Microsoft Azure Integration ConsultantsProgent has helped organizations of all sizes to plan, deploy, and manage information networks based on a variety of hybrid architectures that mix Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure and services with physical datacenters, private clouds, and additional public clouds. Progent is unmatched in the ability to provide fast and affordable online access to IT consulting experts to help you to assess the possible benefits of different Azure products and services for your specific business. Progent's virtualization experts can help you to configure virtual machines on Azure Virtual Machines. Progent's certified information security experts can help you unify identity management with Azure Active Directory. Progent's data protection consultants can assist you to plan backup/recovery solutions with Azure Backup. In addition, Progent's VPN and firewall experts can show you how to create secure and reliable connections to Microsoft Azure.

About Microsoft Azure
Microsoft Azure, previously branded Windows Azure, is a popular public cloud service that lets you utilize IT infrastructure, virtual servers, and business-critical application software residing on Microsoft's vast cloud. Microsoft Azure supports over 60 cloud-centric services such as the ability to host Windows and Linux-based VMs, on-demand storage, unified messaging, development, and backup/recovery. Microsoft Azure services are offered by subscription and allocated as-needed, so organizations can immediately ramp up or ratchet down compute and data storage capacity. Because you pay just for the capacity you need, utilization is very high, which is the key of public clouds.

Popular Azure Cloud Products and Services
Azure provides dozens of IaaS and PaaS products and hundreds of services. This growing family of integrated cloud services covers virtually all areas of information technology such as compute, data and storage, network infrastructure, administration, security, web, mobility, applications, and development. Additional popular offerings such as Office 365 Exchange depend Microsoft Azure network infrastructure. (Visit Office 365 Exchange Online consulting and technical support consulting services.)

Major Azure products and services for which Progent provides advanced expertise and technical support include:

Azure Virtual Machines ExpertiseMicrosoft Azure Virtual Machines hosting service allows you to provision, expand and manage virtual machines on Azure. Your Azure Storage account takes care of storage for the operating system disk and associated data disks. Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines supports Microsoft Windows Server, major distributions of Linux, SAP, Oracle Database, and other leading platforms. Various classes of virtual machines (VMs) are offered and priced according to processor power, memory size, and I/O latency. You can access Microsoft Azure VMs via RDP. The PaaS features of Azure Virtual Machines allows organizations to run Windows workloads such as SQL Server, Exchange, and SharePoint as well as major Linux distributions such as Red Hat, CentOS, CoreOS, and RancherOS.

The enhanced deployment model for Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines, branded Azure Resource Manager, supersedes what is now known as Azure Classic and offers streamlined virtual machine management by allowing VM groups with a shared lifecycle. Before, Microsoft Azure services for provisioning, sizing, and administering virtual machines had to be handled one VM at a time. Resource Manager deployment options include a cloud portal, Azure Resource Manager template, Azure PowerShell, and Visual Studio support. Progent's Azure specialists can help you build and maintain Azure solutions efficiently and affordably by providing expertise with all these technologies for supporting Azure Virtual Machines.

Azure Storage ExpertiseAzure Storage delivers on-demand capacity and automatic load balancing for primary storage hosted on Azure. An Azure General Purpose Storage account provides Azure subscribers the use of storage services for Blobs, Tables, Files, Queues, and virtual machine disks. Each account has a 500 TB storage maximum. To get faster throughput, you can subscribe to a Premium storage tier and operate virtual machine applications on solid state disks (SSDs).

Azure Blob storage for General Purpose Storage accounts is intended for large volumes of unstructured object data such as documents, social media, backups, web content, log files and Big Data. Azure Blobs are managed as containers, making it easy to designate security policies to groups of objects. To send blobs that are too massive to move via an Internet connection, you can ship physical media to Microsoft.

A separate class of Blob Storage is available for apps that only require block or append blob storage. You can specify frequently used or infrequently used access characteristics for block and append blobs (but not for page blobs). Being able to classify access characteristics in Azure Storage allows you to establish the right trade-off between price and throughput.

Table storage is economical cloud storage for developers creating schemaless metadata like address books, device information, or web applications. Table Storage works with the OData protocol for querying and allows JSON and XMLd AtomPub formats. Queue storage simplifies the creation of messaging apps by supporting asynchronous exchanges between application components that span cloud and physical systems. Microsoft Azure File storage accommodates SMB shares, which streamlines moving legacy applications to Azure.

Azure Active Directory ExpertiseAzure Active Directory is a cloud-based directory and authentication management service that enables password synchronization and single sign-on spanning local and cloud-hosted environments. Azure Active Directory (AD) is built into Office 365, Salesforce.com, DropBox, Dynamics CRM Online, and many other cloud applications. Features include multi-factor identification, endpoint registration, self-service password synchronization across cloud and on-premises systems, privileged account management, role-based access management, auditing, security monitoring and reporting, and automatic alerts. Azure AD integrates seamlessly with your Windows Server Active Directory to make it easy to combine local and cloud identities. Azure provides advanced reliability by storing your directories on a minimum of three geo-dispersed datacenters.

