The Latest Azure Updates: Inspire; Azure Networking Services; Stream Analyics; Export controls

July 22 2019

The Microsoft Inspire event in Las Vegas brought the channel to life with numerous announcements of new collaborations with Microsoft and fresh partnerships. Perhaps one of the biggest announcements to come out of the week of Inspire is a major partnership between Microsoft and AT&T, reportedly worth $2 billion. By 2024, AT&T will shift all of its non-network workloads to Azure, while in the meantime its workforce will adopt Office 365. However, the deal is not a universal win for Microsoft, as IBM took over the role of maintaining AT&T's business operations through its acquisition of RedHat.

Azure Sphere update 19.07 entered public preview, although the Retail OS feed will continue to offer 19.06 for another two weeks. The key change was an update to patch vulnerability CV-2019-5436.

For developers, the team is offering new promotional pricing for the Basic Linux App Service Plan. Although the results vary based on what meters are in-use, it's possible to cut costs 66 percent. Additionally, a free version of the App Service Plan for Linux is available for those getting started.

Among new announcements, Microsoft offered a wide-range of different attributes for Stream Analytics, such as output to Data Lake Storage Gen2, Pattern Matching Function, support for Parquet format,  analytics as aggregates, or egress to Blob Storage with managed identities.  With the introduction multi-protocol data access for Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2, users will be able to rely on data tiering, logging, soft deletes and snapshots. The multi-protocol approach is part of "silo busting" by using preexisting object storage capability setup on top of Blob storage, accessible with either the ADLS API or Blob storage API. "This capability is unprecedented for cloud analytics services because not only does this support multiple protocols, this supports multiple storage paradigms," stated Stephen Wu, Azure Storage senior program manager.


Keiko Harada, senior program manager for Azure Monitoring and Diagnostics, announced the integration of the Prometheus open source monitoring system with Azure Monitor for containers. The integration negates the need for a standalone Prometheus server. He shared ways to use the Kusto Query Language to assess Azure Kubernetes Services data with Prometheus. Also for monitoring, Microsoft touted Apache Kafka baked into MileIQ for mileage logging and reporting for drivers. MileIQ's team picked Azure Event Hubs for Kafka because it offered managed PaaS, protocol level controls and streaming to Blob Storage.

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