Building Ubuntu in Azure

Ubuntu in Azure
How to Build Ubuntu in Azure

Most people do not associate Linux with Microsoft, but Windows Azure offers some great options for Linux VMs. Pricing is competitive with Amazon EC2, and the actual server provisioning in Azure is very fast for a Linux VM. I’m going to walk through the basic steps of getting Ubuntu in Azure. Creating the VM, SSH connections, and basic configuration for a web server. Ubuntu is a Linux distro based on Debian, and is one of the most popular operating systems for hosting web applications.

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Azure RDP Troubleshooting


Azure RDP TroubleshootingIf you’re connecting to an Azure VM from a corporate network you may run into RDP connectivity issues. By default your RDP client will try to connect to the server over the Internet using port 3389. Most corporate and large organizational Internet Proxies and Firewalls block outbound connectivity to port 3389. You’ll see the ugly message to the left when trying to connect. Luckily, its pretty easy to configure the public ports on your VM. Here’s how I modify it.

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Using Loggly in Powershell


Loggly DashboardLoggly is a Logging as a Service provider that’s become very popular lately. Loggly allows Applications and Systems to write log data into the cloud using various application libraries. But at a very basic level you can post log data to Loggly’s RESTful API. Loggly then provides a dashboard for searching and filtering log data. Alerts can also be created to notify you of different log events occurring.

In Powershell we’ve all logged information to the Windows Eventlog or even text files. But if you’re running multiple scripts on multiple servers, logging to each server’s Event Log quickly becomes unwieldy. Writing logs to a central location is much more useful. A cloud service is perfect for this, and Loggly does it well.

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ASP.NET MVC Authentication with Auth0


Historically application developers have had two choices when it came to authentication for their applications. Implement their own login processing, or rely on a SSO system like CA Siteminder or Oracle Access Manager. Both approaches have their downsides. Even when using one of the ASP.NET Providers, its a lot of work to build your own Identity and Authentication system. An SSO system can unburden developers from dealing with security but the upfront costs for OAM or Siteminder can easily be cost prohibitive for small companies or startups. Auth0 is presenting a 3rd option, Identity Infrastructure as a Service. Auth0 is claiming to provide a more modern solution for authentication to just about any type of developer, that’s easy to implement and maintain. I decided to put Auth0 to the test and see how easily I could setup authentication on an MVC Application.

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