Cloud and Datacenter Management Blog

Microsoft Hybrid Cloud blogsite about Management


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Backup – Restore – DR strategy in a Fast changing World #Data #Management

The world of data is moving and changing a lot with new IT technologies coming up like leaves on a tree.
Data is everywhere, on Servers, workstations, BYOD Devices in the Cloud but how do you keep your data save and protected for your business today and in the future? There are a lot of reasons why you should Backup your data :

  • One of your employees accidentally deleted important files for example.
  • Your data got compromised by a virus.
  • Your Server crashed
  • You have to save your data for a period of time by Law
  •  And there will be more reasons why you should do backup…………….

A lot of Enterprise organizations are moving to the Cloud with workloads for the Business, but how is your Backup and Disaster Recovery managed today? A lot of data transitions are made but what if your Backup and Disaster Recovery solution is out dated or reaching end of Life? You can have a lot of Questions like :

  • What data should I backup?
  • Should I just upgrade the Backup Solution?
  • How can I make my Data Management Backup -DR Solution Cheaper and ready for the future?
  • How can I make my new Backup-DR Solution independent? ( Vendor Lockin)

And there will be more questions when you are in this scenario where you have to renew your Backup – DR Solution.
Here we have the following Great Backup Solution from 2014 :

Offsite Microsoft DPM Backup Solution since 2014

Here we have 3 System Center Data Protection Manager Backup Pods with a Tape library and One DPM pod connected with a Microsoft Azure Backup Vault in the Cloud. You do the Security updates and the Rollups for Windows Server 2012 R2 and System Center Data Protection Manager 2012 to keep the Solution save and running.

Long Time Protection to Tape

DPM 2012 Server with direct attached Storage for Short time protection

The four DPM Backup Pods have the same Storage configuration for short time protection with a retention time of 15 days. After that Longtime protection is needed with Backup to tape and Backup to Microsoft Azure Backup Vault.
Since 2014 the Backup data is depending on these solution configurations.

Tape Management cost a lot of time and money

The fourth DPM Backup pod got a Azure Backup Vault in the Cloud to save Tape Management time.

DPM Backup to Microsoft Azure Cloud Backup Vault.

So this is the Start of the Journey to a New Data Management Backup – DR Solution transformation. The next Couple of weeks I will search for the different scenarios and solutions on the Internet and talk with the Community looking for Best Practices. I will do Polls on Social Media and a Serie of blogposts for the Data Management Backup – DR Solution to keep the business continuity.

Magic Quadrant for Data Center Backup and Recovery Solutions

Will it be a Cloud Backup – DR Solution?
Will it be a Hybrid Cloud Backup – DR Solution?
Everything in One Management Console?
Or More then One Backup -DR Solution for the right Job?

We will see what the journey will bring us based on Best Practices  😉


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#Microsoft Azure Central Monitoring for your Team #Dashboards #Azure #ContainerInsights #Apps

Full Screen Monitoring

When you install Azure Virtual Machines or Kubernetes Clusters in the Microsoft Cloud, It’s important to monitor your workload and keep your IT department in Control for the Business. Metric alerts in Azure Monitor work on top of multi-dimensional metrics. These metrics could be platform metrics, custom metrics, popular logs from Azure Monitor converted to metrics and Application Insights metrics.

When you have important alerts, you want to take action based on your rules.

Take action on Alerts

Make your Own rules based on Alerts.

IT Department of a company has most of the time different teams with each having it’s own responsibility of workloads in the Microsoft Cloud. For example, the Servicedesk is supporting the Business and they like to see if all the Services are up and running for the Business. The Infrastructure Team wants the same, but on deep level components of the Services like Memory, Network, Storage, CPU, Performance, Availability and more. The Technical Application Team is interested if the application is running and working with all the Interfaces, Databases, and/or Azure Pipelines.

Each Team can build there own Azure Dashboard(s) in the Microsoft Cloud.

Here I Have made an easy example of my Windows Server 2019 Virtual Machines and my Azure Kubernetes Cluster in One Microsoft Azure Dashboard :

You can Start from Azure Monitor Metrics

Or you can Start from the Virtual Machine Blade here.

When you have your Azure Monitor metrics ready with the right information then you can create it in your Azure Dashboard for your Team.

 

Select another Dashboard.

Create your Own Dashboard.

Now we have the first VM with CPU percentage in the Azure Dashboard.

Here I have added More Virtual Machines to the Same Metric Chart.

When you have Azure Kubernetes Cluster to monitor :

From here you can Add Container Insights information into your Azure Dashboard :

Adding Azure Monitor Container Insights of KubeCluster01

The Azure Monitor Container Insights logs for your Dashboard information, with Pin to Dashboard.

 

When you right click with your mouse on the dashboard, you can edit your dashboard with more Azure Resources
from the tile Gallery. Here you can read more about creating your Own Azure Dashboard with Action Rules.

