Progent has helped organizations of all types and sizes to plan, implement, and administer networks that use a range of hybrid architectures that combine Azure cloud infrastructure and services with local datacenters, private clouds, and other public clouds like Amazon AWS. Progent is unmatched in the ability to provide rapid and economical online help from Technology experts to help you to assess the potential advantages of different Azure products and services for your particular business. Progent's virtualization consultants can help you to plan and 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 design backup and restore systems with Azure Backup. In addition, Progent's VPN and firewall experts can show you how to create safe and dependable connections to Microsoft Azure.
About Microsoft Azure
Microsoft Azure, previously branded Windows Azure, is a leading cloud platform that lets you use network infrastructure, servers, and business-critical application software hosted on Microsoft's massive cloud. The Azure ecosystem offers dozens of cloud-based services such as hosting Windows and Linux-powered VMs, scalable cloud storage, messaging, development, and backup/recovery. Azure services are offered on a subscription basis and allocated as-needed, so you can instantly ramp up or reduce compute and storage capacity. Since you pay only for the computer resources you need, efficiency is high, which is one of the major attractions of public clouds.
Popular Azure Cloud Products and Services
Microsoft Azure provides more than 60 IaaS and PaaS options and hundreds of services. This expanding family of integrated cloud services covers virtually all areas of IT including processing, data and storage, networking, administration, security, web hosting, mobility, business applications, and development. Other Microsoft products such as Office 365 Exchange Online rely on Microsoft Azure network infrastructure. (Visit Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online integration and troubleshooting consulting services.)
Key Azure products and services for which Progent provides high-level consulting expertise and technical support include:
Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines makes it easy for you to configure, expand and administer virtual machines on the Azure cloud. Your Azure Storage subscription provides storage for the OS disk and associated data disks. Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines supports Microsoft Windows Server, Linux, IBM, Oracle Database and Oracle WebLogic Server, and additional platforms. Different classes of VMs are offered and priced based on CPU performance, memory and disk size, and I/O latency. You can access Azure VMs through Remote Desktop Connection (RDP). The PaaS features of Azure Virtual Machines allows you to run Windows workloads like SQL Server, Exchange, and Microsoft Dynamics as well as major Linux distributions like Red Hat, CentOS, CoreOS, and RancherOS.
The enhanced deployment model for Azure Virtual Machines, referred to as Azure Resource Manager and introduced in 2014, replaces what is now called Azure Classic and enables more efficient VM management by supporting VM groups with a shared lifecycle. Previously, Azure services for deploying, scaling, and administering virtual machines had to be handled individually. Resource Manager provisioning features include a cloud portal, Azure Resource Manager template, Azure PowerShell, and Visual Studio support. Progent's Azure specialists can help you build and maintain Microsoft Azure environments quickly and economically by providing expertise with all these technologies for supporting Azure Virtual Machines.
Microsoft Azure Storage delivers on-demand scale and automatic load balancing for primary storage on Azure. An Azure General Purpose Storage account gives Azure clients the use of storage services for Blobs, Tables, Files, Queues, and virtual machine disks. Every account includes a 500 terabyte storage maximum. For faster performance, you can subscribe to Azure's Premium storage tier and run virtual machine applications on solid state disks (SSDs).
Azure Blob storage for General Purpose Storage accounts is designed for large volumes of unstructured data like documents, social media, backups, web pages, and system logs. Azure Blobs are arranged as containers, making it easy to designate policies to object groups. To send blobs that are too massive to upload over the Internet, you can mail a physical drive to Microsoft.
A separate category of Blob Storage is available for apps that only require block or append blob storage. You can designate frequently used or infrequently used access characteristics for block and append blobs (but not for page blobs). Being able to define access patterns in Microsoft Azure Storage allows you to achieve an optimal trade-off between price and speed.
Table storage is low-cost storage designed for developers creating schemaless metadata such as contact books, device information, or web apps. Table Storage supports the OData protocol for querying and supports JSON and XML-based AtomPub formats. Queue storage helps in the creation of messaging applications by handling asynchronous communication between software components across cloud and physical environments. Azure File storage accommodates SMB file shares, which streamlines moving legacy apps to Azure.
