Microsoft Azure

A long while again I spent quite a bit of time working with Azure, before life took its toll and my priorities shifted. As I’ve gone nuts with Office 365 I’ve been unable to expand my Azure knowledge… But Office 365 has turned in to a commodity. So once again it’s time to pull the dusty old Azure cape out of the close, and brush up on my knowledge. As always, learning (or re-learning in this case!) means I’m starting from the beginning. Follow by plowing through the easy bits to ensure they’re fresh in my ‘little grey cells’.

Project Red Dog

Code-named for a nasty disease (Rubella translates to Red Dog in Dutch…) Microsoft Azure was first released on February 2010 as Windows Azure. It’s Microsoft’s cloud-computing service for building, testing, deploying, running, and baking applications and services though Microsoft-managed data centers.

In the last 9 years Microsoft added over 600 services. Once I’ve written this article it’ll probably be 603 services.


Azure has 54 regions (locations) worldwide, and that number is only growing as the service expands.

In Azure, a region is a set of data-centers deployed within a latency-defined perimeter and connected through a dedicated regional low-latency network.

Global network

Not only does Microsoft Azure provide you with a butt-load of regions to host your precious apps, data, and services. Oh no, it has a network backbone that, is ridiculously large!

The backbone network that powers Microsoft Azure was actually already (partly) in existence) before the service was announced! We’re talking decades of continuous investment here. There’s actually 100 000 miles (160 000 km for us normal folks) of lit fiber optic and undersea cable systems tying the data-centers together.

That’s dedicated networking people! All the IP traffic between data-centers actually stays within the Microsoft Global network and never enters the public internet…

Azure Series Index

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