Azure Weekly

Azure Weekly Issue 348: 7th November 2021

Welcome to issue 348 of Azure Weekly - an Ignite 2021 special! As ever, a great summary of all things Ignite are covered in the Microsoft Book of News. There are a vast number of announcements. I'm going to take a slightly different approach. There are some great high level vision / positioning posts by senior Microsoft folks, and there are two new services that are worth highlighting. For all the other announcements, they are in organised by the usual categories.

The high level vision posts are: Key foundations for protecting your data with Azure confidential computing by Mark Russinovich, Innovate with cloud-native apps and open source on Azure by Brendan Burns, Powering all your applications from cloud to edge with Azure infrastructure by Erin Chapple, Your hybrid, multicloud, and edge strategy just got better with Azure by Kathleen Mitford, New investments to help you accelerate your Azure migration and modernization journey by Tanuj Bansal and Putting Tools in Your Hands to Improve Developer Productivity by Daniel Carrasco and Alison Yu.

Now onto the two new services! The first is Azure Chaos Studio, a fully managed service which systematically improves resilience with controlled chaos. This another great example of tools the Azure Product Groups use to make the core platform better, being made available to end customers to improve their solution's resilience. I'm really looking forward to testing out some of our apps & services with this tool.

Personally, the only announcement that mattered this week was the unveiling of Azure Container Apps. I've been fortunate to be on the private preview for this service and have been very impressed. Any long time readers will know I'm a huge advocate of serverless (and have delivered a number of large scale solutions using Azure Functions). Functions excels at event processing where cold starts don't really have an impact, but with HTTP based workloads, where the consumer is often a human being, cold starts are really noticeable, especially the compound effect of Functions calling Functions.

One of the Proof of Concepts I ran was to take one of our OpenAPI services which is currently hosted in Functions, and ported that over to Container Apps. Luckily we already added a hosting environment abstraction, so it was really just a case of re-hosting our OpenAPI framework in an Kestrel self-hosted ASP .NET Core app. The whole process took less than 45 minutes. The cold start performance was noticeable lower (700ms) and once "warmed" the responses were in the 115ms range. Many people have asked me via Twitter about why they'd use ACA over other available options, luckily the product group knew this would be a FAQ and have put together some documentation comparing Container Apps with other Azure container options.

My perspective is threefold; 1) many orgs want access to the power of Kubernetes, but aren't capable of the required step change in complexity and management overhead. ACA solves this problem nicely. 2) Many orgs have struggled to find a cost-effective migration path from their legacy on-premise "Windows Services" based architectures into Azure. ACA solves this too. 3) The real value in ACA is that it offers "Dapr as a Service". We've had a managed Service Fabric offerings for a number of years, but if you wanted a production Dapr workload you had to take the burden outlined in 1). Dapr is a fantastic framework (which also joined CNCF as an incubating project this week), and ACA is the perfect environment to host it.

If you want to dig in a little deeper there have been a number of great posts about ACA from the community; Thorsten Hans has been busy test driving the service and has a number of interesting posts: Introduction to Azure Container Apps, How to deploy Azure Container Apps with Bicep, and Traffic split in Azure Container Apps. Geert Baeke also offers his view Taking Azure Container Apps for a spin, as does Sam Cogan: WTH are Azure Container Apps.

As one event finishes, another starts.... remember that the Visual Studio 2022 Launch Event is on the 8th. I'm personally very excited for the Visual Studio 2022 and .NET 6.0 launch - as .NET 6.0 should drastically simplify many of our .NET based projects. Finally, we've published a long in gestation blog post: Flex Your DevSecOps Muscles With Bicep, which includes a FREE Bicep Cheat Sheet. Have a read, download the cheat sheet and please provide us with any feedback so we can improve it!

