|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.
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, will provide an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profes...
Feb. 13, 2016 03:45 AM EST Reads: 241
Father business cycles and digital consumers are forcing enterprises to respond faster to customer needs and competitive demands. Successful integration of DevOps and Agile development will be key for business success in today’s digital economy. In his session at DevOps Summit, Pradeep Prabhu, Co-Founder & CEO of Cloudmunch, covered the critical practices that enterprises should consider to seamlessly integrate Agile and DevOps processes, barriers to implementing this in the enterprise, and pr...
Feb. 13, 2016 03:00 AM EST Reads: 462
Sensors and effectors of IoT are solving problems in new ways, but small businesses have been slow to join the quantified world. They’ll need information from IoT using applications as varied as the businesses themselves. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Meike, Distinguished Engineer, Director of Technology Innovation at Intuit, showed how IoT manufacturers can use open standards, public APIs and custom apps to enable the Quantified Small Business. He used a Raspberry Pi to connect sensors...
Feb. 13, 2016 02:30 AM EST Reads: 366
Let’s face it, embracing new storage technologies, capabilities and upgrading to new hardware often adds complexity and increases costs. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Seth Oxenhorn, Vice President of Business Development & Alliances at FalconStor, will discuss how a truly heterogeneous software-defined storage approach can add value to legacy platforms and heterogeneous environments. The result reduces complexity, significantly lowers cost, and provides IT organizations with improved effi...
Feb. 13, 2016 12:45 AM EST Reads: 273
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection.
Feb. 12, 2016 10:00 PM EST Reads: 245
Data-as-a-Service is the complete package for the transformation of raw data into meaningful data assets and the delivery of those data assets. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lakshmi Randall, an industry expert, analyst and strategist, will address: What is DaaS (Data-as-a-Service)? Challenges addressed by DaaS Vendors that are enabling DaaS Architecture options for DaaS
Feb. 12, 2016 09:45 PM EST Reads: 386
SYS-CON Events announced today that Catchpoint Systems, Inc., a provider of innovative web and infrastructure monitoring solutions, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit at 18th Cloud Expo New York, which will take place June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Catchpoint is a leading Digital Performance Analytics company that provides unparalleled insight into customer-critical services to help consistently deliver an amazing customer experience. Designed...
Feb. 12, 2016 06:00 PM EST Reads: 404
Companies can harness IoT and predictive analytics to sustain business continuity; predict and manage site performance during emergencies; minimize expensive reactive maintenance; and forecast equipment and maintenance budgets and expenditures. Providing cost-effective, uninterrupted service is challenging, particularly for organizations with geographically dispersed operations.
Feb. 12, 2016 06:00 PM EST
When building large, cloud-based applications that operate at a high scale, it’s important to maintain a high availability and resilience to failures. In order to do that, you must be tolerant of failures, even in light of failures in other areas of your application. “Fly two mistakes high” is an old adage in the radio control airplane hobby. It means, fly high enough so that if you make a mistake, you can continue flying with room to still make mistakes. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee...
Feb. 12, 2016 04:45 PM EST
With the proliferation of both SQL and NoSQL databases, organizations can now target specific fit-for-purpose database tools for their different application needs regarding scalability, ease of use, ACID support, etc. Platform as a Service offerings make this even easier now, enabling developers to roll out their own database infrastructure in minutes with minimal management overhead. However, this same amount of flexibility also comes with the challenges of picking the right tool, on the right ...
Feb. 12, 2016 04:30 PM EST Reads: 192
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
Feb. 12, 2016 04:15 PM EST Reads: 432
Join us at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2016 – June 7-9 at the Javits Center in New York City and November 1-3 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – and deliver your unique message in a way that is striking and unforgettable by taking advantage of SYS-CON's unmatched high-impact, result-driven event / media packages.
Feb. 12, 2016 03:00 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
Feb. 12, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 455
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
Feb. 12, 2016 02:15 PM EST
How Best to Integrate Cloud Foundry into Your Existing Ecosystem By @Gidrontxt | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps
As someone who has been dedicated to automation and Application Release Automation (ARA) technology for almost six years now, one of the most common questions I get asked regards Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS). Specifically, people want to know whether release automation is still needed when a PaaS is in place, and why. Isn't that what a PaaS provides? A solution to the deployment and runtime challenges of an application? Why would anyone using a PaaS then need an automation engine with workflow ...
Feb. 12, 2016 01:45 PM EST Reads: 236
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
Feb. 12, 2016 01:00 PM EST Reads: 236
SYS-CON Events announced today that Avere Systems, a leading provider of enterprise storage for the hybrid cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Avere delivers a more modern architectural approach to storage that doesn’t require the overprovisioning of storage capacity to achieve performance, overspending on expensive storage media for inactive data or the overbuilding of data centers ...
Feb. 12, 2016 12:30 PM EST Reads: 120
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies adopt disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevO...
Feb. 12, 2016 12:30 PM EST Reads: 269
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
Feb. 12, 2016 11:45 AM EST Reads: 458
Recognizing the need to identify and validate information security professionals’ competency in securing cloud services, the two leading membership organizations focused on cloud and information security, the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and (ISC)^2, joined together to develop an international cloud security credential that reflects the most current and comprehensive best practices for securing and optimizing cloud computing environments.
Feb. 12, 2016 11:45 AM EST