Microsoft Azure Active Directory is a cloud-based directory and identity control service that enables password synchronization and single sign-on spanning on-premises and cloud-hosted infrastructure. Microsoft Azure Active Directory (AD) is built into Office 365, Salesforce.com, DropBox, Dynamics 365, and many other popular apps. Features include multi-factor identification, endpoint registration, password synchronization across cloud and local environments, group management, role-based access management, application usage monitoring, security monitoring and reporting, and alerts. Azure AD integrates seamlessly with Windows Server Active Directory to make it simple to combine on-premises and cloud-based authentication. Azure provides high availability by locating your directories on a minimum of three separate datacenters.
Microsoft Azure AD enables single sign-on and self-service passwords to access cloud and local resources
The Microsoft Azure AD Connect utility has replaced Windows Azure Active Directory Sync (DirSync), Azure AD Sync and Forefront Identity Manager as the preferred means to integrate on-premises directories and synchronize identity information with Active Directory, Office 365 and SaaS cloud applications.
Azure Backup is an automated backup service for offsite backup of on-premises, cloud-resident, and hybrid data. Three backups are kept in the same Azure datacenter, and three extra copies of target data can optionally be housed at a geographically separate Azure site. Microsoft offers Service Level Agreements for 99.9% availability, and archiving in Azure is available for up to 99 years. Backups can be scheduled for daily, monthly, weekly, and yearly periods, and recovery time is faster and less expensive than traditional tape-based solutions. Azure encrypts backups before to being sent over a secure connection to the Azure cloud, and backups are retained in their encrypted state. The encryption key is stored and managed locally for enhanced security compliance. Additional features include throttling to utilize off-peak periods, data compression for enhanced throughput and lower storage requirements, and incremental backups to conserve bandwidth. Azure Import/Export enables you to perform your seed backup on-premises and send a physical drive to the closest Azure facility.
Azure Backup integrates closely with System Center Data Protection Manager to offer in-depth support for Microsoft's key platforms including Exchange, SQL Server, SharePoint, and Hyper-V. Data Protection Manager works transparently with Hyper-V Volume Shadow Copy Services (VSS) to protect virtual machines without interfering with their accessibility. SCDPM also offers platform-specific granular restore capability such as mailbox recovery for Exchange, database-level restore for SQL Server, and Item Level Recovery (ILR) for SharePoint. Azure Backup solutions integrated with SCDPM can be tracked with SCOM to watch over system health, throughput, and efficiency.
How Progent Can Help You with Azure Integration
If you want to move your network to the Azure cloud or create a hybrid environment that integrates local and Azure resources, Progent can help you assess the advantages of the Microsoft Azure line of services vs. competing public clouds or alternative networking strategies like colocation. Progent can assist you with any phase of Azure migration including benefits assessment, system planning, proof of concept, deployment, unified management, performance optimization, software license management, disaster recovery planning, cybersecurity planning, and regulatory compliance validation.
Progent can assist you to decide which of your mission-critical applications are a good fit for Azure and help you make your older applications are cloud ready. Progent offers affordable as-needed support so you can immediately get past occasional technical roadblocks or Progent can deliver comprehensive project management consulting expertise to make sure your Azure integration initiative is completed on schedule and on budget.
For setting up centralized administration of a hybrid cloud network that includes Microsoft Azure services, Progent can provide System Center consulting services including SCDPM expertise, System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) support, System Center Configuration Manager consulting, SCVMM hybrid cloud management expertise, and Microsoft Intune mobile device management consulting.
Cloud-integrated networks need to furnish a safe, easy-to-manage, user-friendly, and reliable way for user to access both local cloud-based resources. Progent has extensive experience deploying VPN tunnels and setting up or troubleshooting firewalls to connect to Azure. Progent can provide fast remote access to Cisco-certified CCIE network integration consultants and to firewall experts certified by top vendors like Symantec, Barracuda, and Check Point to assist you to configure or troubleshoot firewalls for integrating your on-premises network with Azure. Progent also provides mobility support by providing the skills of Apple iPhone and iPad technology experts and Android integration experts to assist you to set up and manage handheld devices that utilize your Azure environment. When you encounter glitches with your Azure solution, Progent has extensive experience teaming with Microsoft's technical engineers to resolve issues with Azure.