AI + Machine Learning

Covering: Anomaly detector, Azure Bot Service, Azure Machine Learning, Azure Open Datasets, Bing APIs, Cognitive Services, Computer Vision, Content moderator, Custom vision, Data Science Virtual Machines, Face, Form Recogniser, Immersive Reader, Ink Recogniser, Language Understanding (LUIS), Machine Learning Studio, Microsoft Genomics, ML.NET, Personaliser, Project Cortex, QnA Maker, Speaker Recognition, Speech-to-Text, Speech translation, Text Analytics, Text to Speech , Translator Speech, Translator Text


Covering: Apache Spark for HDInsight, Apache Storm for HDInsight, Azure Analysis Services, Azure Data Explorer, Azure Data Share, Azure Databricks, Azure Stream Analytics, Azure Synapse Analytics, Data Catalog, Data Factory, Data Lake Analytics, Event Hubs, HDInsight, .NET for Apache Spark, R Server for HDInsight, Azure Purview


Covering: Azure CycleCloud, Azure Dedicated Host, Azure Functions, Azure VMware Solution by CloudSimple, Batch, Cloud Services, Linux Virtual Machines, SAP HANA on Azure Large Instances, Service Fabric, Virtual Machines, Virtual Machine Scale Sets


Covering: Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS), Azure Red Hat OpenShift, CNAB, CNCF, Container Instances, Container Registry, Porter, WSL, Web App for Containers


Covering: Azure Cosmos DB, Azure Database for MariaDB, Azure Database for MySQL, Azure Database for PostgreSQL, Azure SQL Database, Azure SQL Database Edge, Azure Cache for Redis, SQL Data Warehouse, SQL Server on virtual machines, SQL Server Stretch Database, Table storage

Developer Tools

Covering: App Configuration, Azure Lab Services, CLIs, Developer tool integrations, SDKs, Visual Studio, Visual Studio Code, Visual Studio Online


Covering: Azure Artifacts, Azure Boards, Azure DevOps, Azure Pipelines, Azure Repos, Azure Test Plans, Azure DevTest Labs, DevOps tool integrations

Internet of Things

Covering: Azure Digital Twins, Azure IoT Central, Azure IoT Edge, Azure IoT Hub, Azure IoT solution accelerators, Azure Maps, Azure Sphere, Azure Time Series Insights, IoT DevKit, WildernessLabs, Windows 10 IoT Core Services


Covering: Microsoft Certifications, Azure Certifications, Microsoft Learning Paths, Certification Pathway Information

Management and Governance

Covering: Automation, Azure Advisor, Azure Backup, Azure Blueprints, Azure Lighthouse, Azure Managed Applications, Azure mobile app, Azure Monitor, Azure Policy, Azure Resource Manager, Azure Service Health, Azure Site Recovery, Cloud Shell, Cost Management, Microsoft Azure portal, Scheduler, Azure Purview


Covering: Azure Media Player, Content Protection, Encoding, Live and On-Demand Streaming, Media Analytics, Media Services, Video Indexer


Covering: Azure Database Migration Service, Azure Migrate, Data Box


Covering: App Service (Mobile), Mobile apps, Notification Hubs, Visual Studio App Centre, Xamarin


Covering: Application Gateway, Azure Bastion, Azure DNS, Azure ExpressRoute, Azure Firewall, Azure Firewall Manager, Azure Front Door, Azure Internet Analyzer, Azure Private Link, Content Delivery Network, Load Balancer, Network Watcher, Traffic Manager, Virtual Network, Virtual WAN, VPN Gateway, Web Application Firewall


Covering: Archive Storage, Avere vFXT for Azure, Azure Data Lake Store, Azure FXT Edge Filer, Azure HPC Cache, Azure NetApp Files, Blob Storage, Disk Storage, File Storage, Managed Disks, Queue Storage, Storage Accounts, Storage Explorer, StorSimple


Covering: API apps, API Management, App Service (Web), Azure Cognitive Search, Azure SignalR Service, Azure Spring Cloud, Web apps

Azure Virtual Desktop

Covering: Azure Virtual Desktop

Azure Weekly Archive

If you would like to read more interesting articles from the Azure ecosystem check out our archive where you will find all of the back issues.

Contribute Content

If you would like to contribute any content to the Azure Weekly newsletter, please email