Azure Active Directory Consultants

Microsoft Azure AD allows single sign-on password management to access cloud and on-premises resources

The Azure AD Connect tool has replaced Windows Azure Active Directory Sync (DirSync), Azure AD Sync and Forefront Identity Manager as the recommended way to integrate local directories and synchronize identity data with AD, Office 365 and SaaS cloud-hosted apps.

Azure Backup ConsultantsAzure Backup is a managed backup service that simplifies offsite backup of local, cloud, and hybrid cloud/local data. Three copies of protected data are stored in a single Azure facility, and three additional backups at additional cost be protected at a geographically separate Azure region. Microsoft offers Service Level Agreements for 99.9% availability, and retention in the Azure cloud can be up to 99 years. Backups can be scheduled for daily, monthly, weekly, and yearly periods, and restoration is quicker and more affordable than traditional tape-based solutions. Backups are encrypted before to transmission across a protected link to Azure, and backups are stored encrypted. The encryption key is stored and managed locally for enhanced compliance. Other features include throttling to take advantage of off-peak hours, data compression to improve performance and lower storage costs, and incremental backups to save bandwidth. Azure Import/Export enables you to perform your seed backup locally and deliver a physical drive to the nearest Azure datacenter.

Azure Backup integrates closely with System Center Data Protection Manager to provide in-depth support for Microsoft's mission-critical platforms like Exchange, SQL Server, SharePoint, and Windows Hyper-V. SCDPM works transparently with Windows Hyper-V Volume Shadow Copy Services to backup virtual machines without interfering with their operation. DPM also offers platform-specific granular restore capability such as mailbox restoration for Exchange, database-level restore for Microsoft SQL Server, and Item Level Recovery for SharePoint Server. Azure Backup environments integrated with SCDPM can be monitored with SCOM to watch over system health, throughput, and efficiency.

How Progent Can Assist You with Azure Environments
If you want to migrate your organization's IT infrastructure to the Azure cloud or create a hybrid ecosystem that combines on-premises and cloud-based components, Progent's consultants can help you assess the benefits of the Azure line of products and services compared to other public cloud platforms or alternative networking strategies such as colocation. Progent can assist your business with any and every stage of Azure migration such as ROI assessment, system planning, proof of concept, deployment, unified management, performance tuning, license control, disaster recovery planning, cybersecurity planning, and compliance analysis.

Progent can help you to decide which of your line-of-business applications are a good fit for Azure and help you make your older apps are cloud compatible. Progent can provide cost-effective as-needed support to help you quickly get past stubborn technical roadblocks or Progent can provide comprehensive project management consulting services to ensure your Microsoft Azure integration initiative is completed on schedule and within your budget.

For setting up centralized administration of a hybrid cloud environment that includes Microsoft Azure services, Progent can provide Microsoft System Center support including SCDPM consulting, System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) support services, System Center Configuration Manager consulting, SCVMM hybrid cloud management consulting, and Microsoft Intune mobility management consulting.

Cloud-integrated networks must provide a secure, easy-to-manage, transparent, and reliable environment for user to access both local cloud-based resources. Progent has a wealth of experience deploying VPN tunnels and implementing or debugging firewalls to connect to Azure services. Progent offers rapid online access to Cisco-certified CCIE infrastructure experts and to firewall experts certified by leading vendors such as Symantec, Barracuda, and WatchGuard to help you to configure or troubleshoot firewalls for integrating your on-premises network with Microsoft Azure. Progent also supports mobile users by providing the help of iPhone and iPad technology experts and Android connectivity experts to assist you to set up and administer handheld devices connected to your Microsoft Azure ecosystem. When you come up against glitches with your Azure solution, Progent has experience teaming with Microsoft's Azure technical personnel to resolve problems with Azure.

