|By Kevin Remde||
|January 20, 2013 04:00 PM EST||
The article I’m writing for part 13 our “31 Days of Servers in the Cloud” series involves using App Controller to create a virtual machine. But to do this, you first need to connect and associate App Controller (a component of System Center 2012) with your Windows Azure subscription.
So in today’s Part 12, as a preliminary document for part 13, in this article I’m going to show you how to connect App Controller to your Windows Azure account.
To do this, we need to have a few preliminaries in place:
- You have a Windows Azure subscription, and have requested the ability to preview the use of Windows Azure virtual machines. (If you don’t have an account, you can start a free 90-day trial HERE.)
- You have System Center 2012 App Controller installed. (Download the System Center 2012 Private Cloud evaluation software HERE.)
NOTE: In my examples I’m using System Center 2012 SP1 App Controller, which at the time of this writing is available to TechNet and MSDN subscribers and volume license customers only; but will very soon be generally available. I will update this blog post as soon as that happens.
Connect App Controller to your Windows Azure subscription
To make this happen, you first have to have a management certificate in place. This makes up the bulk of the complexity involved. It must be a management certificate that has a key length of at least 2048 bits and resides in the Personal certificate store. To make this all work, you’ll need both a .cer file, which is the exported certificate that you’ll upload as the management certificate in Windows Azure, and a.pfx (personal information exchange) certificate file that you’ll use to connect App Controller to your Azure subscription. You can create this self-signed certificate easily in one of two ways:
- If you have Visual Studio installed, you can use the makecert command from the Visual Studio command prompt to create the certificate and at the same time create the exported .cer file that you can upload into Azure. Ore…
- More likely if, like me, you’re not a developer, you’ll use IIS (Internet Information Services) to create the self-signed certificate. Add IIS either as a role to a Windows Server, or even as an to Windows 8.
For my example, I’m going to use IIS that I’m going to install on Windows 8.
Install IIS on Windows 8
In the “Turn Windows features on or off” section of the “Add or Remove Programs” (just search from your Start Screen), add the IIS Management Console feature:
Generate the Self-Signed Certificate
Once installed, open up the IIS Manager. Double-click on “Server Certificates”, and then in the Actions pane on the right, select “Create Self-Signed Certificate”.
Give your certificate a friendly name that you’ll recognize later, and click OK.
Export the .pfx File
Next, we need to export the new certificate as a .pfx file. (This is the file we’ll later use to connect App Controller to our Windows Azure subscription.) You can create this from IIS Management as well. With your new certificate selected, click export in the Actions pane. Choose a file name and destination for the file, set a password, and click OK.
Once this is done, and if you have no further use of IIS on your Windows 8 machine, you can remove it just as easily as you added it. You won’t need it for anything more here.
Generate the .cer file.
Now we need a .cer file – the exported certificate that we will upload into our Windows Azure subscription. The certificate we just created is in the Local Computer certificates store, so we could either need to use MMC and the “Certificates” snap-in to get to and export the certificate from there, OR we could import the .pfx into the personal certificate store and then export it from there. I’ll describe the latter..
Run certmgr.msc as a quick way to open up MMC connected to the current user’s certificate store, and navigate to Personal –> Certificates
Right-Click on Certificates, and under All Tasks, select Import…
In the Certificate Import Wizard, click Next, and then browse to and select your recently created .pfx file. (NOTE: You’ll have to change the file type you’re looking for to include .pfx files in order to see it as you navigate)
Enter the password you used to secure your .pfx file, and click Next.
Leave the Certificate Store as the Personal store. Click Next, and then click Finish to complete the import.
Now in the list of your certificates in the personal certificate store, you should see a certificate that contains a friendly name you used earlier (in my case it’s “MyAzureMgmtCert”). Right-click on your certificate, and under All Tasks, select Export.
Just use the defaults through this wizard, browse to a location for and name your certificate:
Click Next and then Finish.
Okay. Now you have both the .pfx and the .cer files you’ll need to connect App Controller to Windows Azure.
Upload the .cer to Windows Azure.
In the Windows Azure portal, at the bottom left, select Settings, and then click Upload.