Common examples of remote consulting services Progent has provided to businesses to help them create and manage their Azure-connected ecosystems are:
Contact Progent for Azure Cloud Integration Expertise
- Configure and debug IPsec VPN connections forremote connectivity to Microsoft Azure
- Plan or analyze the architecture of hybrid Azure/local environments
- Create VM images for Windows or Linux systems to be located on Microsoft Azure
- Implement Azure AD, Azure AD Connect, and ADFS
- Design and test backup vaults based on Azure Backup
- Set up and troubleshoot virtual hard disks (VHDs) for Azure
- Define and implement security rules
- Fix issues involving IP addresses
- Fix synchronization issues associated with Office 365
- Set up, patch, and troubleshoot firewalls from Cisco, Barracuda, Symantec and other leading vendors
- Configure Cisco AnyConnect technology for remote access to Azure products and services
- Streamline software license control
- Fix issues with certificate management
- Identify and configure centralized management, monitoring and reporting solutions that span hybrid environments
- Set up Configuration Manager to deploy applications
- Install SCVMM on premises and on Microsoft Azure
- Plan and configure hybrid Exchange deployments
- Tune query speed on SQL Server hosted by Microsoft Azure
- Move Citrix XenDesktop to Azure
- Resolve PowerShell issues for uploading modules to Azure
If you are looking for help with any aspect of integrating your network with Microsoft Azure or other public cloud, call Progent at 800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.
Additional Public Cloud Services Supported by Progent
Products and services offered on leading public clouds like Azure are expanding quickly in volume and sophistication. Choosing the right solution can be a challenge. Most large businesses have hybrid networks that use more than one public cloud and also manage on-premises datacenters. Office 365 family of applications, including Exchange Online, depend on the Azure cloud and offer alternatives to Azure's IaaS products. Progent's cloud experts can help you to evaluate the business advantages of the service portfolios of the leading cloud vendors and can show you how to plan, configure, and administer network environments that incorporate a variety of public and private clouds plus physical local facilities.
Other public clouds supported by Progent's experts include:
Microsoft allows you to create transparent hybrid ecosystems that integrate Office 365 Exchange Online and local installations of Exchange. This permits you to have some mailboxes hosted on your on-premises datacenter or private cloud and other mailboxes resident on Office 365. Progent's Microsoft-certified consulting team can assist you with any phase of planning, implementing and debugging your hybrid Office 365/Exchange solution. Progent's Exchange consultants can deliver as-needed support to help you resolve stubborn technical bottlenecks and also offer extensive project management outsourcing or co-sourcing to make sure your hybrid Office 365/Exchange solution is completed on time and on budget. For more information about Progent's online consulting support for hybrid Office 365 and on-premises Exchange environments, go to Office 365 Exchange Online integration with on-premises Exchange.
Progent's certified Office and Office 365 consultants can help companies of any size to incorporate Office desktop and Microsoft Office 365 apps such as Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Microsoft Access, Project and Publisher into a cohesive productivity solution that offers quick return on investment and promotes better business outcomes. Progent can help your company to interface Office or Office 365 applications with one another and with other core Microsoft technologies such as SharePoint, Microsoft Exchange Server and SQL Server running on-premises or hosted in the cloud. Progent's consultants can also help you to fix compatibility issues with different versions of Microsoft Office desktop and offers live online Office and Office 365 training to individuals or teams.
Progent's Amazon Web Services (AWS) planning and integration consultants offer cost-effective online support to assist companies of any size to integrate Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud services including Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) for virtual machine hosting, Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) for scalable low-latency storage, and Amazon Glacier for low-cost archival storage. Progent can help your IT team with every phase of Amazon AWS integration including requirements analysis, preparedness assessment, architectural design and review, testing, deployment, administration, performance tuning, licensing management, backup/restore solutions, and security strategies. Progent can provide advanced expertise with firewall configuration and VPN connections and can show you how to deploy cloud-centric or hybrid ecosystems that efficiently incorporate Amazon AWS services. Progent offers as-needed support or Progent can deliver project management outsourcing to help you move smoothly to the Amazon AWS platform.
Amazon Marketplace Web Service (Amazon MWS) is a collection of APIs that enables Amazon sellers to streamline their operations by automating key sales activities such as listings, orders, shipments, inbound and outbound fulfillment, and reports. By leveraging Amazon's vast online selling environment and automating their sales, vendors can broaden their market, lower their cost of sales, accelerate response time to customers, and add to their profits. Progent's Amazon Marketplace Web Service (Amazon MWS) consultants can collaborate with your development staff and provide programming, workflow integration, project management support, and training so you can shorten development time and get to market quickly.