Azure Monitor for containers is a feature designed to monitor the performance of container workloads deployed to either Azure Container Instances or managed Kubernetes clusters hosted on Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Monitoring your containers is critical, especially when you’re running a production cluster, at scale, with multiple applications.
Azure Monitor for containers gives you performance visibility by collecting memory and processor metrics from controllers, nodes, and containers that are available in Kubernetes through the Metrics API. Container logs are also collected. After you enable monitoring from Kubernetes clusters, these metrics and logs are automatically collected for you through a containerized version of the Log Analytics agent for Linux and stored in your Log Analytics workspace.

 

Read here more about Azure Container Insights with Live Logs.

Follow and Join the community on LinkedIn

JOIN Azure DevOps Community 

JOIN Containers in the Cloud Community 

JOIN Azure Monitor and #Security Community 


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Learn more about the Azure Monitor – Insights – Network Watcher Video #Azure #Analytics #Insights #Azuremonitor

Microsoft Azure Monitor Insights

You can subscribe here for more at Azure Academy on YouTube Channel

More information on Microsoft Azure Docs


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Optimize Security and Compliancy with #Azure Security Center #ASC #Cloud #GDPR

Microsoft Azure Security Center

When you have your Hybrid Cloud Enterprise Design ready in a Microsoft HUB-Spoke model and your Security in place, you can do your optimize on your Azure workloads and keep up-to-date for your compliancy. Microsoft Azure Security Center can support you in Security and Compliancy (GDPR). Here you see my former blogposts about Microsoft Azure HUB-Spoke model architecture and Security by design :

  1. Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 1 of 4
  2. Microsoft Azure Policy and BluePrints Overview (Extra Blogpost)
  3. Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 2 of 4 “Lift and Shift”
  4. Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 3 of 4 Data Migration
  5. Managing and Working with Azure Network Security Groups (NSG) 

Security in software is always on the move and changing in this world, when you think you are ready something has changed already. That’s why I love Microsoft Azure Security Center to keep you posted and giving you advise on Security but also on Compliancy.

From here you see a high-level overview of these new possibilities in Microsoft Azure Security Center :

Security Center Overview

Microsoft Azure Security Center is working with the following navigation menu’s on the left :

  • General
  • Policy & Compliance
  • Resource Security Hygiene
  • Advanced Cloud Defense
  • Threat Protection
  • Automation & Orchestration

Microsoft Azure Secure Score Dashboard

Microsoft Azure Security Center is working with Overall Secure Score. In my Test LAB we have some work to do 😉
The Azure secure score reviews your security recommendations and prioritizes them for you, so you know which recommendations to perform first. This helps you find the most serious security vulnerabilities so you can prioritize investigation. Secure score is a tool that helps you assess your workload security posture.
Improve your secure score in Azure Security Center

Azure Security Center Recommendations

Microsoft Azure Security Center gives you advise to make your Security Score higher and you can improve immediately.

Open Subnet without NSG.

From here you can Enable a Network Security Group (NSG) on the Subnet and make your network more secure.

Creating NSG from Azure Security Center.

A subnet with NSG.

Azure Security Center Advise on Disk Encryption

  1. Description on Applying Disk Encryption on your Virtual Machines
  2. General Information, with Impact and Implementation Cost.
  3. Threats, what can happen when you don’t implement the security.
  4. Remediation Steps from Microsoft Azure Security Center
    Like this : Managing security recommendations in Azure Security Center

Security Center – Regulatory Compliance

I really like this feature in Azure Security Policy & Compliancy to help the business with GDPR and keep your Data Save by Security.

PCI DSS 3.2

ISO 27001

So now you can work on your Security and Compliance

SOC TSP

Here you find more information about Microsoft Azure Security Center

Microsoft Azure Security Center Playbooks

Integrate security solutions in Azure Security Center

 

Conclusion :

Security is a on-going process 24 hours -365 days to monitor, analyze, and prevent security issues. Working on Compliancy for your Business and making your own Security policies is important. Microsoft Azure Security Center can support you in this journey. When you Optimize your Azure workloads or make new solutions in Azure, keep it secure with Microsoft Azure Security Center.


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#Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 2 of 4 Lift and Shift #Azure #Hyperv #VMware

Microsoft Azure Hybrid Cloud Architecture HUB-Spoke Model

Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model

This blogpost about Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 2 of 4 “Lift and Shift” is part of a Datacenter transition to Microsoft Azure Intelligent Cloud. It’s talking about Azure Architecture, Security, Assessment, Azure Policy, and implementation of the design. Here you find the first blogposts :

It’s important for your business to have your Azure Architectural design with Security in place before you start your “Lift and Shift” actions, think about Identity Management and Provisioning, RBAC for your Administrators and Super Users with Two-Factor Authentication. Security with Network Security Groups and Firewalls 

Azure Multi-Factor-Authentication (MFA)

Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model : “Lift and Shift”

 

Microsoft Azure HUB subscription for “Lift and Shift”

To “Lift and Shift” to the Azure HUB Subscription we have the following in place by Design :

  1. Azure Scaffold and Hierarchy (Governance)
  2. Virtual Networks (VNET) with the Subnets and IP-Number plan
  3. ExpressRoute VPN Connection with a backup failover Site-2-Site VPN connection to Azure.
  4. Resource Groups, like Active Directory, ADFS Farm, Authentication, SQL Backend.
  5. Resource Policies
  6. Resource Locks
  7. Network Security Groups (NSG)
  8. DNS
  9. Azure Firewall
  10. Azure internal Load Balancers.
  11. Azure Storage Accounts
  12. Azure Virtual Machine sizes
  13. Azure Virtual Machine Image
  14. Managed Disks and Encryption.
  15. Redundancy for Virtual Machines
  16. Azure Key Vault for Encryption.
  17. Azure Recovery Vault ( Backup)
  18. Azure Policy
  19. Managed Identities, Azure MFA, RBAC,ADFS
  20. Azure Monitor
  21. Azure Naming Convention
  22. Azure Tagging
  23. Azure Cost Management
  24. ARM (JSON) Deployment template (for New requests)

To help you more with your Azure Virtual Datacenter have a look here

 

Azure Hierarchy

Azure Scaffold

When creating a building, scaffolding is used to create the basis of a structure. The scaffold guides the general outline and provides anchor points for more permanent systems to be mounted. An enterprise scaffold is the same: a set of flexible controls and Azure capabilities that provide structure to the environment, and anchors for services built on the public cloud. It provides the builders (IT and business groups) a foundation to create and attach new services keeping speed of delivery in mind. Read more hereI did the “Lift and Shift” between quotes because it’s important to follow the process workflow to be successful in your Datacenter transition to the Microsoft Azure Cloud.

 

Here you find all the Microsoft Azure Migration information

 

 

App Migration to Azure: Your options explained by Jeremy Winter

The Azure Migrate service assesses on-premises workloads for migration to Azure. The service assesses the migration suitability of on-premises machines, performs performance-based sizing, and provides cost estimations for running on-premises machines in Azure. If you’re contemplating lift-and-shift migrations, or are in the early assessment stages of migration, this service is for you. After the assessment, you can use services such as Azure Site Recovery and Azure Database Migration Service, to migrate the machines to Azure.

In your datacenter you got all kind of different workloads and solutions like :

  • Hyper-V Clusters
  • VMware Clusters
  • SQL Clusters
  • Print Clusters
  • File Clusters
  • Web Farm
  • Two or three tiers solutions
  • Physical Servers
  • Different Storage solutions

When you do your Datacenter Assessment it’s important to get your workloads visible, because “Lift and Shift” with Azure Site Recovery (ASR) of a Virtual Machine is an different scenario then SQL database migration to Azure. That’s why Microsoft has different tooling like :

To get your dependencies in your Datacenter on the map, Microsoft has Azure Service Maps.

Service Map automatically discovers application components on Windows and Linux systems and maps the communication between services. With Service Map, you can view your servers in the way that you think of them: as interconnected systems that deliver critical services. Service Map shows connections between servers, processes, inbound and outbound connection latency, and ports across any TCP-connected architecture, with no configuration required other than the installation of an agent.

This is very handy to get insides of your Datacenter communication workloads.

More information on using Azure Service Maps here

Installation example of Hyper-V Virtual Machines with ASR

In the following step-by-step guide we will install the Azure Site Recovery Agent on a Hyper-V host and migrate a virtual machine to Microsoft azure in a “Lift and Shift” way.

First create a Recovery Services Vault => Click Add.

Then you go to your new created Recovery Vault and click on Getting started for Site Recovery. => Prepare infrastructure and follow the steps.

When you have selected Hyper-V VM to Azure, the next step is the ASR Deployment Planner tool kit. Here you find more information on Azure Site Recovery Deployment Planner user guide for Hyper-V-to-Azure production deployments.

Then in step 3 you will make your Hyper-V Site in Microsoft azure with the Right Hyper-V Servers.

Give your Hyper-V Site the right name, especially when you have a lot of Hyper-V Clusters with Different workloads.

Here is where the registration begins with the Azure Site Recovery (ASR) Agent installation on your Hyper-V Host.
Follow the five steps and make sure your Hyper-V Node can access Azure via secure port 443(https) via Proxy or firewall rules.

Install as Administrator the AzureSiteRecoveryProvider.exe file on the Hyper-V host.

Click on Next

Choose your Installation location and Click on Install.