Browse to and select your .cer file:
Click the Check Box, and in a few seconds you should see a notification telling you that your upload is successful. You should also see your certificate added to the list of management certificates
Connect App Controller to Windows Azure
Before we make the connection, we’ll need to have our Windows Azure Subscription ID. The subscription ID is a long set of numbers, formatted to look something like this: 00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000
You can get this a number of different ways.
- If you have any storage defined or any virtual machines created, you can select them and see the subscription ID on the bottom right of the “quick glance” information.
- If you have Windows Azure PowerShell installed and connected to your subscription, you can simply run the “Get-AzureSubscription” cmdlet to see the Subscription ID.
- Or most easily since we’ve just uploaded one, you can see the subscription ID as one of the columns in our list of management certificates.
Copy the subscription ID to the clipboard.
Now we’re ready to open up App Controller and log in as your administrative account.
In the Overview pane, under Public Clouds, click “Connect a Windows Azure Subscription”
Paste your subscription ID into the appropriate field, browse to and select your .pfx certificate file, enter the password, and give your connection a name and optional description.
Once you click OK, you should soon see that you have a Windows Azure subscription connected. If you had any virtual machines or services running in Windows Azure, you’ll be able to see those represented here also.
And that’s it! You’re connected!
Now you can do really cool things like using App Controller to create Virtual Machines in Windows Azure.
I hope you found this useful! If you have any questions or comments, please add them to the comments and we can discuss them.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Aruna Ravichandran, vice president of DevOps Product and Solutions Marketing at CA Technologies, has been named co-conference chair of DevOps at Cloud Expo 2017. The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Apr. 30, 2017 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,907
A Man in the Middle attack, or MITM, is a situation wherein a malicious entity can read/write data that is being transmitted between two or more systems (in most cases, between you and the website that you are surfing). MITMs are common in China, thanks to the “Great Cannon.” The “Great Cannon” is slightly different from the “The Great Firewall.” The firewall monitors web traffic moving in and out of China and blocks prohibited content. The Great Cannon, on the other hand, acts as a man in the...
Apr. 30, 2017 07:30 AM EDT Reads: 544
To more closely examine the variety of ways in which IT departments around the world are integrating cloud services, and the effect hybrid IT has had on their organizations and IT job roles, SolarWinds recently released the SolarWinds IT Trends Report 2017: Portrait of a Hybrid Organization. This annual study consists of survey-based research that explores significant trends, developments, and movements related to and directly affecting IT and IT professionals.
Apr. 30, 2017 05:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,941
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Val...
Apr. 30, 2017 03:45 AM EDT Reads: 9,474
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Apr. 30, 2017 03:30 AM EDT Reads: 6,269
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor – all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
Apr. 30, 2017 02:45 AM EDT Reads: 9,278
Is your application too difficult to manage? Do changes take dozens of developers hundreds of hours to execute, and frequently result in downtime across all your site’s functions? It sounds like you have a monolith! A monolith is one of the three main software architectures that define most applications. Whether you’ve intentionally set out to create a monolith or not, it’s worth at least weighing the pros and cons of the different architectural approaches and deciding which one makes the most s...
Apr. 29, 2017 07:45 PM EDT Reads: 3,049
Enterprise architects are increasingly adopting multi-cloud strategies as they seek to utilize existing data center assets, leverage the advantages of cloud computing and avoid cloud vendor lock-in. This requires a globally aware traffic management strategy that can monitor infrastructure health across data centers and end-user experience globally, while responding to control changes and system specification at the speed of today’s DevOps teams. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Josh Gray, Chie...
Apr. 29, 2017 10:45 AM EDT Reads: 3,613
Cloud promises the agility required by today’s digital businesses. As organizations adopt cloud based infrastructures and services, their IT resources become increasingly dynamic and hybrid in nature. Managing these require modern IT operations and tools. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Raj Sundaram, Senior Principal Product Manager at CA Technologies, will discuss how to modernize your IT operations in order to proactively manage your hybrid cloud and IT environments. He will be sharing be...
