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InfoQ Homepage News Microsoft Azure Government Cloud: New Online Training Material Available

Microsoft Azure Government Cloud: New Online Training Material Available

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Microsoft recently expanded its Microsoft Learn platform with an introductory class on Azure Government. Azure Government is Microsoft's solution for hosting United States government solutions on its cloud.

Government services have unique requirements in terms of security and compliance, but public cloud solutions can provide scale, elasticity and resilience that is not easy to be achieved with on premises solutions. Available in eight U.S. regions, namely Chicago, Dallas, New York, Phoenix, San Antonio, Seattle, Silicon Valley, and Washington DC, it is specifically built for the U.S. government needs. As such, it follows numerous compliance standards, from both the U.S. and abroad (E.U., India, Australia, Chine, Singapore and others). Some of the compliance standards are Level 5 Department of Defence approval, FedRAMP High and DISA L4 (42 services) and L5 (45 services in scope). Microsoft Azure Government is operated using completely separate physical infrastructure within Azure.

Azure Government comes with its own marketplace, which is different than the Azure global marketplace. The main difference is that it supports a different set of images. Another difference is that only Bring Your Own License (BYOL) and Pay-as-you-Go (PayGo) images are available. Azure Government comes with its own blog, extensive documentation and offers a 90-days free trial of up to $1500.

Azure Government is competing head on head with Amazon AWS GovCloud US. GovCloud US is similar to AWS, available in two US regions (US-East and US-West) and offers its own marketplace.. AWS GovCloud US is supporting a similar set of compliance standards as Azure Government, with support for standards such as FedRAMP, DoD CC SRG IL2, IL4 and IL 5, Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS), International Traffic and Arms Regulations (ITAR) and others. Govcloud US supports a wide range of AWS services. Both clouds are available not just to federal agencies and ministries, but also to state and locally based agencies, which would benefit quite a lot by moving their workflows to Azure Government or AWS GovCloud.

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