Azure has been our cloud platform of choice since Palador began. Why Azure rather than other cloud offerings? While both Amazon Web Services and Azure both are good choices and have some complimentary offerings, Azure has always leaned towards Platform as a Service (PaaS) more than the competition. We prefer the Platform as a Service (PaaS) approach over the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) approach since we have less to manage and can focus on the problem at hand.

PaaS Services We Love

  • Azure Web Apps:

    Elastic scale and simple hosting with no need to manage a virtual machine or manage patching.

  • Azure Service Bus:

    Event Driven Architecture, CQRS and Event Source patterns are easier with a real service bus. Service Bus can even push messages to all mobile platforms with Notification Hubs. Loose coupling for the win!

  • Application Insights:

    the solution is useless if you cannot monitor it. Application Insights allows for extremely rich view of what is happening with your application.

  • Application Gateway/Traffic Manager/CDN:

    our world is getting smaller, we now need global scale.

  • Azure Functions and Azure Batch:

    why pay for servers when they are not in use. Let's go server-less!

  • Azure Key Vault:

    who has access to your passwords in production? Security is only as strong as the weakest link.

Polyglot Storage

  • Azure Elastic SQL DB:

    Who says you cannot scale out relational databases?

  • Azure Storage (Tables, Queues, Blobs):

    Simple and flexible storage for files and table data. This only supports basic features, but if you need a simple lookup by partition and key this is very fast and cheap.

  • Azure DocumentDB:

    Global scale document database with many features including document patching, secondary indexes and server side procedures.

  • Azure Service Fabric:

    For years, we have been building stateless architectures to allow for scale. Service Fabric turns this on its head, using stateful Actors to allow near real time performance and scale. This one is a bit more complicated, but if extreme performance/scale is your goal, this is your platform.

  • Redis:

    As a key value store or just for caching, this is fast, simple storage.

  • Azure Data Warehouse:

    Columnar data storage to allow for business insights over very large data sets.

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