Last week, Microsoft shipped a series of improvements to Windows Azure that were focused on cost control and lower barrier to entry. While they updated their cloud services – including SSL support for Windows Azure Web Sites and introducing a new integration service – Microsoft’s primary updates were targeted directly at developers who are considering the cloud for their dev and test environments.
Microsoft recently announced general availability of AMQP support for Windows Azure Service Bus. The feature has been in preview for about six months now and allows interoperability between applications built on various technologies and different operating systems.
The recently released Windows Azure Service Bus Client SDK provides support for task based versions of all asynchronous APIs in addition to performance improvements.
Windows Azure SDK 2.0 provides numerous enhancements for websites, cloud services, storage, service bus including new PowerShell cmdlets for automating the management of Azure based sites.
Microsoft WebMatrix 3 provides an ability for the developers to create and manage Windows Azure based websites including support for remote editing, Git and TFS source control.
The recently released update to Windows Azure includes improvements to virtual networks, virtual machines, cloud services, Linux SSH support, remote powershell in addition to a new SDK for Ruby developed in association with AppFog.
Windows Azure has been updated with support for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Windows and Linux virtual machine images, virtual networks with persistent private IPs, increased OS Size including hourly billing mechanism for SQL Server and BizTalk Server virtual machine images.
A new open-source contribution from Microsoft uses the Windows Azure Service Bus to provide scale out support for real-time Node.js applications. This module, called socket.io-servicebus, connects multiple servers running the popular Socket.IO module. This contribution is yet another example of Microsoft embracing Node.js and integrating it with Microsoft products and services.
Microsoft recently updated database lifecycle management guidance page with SQL Server DLM diagram along with curated resources for SQL Server Data Tools, SQL Server Management Studio and Windows Azure SQL Database.
Microsoft has announced the availability of Windows Azure Active Directory, new backup service with support for incremental backups including several monitoring and log improvements.
Microsoft Office Developer Tools - Search Configuration Template, App Validation and Azure Debugging
The recently released Microsoft Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2012 provides a new search configuration project template, ability to validate apps during the submission process and Windows Azure debugging.
Python Tools for Visual Studio 2.0 alpha release includes support for Intellisense, Virtualenv, Windows Azure, Cloud Service, Web Sites and Client Libraries.
The recently released Windows Azure updates include support for Hadoop service, HTML5/JS, CORS, PhoneGap including Mercurial, Dropbox, CodePlex and Bitbucket deployment integration.
Microsoft has recently released several updates to Windows Azure with support for Android, Active Directory, Application monitoring with HTTP response codes, new five languages including expansion of Azure Store to 22 more countries.
Windows Azure experienced a 9 hour outage on February 22 that affected all users who relied on the storage system, including those using Team Foundation Service. InfoQ examines the details that have emerged surrounding the root causes of the failure.