The Linux-Azure Relationship

October 4, 2018 New Signature

Microsoft Azure is wonderful for Windows, with numerous links built within Windows to ensure Windows and Azure work with each other.  Companies enjoy the integration between Windows and Azure, with every Azure service being compatible with Windows.  But most companies do not use Windows exclusively, with Linux being a key component within the data center.  The good news is that Linux is a first-class citizen in Azure and enjoys the same features in Azure, with Linux running over half the virtual machines in Azure, not Windows, a 10 percent increase since last year.

Azure supports most of the popular distributions, including Red Hat, Debian, SUSE Linux, Oracle Linux, CentOS, and others, with the drivers already included in the kernel.  So even if you do not use the Azure Marketplace images, your Linux system will still work.

When you have a Linux virtual machine in Azure, it can use Azure AD for logins, which gives a unified authentication system that both Windows and Linux can enjoy.  For Linux this includes Azure multi-factor authentication (MFA) without the need to install an RDP gateway, which you can’t do with Windows.

Azure’s Just-in-Time virtual machine access is also tuned to Linux, with SSH access being controlled be default.  Azure Policies and Security Center can report on Linux virtual machines the same way they can with Windows, which gives a unified way to check for compliance on both Azure settings and settings within the VM.

As for Azure services, they are all compatible with Linux.  You can run Web Apps, Containers, Azure Functions, and other services on Linux, so you do not need to touch a Windows box.  Add to this all the services like the Software Defined Network (SDN) and Hadoop, which are running natively on Linux machines.

And to top it all off, the normal open source tools you need are available for you.  MySQL and PostgresSQL are both available as PaaS solutions, as well as Apache Spark, Docker, and other Linux native solutions.

So, when it comes to migrating to Azure, either using IaaS or PaaS, you can depend on Azure to make the migration as smooth and as seamless as possible. If you have questions regarding your data center needs, reach out to a New Signature expert today.

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