Common examples of online consulting services Progent has provided to businesses to create and maintain their Azure-connected information systems include:

  • Configure and troubleshoot IPsec VPN tunnels forsecure access to Microsoft Azure
  • Plan or review the architecture of hybrid Azure/on-premises environments
  • Create Virtual Machine images for Windows or Linux technology to be located on Azure
  • Implement Azure Active Directory, AD Connect, and ADFS
  • Plan and test backup/restore solutions that utilize Azure Backup
  • Set up and debug virtual hard disks for Azure
  • Define and implement policies
  • Fix issues with IP addresses
  • Resolve synchronization issues with Office 365
  • Set up, update, and troubleshoot firewalls from Cisco, Barracuda, Symantec and other providers
  • Configure Cisco AnyConnect technology for accessing Microsoft Azure resources
  • Simplify license control
  • Resolve issues with certificates
  • Identify and configure centralized management, monitoring and reporting platforms across hybrid environments
  • Set up System Center Configuration Manager to deploy applications
  • Install System Center Virtual Machine Manager locally and on Microsoft Azure
  • Design and implement hybrid Exchange deployments
  • Tune query performance on SQL Server hosted by Microsoft Azure
  • Move Citrix XenDesktop to Azure
  • troubleshoot PowerShell issues for loading modules to Azure
Contact Progent for Cloud Integration Expertise
If you need help with any aspect of integrating your IT network with Azure or other public cloud, call Progent at 800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.

Additional Public Cloud Services Supported by Progent's Cloud Integration Experts
Products and services available on public clouds are growing rapidly in volume and sophistication. Choosing the right options is increasingly difficult. The majority of large businesses maintain hybrid networks that use more than one public cloud and at the same time manage corporate datacenters. Microsoft's Office 365 family of applications, such as Exchange Online, depend on Azure infrastructure and offer alternative paths to Azure's Infrastructure-as-a-Service options. Progent can help you to evaluate the potential advantages of the services offered by. many options available from the major cloud vendors and can help you design, configure, and administer IT ecosystems that include a variety of public and private clouds along with on-premises datacenters.

Additional public clouds supported by Progent include:

Office 365 Integration with On-premises ExchangeMicrosoft allows you to create transparent hybrid ecosystems that combine Office 365 and local Exchange deployments. This allows you to have specific Exchange mailboxes hosted at your corporate datacenter or private cloud and other mailboxes resident on Office 365. Progent's Microsoft-certified Exchange consulting team can help you with any facet of designing, implementing and debugging your hybrid Office 365 network. Progent's Exchange consultants can deliver occasional expertise to help you through stubborn technical bottlenecks and also can provide comprehensive project management outsourcing to make sure your hybrid Office 365/Exchange solution is carried out on schedule and on budget. For more information about Progent's online consulting support for hybrid Office 365 and on-premises Exchange systems, go to Exchange Online integration solutions with on-premises Exchange.

Office 365 Integration ConsultantsProgent's certified Microsoft Office and Office 365 experts can assist companies of any size to integrate Microsoft Office desktop and Office 365 applications such as Office Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Access, Project and OneNote into a cohesive productivity solution that offers quick return on investment and enables better business results. Progent can help your company to integrate Office or Office 365 applications with each other and with additional core Microsoft platforms such as SharePoint Server, Microsoft Exchange Server and Microsoft SQL Server deployed on-premises or in the cloud. Progent's consultants can also help you to resolve compatibility problems with different versions of Microsoft Office desktop and can provide live online Office and Office 365 training to individual users and teams.

Amazon AWS Configuration ConsultingProgent's Amazon AWS integration consultants can provide affordable remote consulting to assist businesses of any size to integrate Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud services including Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) for virtual machine hosting, Amazon S3 for scalable low-latency storage, and Amazon Glacier for low-cost long-term archiving. Progent can assist your IT team with every phase of Amazon AWS migration and troubleshooting including requirements analysis, preparedness evaluation, system design, pilot testing, configuration, administration, performance tuning, licensing management, backup/restore mechanisms, and security and compliance. Progent can provide advanced expertise with firewalls and VPN connections and can help you create cloud-centric or hybrid environments that seamlessly integrate Amazon AWS resources. Progent can provide as-needed support or Progent can provide project management outsourcing services to help you migrate efficiently to the Amazon AWS cloud platform.

Amazon MWS Integration ExpertsAmazon Marketplace Web Service is a library of APIs that allows Amazon sellers to improve the efficiency of their business processes by automating key sales activities including listings, orders, payments, fulfillment, and reports. By tapping into Amazon's extensive online ecosystem and automating their sales, vendors can expand their market, lower their cost of sales, accelerate response time to customers, and increase their profits. Progent's Amazon Marketplace Web Service (Amazon MWS) developers can collaborate with your development team and provide programming, workflow integration, project management support, and training to help you cut development time and expedite your ROI.

Google Cloud Platform Integration ConsultingProgent's Google Cloud Platform integration experts offer affordable online and onsite consulting to help businesses to migrate all or part of their core network resources to Google Cloud Platform services. This can save time and hardware expense and allow access to Google's state-of-the-art machine learning technology. Progent can help your IT team with every aspect of Google Cloud Platform integration including requirements analysis, preparedness assessment, architectural design, pilot testing, deployment, centralized administration, performance optimization, software license management, backup/restore solutions, and security strategies.

More topics of interest: