Azure Updates: Outage; Enterprise-scale reference architecture; WebLogic Server; Power Fx

April 12 2021

Microsoft experienced its second worldwide outage in recent weeks on Thursday, April 1. The issue affected Azure portal and even the Azure Status page. Reports began cropping up on the website Downdetector around 5 p.m. US Eastern Time. The outage also affected Skype, Bing, Teams and Office 365. Microsoft indicated the issues stemmed from DNS, reporting in the midst of the outage, "Microsoft rerouted traffic to our resilient DNS capabilities and are seeing improvement in service availability. We are continuing to investigate the cause of the DNS issue."

Microsoft senior cloud advocate Thomas Maurer shared details on how IT teams can leverage enterprise-scale reference implementations. Enterprise-scale landing zone architectures provide modular designs with reference implementations and ways to start off with landing zones. He highlighted hub and spoke and virtual WAN options, together with diagrams of potential architectures.

Among general updates, Backup supports backup and restore for Dedicated Host. Public previews include Monitor container insights support for Arc-enabled Kubernetes extension model, platform support migration of Cloud Services classic to Resource Manager, and backup and restore for VM Scale Sets with flexible orchestration. A variety of Security Center updates appeared in March such as Firewall management integration, recommendation data in Resource Graph, and two public preview updates. Together with changes to the App Service Authentication portal experience, Data Factory is entering availability in Norway East and UAE North and Cloud Services extended support is GA.

Microsoft has launched Power Fx as an open source, low-code programming language, now out in public preview. It leverages GitHub, Azure DevOps, and VSCode as well as a custom connectors for C# and JavaScript.

South Africa's government published its draft National Data and Cloud Policy. Business Insider reports that data generated in South Africa is the property of the country. It calls for law enforcement to keep copies of any exported data and identifies datacenters as strategic assets.

Principal program manager Reza Rahman announced a major release of Oracle WebLogic Server for Azure VMs. The release was jointly developed with the WebLogic team and supports Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, Oracle Linux and Oracle Database. Rahman wrote:

Earlier releases focused on a basic set of use cases such as single working instance and clustering. This release expands features to cover most migration scenarios. Some of the features added include distributed caching via Coherence, consolidated logging via ELK, Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate management, Domain Name System (DNS) configuration, and support for Oracle HTTP Server (OHS) as a load-balancing option. The database integration feature supports Azure PostgreSQL, Azure SQL, and Oracle Database running on OCI or Azure.

The solutions offer a variety of base images, with enhancements planned to support Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Customers have the option to Bring-Your-Own-License for customizations.

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