capabilities to provide protection from firmware attacks.

In Windows Admin Center Security you can Configure Secured-Core :

Secured-Core in Windows Admin Center 21.10

You can activate 6 secured-Core feature :

  • Hypervisor Enforced Code Integrity (HVCI)
  • Boot DMA Protection
  • System Guard
  • Secure Boot
  • Virtualization-based Security (VBS)
  • Trusted Platform Module 2.0 (TPM2.0)

You now can simply activate the Security Feature.
Needs a Reboot

Hypervisor Enforced Code Integrity (HVCI) is enabled.

More information about Secured-Core Features

Windows Admin Center Community on LinkedIn


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JOIN Microsoft Ignite 2021 Event November 2-4 #MSIgnite #Azure #Winserv #Windows11 #Hybrid

Microsoft Ignite 2021

Join Microsoft and the Community November 2–4, 2021 to explore the latest tools, training sessions, technical expertise, networking opportunities, and more. You can register here

Here you find some great MSIgnite guidance on Microsoft Tech Community :

Check out what’s new in Security at Microsoft Ignite

Surface at Microsoft Ignite: November 2021

Your Guide to Microsoft Teams at Microsoft Ignite Fall 2021

Windows at Microsoft Ignite: November 2021

A developer’s guide to Ignite 2021

Bring Azure Kubernetes Services to a Hybrid Environment (The Blueprint Files)

Follow @MS_Ignite on Twitter

Of course you can make your own schedule from the session catalog here

Don’t forget your Registration and have a Great innovative Microsoft Ignite 2021 Event 😉

 


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Azure Monitor Insights for Arc enabled Kubernetes Clusters anywhere #Azure #Kubernetes

Azure Monitor Insights for Monitoring your Containers.

In the last blogpost I wrote about Microsoft Azure Arc Services and how to connect a Docker for Desktop Kubernetes Cluster for testing your DevOps solution like Container Apps, Functions, App Services in a test environment. Here you find the Link to the Installation.

One of the Microsoft Azure Arc features is Azure Monitor Insights for monitoring your Kubernetes Cluster and the Containers.

Azure Arc Insights for Kubernetes Cluster anywhere

In the following step-by-step guide we will configure Azure Monitor Insights for your Kubernetes Cluster.

I Connected my Analytics Workspace CloudMVPLab.
Click on Configure.

Onboarding your Kubernetes Cluster will take some minutes.

After a while your Kubernetes Cluster Analytics data will show in Insights.

Here you see a navigation bar with the following topics

  • What’s New
  • Cluster
  • Reports
  • Nodes
  • Controllers
  • Containers.

Insights reports of the Kubernetes Cluster

Here you can Click on default reports of your Kubernetes Cluster.

Storage Capacity and Health Status report of your Kubernetes Cluster.

Storage Capacity more in Details.

Deployments Report of your Kubernetes Cluster.

Workload details Report of your Kubernetes Cluster.

Kubelet report of your Kubernetes Cluster

Data Usage of your Kubernetes Cluster

Data Usage

Insights the Nodes of the Kubernetes Cluster

Insights of the Nodes and on the right you can view Analytics.

Here you can work with Log Analytics on your Cluster.

Insights in Controllers of your Kubernetes Cluster

Insights of your Controllers

Insights Containers of your Kubernetes Cluster

Container Insights of your Kubernetes Cluster

Container Insights with Azure Log Analytics.

So with Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Clusters you can monitoring your Cluster and running Containers to keep you in Control on what is happening on the Cluster but also with your Container Apps and microservices. After this you can set Alerts and notifications when something is going wrong or offline. With this running you can start running your own App services, Containers or Azure functions on your Kubernetes Cluster.

Microsoft Senior Cloud Advocate Thomas Maurer explains in this awesome video how to add Azure App Services to your Kubernetes Cluster

Conclusion

This configuration with Docker for Desktop Kubernetes Cluster is for testing purpose only and can be used for your own DevOps solutions before you deploy on Production Ready Clusters. With Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Clusters you get the powerful Microsoft Azure Features and solutions in a secure way on your Kubernetes Cluster. I wish you lot of success with Azure Arc Enabled Kubernetes Clusters to make Awesome Apps and IT solutions for the Business 😉


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Windows Admin Center v2103 Available! What’s New #Winserv #Azure #Management #WindowsAdminCenter #MVPBuzz

Windows Admin Center v2103

With Windows Admin Center you can remotely manage Windows Server running anywhere—physical, virtual, on-premises, in Azure, or in a hosted environment.
The tool, available with your Windows Server license at no additional charge, consolidates and reimagines Windows OS tools in a single, browser-based, graphical user interface.
At Microsoft Ignite 2021 Global Virtual Event they launched Windows Admin Center version 2103. Here you find the download.

What’s New in Windows Admin Center v2103

WAC Updates Automatically

Events Tool ReDesign (Preview)

Great Overview of the Server Events 😉

Azure IoT Edge for Linux on Windows

Windows Admin Center in The Azure Portal 

Set Proxy Server in Windows Admin Center Settings.

Open in a Separate Window

This is a Separate Window on my Second Screen, this works Awesome!

Windows Admin Center Virtual Tool improvements 🙂

Conclusion

Microsoft is working hard to make Hybrid IT Management better for Administrators to manage Hybrid Cloud datacenters. Windows Admin Center is a must have for managing
Windows Server Core, AzureStack HCI, and Cluster Services. I can say: I love to work with Windows Admin Center 🙂

 

When you have feedback for the Product Team please do that here at User Voice


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Today is Microsoft Ignite 2021 Event of the Year #MSIgnite #Azure #Cloud #AzureStackHCI #Winserv and More

JOIN Microsoft Ignite 2021 Event

You don’t want to miss this Live Awesome Virtual Global Event of Microsoft 😉