Apr. 29, 2017 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,060
When you decide to launch a startup company, business advisors, counselors, bankers and armchair know-it-alls will tell you that the first thing you need to do is get funding. While there is some validity to that boilerplate piece of wisdom, the availability of and need for startup funding has gone through a dramatic transformation over the past decade, and the next few years will see even more of a shift. A perfect storm of events is causing this seismic shift. On the macroeconomic side this ...
Apr. 29, 2017 07:45 AM EDT Reads: 704
This recent research on cloud computing from the Register delves a little deeper than many of the "We're all adopting cloud!" surveys we've seen. They found that meaningful cloud adoption and the idea of the cloud-first enterprise are still not reality for many businesses. The Register's stats also show a more gradual cloud deployment trend over the past five years, not any sort of explosion. One important takeaway is that coherence across internal and external clouds is essential for IT right n...
Apr. 28, 2017 05:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,970
Back in February of 2017, Andrew Clay Schafer of Pivotal tweeted the following: “seriously tho, the whole software industry is stuck on deployment when we desperately need architecture and telemetry.” Intrigue in a 140 characters. For me, I hear Andrew saying, “we’re jumping to step 5 before we’ve successfully completed steps 1-4.”
Apr. 28, 2017 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,979
In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Scott Davis, CTO of Embotics, will discuss how automation can provide the dynamic management required to cost-effectively deliver microservices and container solutions at scale. He will discuss how flexible automation is the key to effectively bridging and seamlessly coordinating both IT and developer needs for component orchestration across disparate clouds – an increasingly important requirement at today’s multi-cloud enterprise.
Apr. 28, 2017 06:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,479
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
Apr. 27, 2017 09:15 PM EDT Reads: 7,452
In large enterprises, environment provisioning and server provisioning account for a significant portion of the operations team's time. This often leaves users frustrated while they wait for these services. For instance, server provisioning can take several days and sometimes even weeks. At the same time, digital transformation means the need for server and environment provisioning is constantly growing. Organizations are adopting agile methodologies and software teams are increasing the speed ...
Apr. 27, 2017 08:30 PM EDT Reads: 3,536
Developers want to create better apps faster. Static clouds are giving way to scalable systems, with dynamic resource allocation and application monitoring. You won't hear that chant from users on any picket line, but helping developers to create better apps faster is the mission of Lee Atchison, principal cloud architect and advocate at New Relic Inc., based in San Francisco. His singular job is to understand and drive the industry in the areas of cloud architecture, microservices, scalability ...
Apr. 27, 2017 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 3,742
Software as a service (SaaS), one of the earliest and most successful cloud services, has reached mainstream status. According to Cisco, by 2019 more than four-fifths (83 percent) of all data center traffic will be based in the cloud, up from 65 percent today. The majority of this traffic will be applications. Businesses of all sizes are adopting a variety of SaaS-based services – everything from collaboration tools to mission-critical commerce-oriented applications. The rise in SaaS usage has m...
Apr. 22, 2017 06:15 PM EDT Reads: 5,090
The proper isolation of resources is essential for multi-tenant environments. The traditional approach to isolate resources is, however, rather heavyweight. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Igor Drobiazko, co-founder of elastic.io, drew upon his own experience with operating a Docker container-based infrastructure on a large scale and present a lightweight solution for resource isolation using microservices. He also discussed the implementation of microservices in data and application integrat...
Apr. 22, 2017 05:45 AM EDT Reads: 6,514
We'd all like to fulfill that "find a job you love and you'll never work a day in your life" cliché. But in reality, every job (even if it's our dream job) comes with its downsides. For you, the constant fight against shadow IT might get on your last nerves. For your developer coworkers, infrastructure management is the roadblock that stands in the way of focusing on coding. As you watch more and more applications and processes move to the cloud, technology is coming to developers' rescue-most r...
Apr. 22, 2017 04:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,269
2016 has been an amazing year for Docker and the container industry. We had 3 major releases of Docker engine this year , and tremendous increase in usage. The community has been following along and contributing amazing Docker resources to help you learn and get hands-on experience. Here’s some of the top read and viewed content for the year. Of course releases are always really popular, particularly when they fit requests we had from the community.
Apr. 22, 2017 03:45 AM EDT Reads: 3,817