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Microsoft’s new cloud features could set the pace for future solutions


Microsoft has been known as a technology pioneer for decades, with active projects and support across a number of different verticals. Microsoft’s Azure platform is progressively making a name for itself, with its adoption base growing from 20 percent to 34 percent from 2016 to 2017, Seeking Alpha reported. This is especially promising considering that Amazon Web Services, the market leader, stayed stagnant over that same time frame.

Azure’s gradual rise could have a lot to do with the fact that the technology and its capabilities are advancing to bring unique functionality to users. Microsoft Azure’s new cloud features could set the pace for future solutions and attract more opportunities to its adoption base.

Amplifying government skills

Government entities were empowered to push critical functions to the cloud under President Obama. Organizations can take advantage of a number of critical functions within the cloud, but there are still some initiatives that must be supported. Microsoft Azure’s new features are amplifying government skills in major ways. PowerBi and HDInsight is being rolled out to Azure Government Cloud environments alongside new Microsoft Cognitive Services like facial and voice recognition for U.S. state and federal agencies, Geek Wire reported. These types of tools will be essential for appealing to the growing government cloud market while improving service and intelligence opportunities.

Microsoft Azure's new features could improve government insight.Microsoft Azure’s new features could improve government insight.

With all of the information being generated and collected, organizations must have a means to sort and analyze it all. This is especially important for interpreting unstructured data like facial and voice files. With Microsoft Azure’s newest features on the government cloud, agencies can expect to see more complete reports of trends and emerging behaviors. Insight on this level will help government entities make informed decisions and handle data effectively.

Ensuring backup validity

When a file is deleted or disaster strikes, are you certain that your backups will function appropriately? A number of organizations don’t frequently test their backups, leaving everything to chance when the time comes to restore essential data. Having a corrupted or unusable backup will halt operations and incur heavy compliance fines to fully recover critical systems.

Luckily, a new Azure feature checks for defects within virtual machine backups to give businesses peace of mind. According to eWEEK, contributor Pedro Hernandez, Backup Pre-Checks evaluate VM configurations for issues that might impact backups and provide recommendations to eliminate these problems and ensure successful, consistent backups. Some spotted risks could include an outdated VM agent that might lead to failures down the line. This insight gives organizations the chance to proactively update their systems and avoid potential damages in the long run.

“The Azure Stack brings a host of new capabilities to company cloud environments.”

‘Stacking’ onto Azure opportunities

In early March, Microsoft debuted the third – and final – technical preview of its Azure Stack offering. Azure Stack enables customers to run Azure cloud in on-premise environments with pay-per-usage pricing, capitalizing on hybrid environment interests. The recent preview included new features related to connectivity, security and infrastructure, Market Realist reported. Azure Stack could significantly boost Microsoft’s position in the cloud space by offering a number of economic options to suit a variety of business clients.

The Azure Stack brings a host of new capabilities to company cloud environments. University Herald noted that the features added support for Azure Virtual Machine Scale sets, Azure D-Series VM sizes, Azure consistent templates and functionality improvements for IaaS and SaaS environments.  Lenovo also announced ThinkAgile, a turnkey, rack-scale hybrid cloud offering that will come pre-integrated with Azure Stack. This partnership will provide the convenience of public cloud and the control of on-premise environments alongside a common DevOps approach to hybrid cloud.

Big things are happening for Microsoft Azure, including its new features that could set the pace for future solutions. With better data analysis tools, Azure Stack hybrid functionality and VM backup checks, Azure is gaining steam across the cloud market. To take full advantage of Azure and Microsoft solutions, team up with a managed services provider like iT1 Source. As a Microsoft partner, we are well equipped to integrate and configure solutions to fit your business. To find out more about our partnership with Microsoft and how to take advantage of Azure, contact iT1 Source today.

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