Archives For SDK

mind-the-gap

UPDATE: This post was written in 2014, and continues to stand the test of time. The Azure universe keeps expanding and the rate at which services and features make their way to general availability is astounding. This can definitely become a challenge. Nevertheless, don’t think of this as a hindrance to your business because the reality is that it’s an opportunity. Through the use of DevOps and agile business processes, the fast pace that is the cloud today, empowers us to respond to customer demands and capitalize on what could have been missed opportunities.

Times have changed, Keep Up!

Building a cloud solution is a dynamic experience. Most cloud platforms evolve very fast and churn out new SDK (Software Development Kit) versions every couple months. Naturally, this also means that prior versions deprecate at a much faster rate than our industry is accustomed to.

Platforms don’t live forever anymore. Windows XP, has been around for far too long. It was supported for so long, that many software vendors never felt the need adapt to the new releases of Windows. In 2014, some of these vendors are obliged to rewrite most of their software, because the ecosystem they used to build their software has evolved at a different pace.

SDKs used to build our cloud solutions have a reasonably short lifespan. Take the Microsoft Azure .NET SDK version 1.5, it was released in September of 2011 and was retired in June of 2014. Version 1.5 of the SDK has lived for 32 months. In contrast Windows XP was released on August 24th, 2001 and was said to retire on January 12, 2016. That’s 172 months of support!

As I am writing this post, I realize that solutions who haven’t kept up with the latest SDKs may be in trouble, June is just a few months away.

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On July 31 2013, the Windows Azure team has released the Windows Azure SDK 2.1 and it’s full of goodies!

Visual Studio Server Explorer
In Server Explorer, instantly view information about running cloud services, storage accounts, virtual machines, and service bus resources. Also in Server Explorer, filter your view of resources by subscription, region, or both to show only the information that you care about right now.

  • Information is automatically populated so that you don’t have to request the information on each node to see the information.
  • You can filter the resources that appear so that you can focus on your current work without being distracted by information from unrelated projects. See How to: Filter Windows Azure Resources in Server Explorer.
  • Nodes for cloud services are now labeled by deployment so that you can easily locate Production and Staging deployments.

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Christmas_presentsI’m really excited about today’s (April 30th 2013) Windows Azure SKD version 2.0 release. I take this as an early XMAS gift for all Windows Azure Developers and above all its got tons of awesome goodness!

The first thing I noticed when I upgraded my projects to use the new SDK, was the speed of the Windows Azure Emulator, it just doesn’t compare. What a time saver!

To upgrade your project download the new Windows Azure SDK 2.0 for Visual Studio 2012. Once you have finished installing the project, you will need to update the Windows Azure Configuration Manager through Nuget. Then right click on your cloud project and navigate to the Application tab. Click on the Update button. If for some reason your cloud services will cycle continuously, it might be because the Microsoft.WindowsAzure.ServiceRuntime reference in your projects haven’t been updated,. You can do so manually by referencing the DLL typically found in
Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows Azure\.NET SDK\v2.0\

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