The Azure Site Recovery agent is installed and need to be registered with your Azure Recovery Vault.
For this you need the key file from the Azure portal to download at step 4. Click on Register.

Browse to your downloaded key file from the Azure Portal Recovery Vault and click on Next.

When you have a proxy you can select that, otherwise select Next.

Now your Azure ASR Agent on Hyper-V is registered with your Azure Site Recovery Vault.

In the Azure Portal you will see your Hyper-V Node, in my Demo LAB it’s WAC01.MVPLAB.LOCAL.

In the next step you can choose an existing Storage account, or a new one with different specifications.

Check also after storage your network in azure.

In this step we create the replication policy.

Set your own settings.

The Replication policy is added to the configuration.

When you click on OK the Infrastructure is done.

We are now going to enable the replication :

Select your Source and location.

here you select your target Storage account, Resource Group and Network.

The connections are made between Hyper-V, ASR Vault and Storage.

Select the Virtual Machine(s) from the Hyper-V host to replicate for migration with ASR

Configure the properties.

Click on OK

From here the Replication will begin from Hyper-V Host to Azure  🙂

Azure Sire Recovery Replication Job status.

Replicated item(s)

To make your recovery plan and do the failover for migration to azure, you have to wait until the first replication is done for 100%.

Azure Site Recovery Plan for failover (Migration)

Make recovery Plan.

Click OK

The Target in the recovery plan can only be selected when the first replication is done.

Overview of the Azure Site Recovery Migration failover.

From the Hyper-V Host you can pause or see the replication health status.

Hyper-V Health Status

Azure Migrate Virtual Machines using Azure Site Recovery video with Microsoft Jeff Woolsey

Microsoft Azure Data Migration Assistant

To migrate your SQL Backend to Microsoft Azure, use this step-by-step instructions help you perform your first assessment for migrating to on-premises SQL Server, SQL Server running on an Azure VM, or Azure SQL Database, by using Data Migration Assistant.

Conclusion :

“Lift and Shift” Migration of your complete datacenter exists of different scenarios for your workloads to Microsoft Azure. With that said, Microsoft has for each scenario tooling available to get the job done. It’s all about a good Architectural Design, Security in place, People and process to get your Intelligent Azure Cloud up and running for your Business.

Next Blogpost Microsoft Azure Hub-Spoke model by Enterprise Design 3 of 4 :
SQL assessment and Data Migration to Azure


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#Microsoft Azure Security Center Investigation Dashboard (Preview) #Azure #Security #ASC #Cloud


Yesterday I was playing with Mimikatz (Hackertool) for Security pen tests and it was not working because Azure Security Center Quarantined the file 🙂

On my Surface I got an Azure monitoring Agent running

Microsoft Azure Security Center Investigation Dashboard

The Investigation feature in Security Center allows you to triage, understand the scope, and track down the root cause of a potential security incident.
The intent is to facilitate the investigation process by linking all entities (security alerts, users, computers and incidents) that are involved with the incident you are investigating. Security Center can do this by correlating relevant data with any involved entities and exposing this correlation in using a live graph that helps you navigate through the objects and visualize relevant information.

Microsoft Azure Security Center found also a rare SVCHOST Service on my Surface, and the ASC investigation dashboard gives you great overview of the security risk.

You can Run a Playbook based on this alert Rare SVCHOST Service

Try it yourself, more information about Azure Security Center Investigation Dashboard (Preview) can be found here

Microsoft azure Security Center

 

 


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Protect your #HyperV Virtual Machines from Windows Admin Center with #Azure Site Recovery #WAC #ASR


Windows Admin Center is an evolution of Windows Server in-box management tools; it’s a single pane of glass that consolidates all aspects of local and remote server management. As a locally deployed, browser-based management experience, an Internet connection and Azure aren’t required. Windows Admin Center gives you full control of all aspects of your deployment, including private networks that aren’t Internet-connected.

You can download Microsoft Windows Admin Center from here


Windows Admin Center supports several optional features that integrate with Azure services. Use the following information to configure the Windows Admin Center gateway to support these Azure integration features.  Configuring Azure Integration in WAC

When you have Azure integration in place with Microsoft Windows Admin Center you can use Azure Site Recovery (ASR).
Azure Site Recovery is an Azure service that replicates workloads running on VMs so that your business-critical infrastructure is protected in case of a disaster. Learn more about Azure Site Recovery

Protect your Hyper-V Virtual Machines from Windows Admin Center with Azure Site Recovery

.Use the following information to configure replication settings and create a recovery plan from within the Azure portal, enabling Windows Admin Center to start VM replication and protect your VMs.

 

Follow Jeff Woolsey Principal Program Manager Windows Server / Hybrid Cloud

Windows Admin Center Just Rocks also for our PowerShell Administrators 😉

Start Today with Windows Admin Center

#MVPbuzz