What is Azure Stack and Why Do You Need It?



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Whether you are using Azure or not, I am sure you are familiar with the term. The Azure Cloud is the fastest growing cloud computing service out there and is quickly edging out AWS for the market. It is a powerful and expansive service that fully supports hybrid infrastructures for robust data management. You may not know quite as much about Azure Stack, so we wanted to shed some light on this Azure extension.

What is Azure Stack? – This service is an addition to your Azure Cloud network that enables offline operations on your edge computing machines. It allows your on-site users to manage data, perform analyses, and even design queries using little bandwidth. Actions can be performed in an offline environment and then reserved for specific connection windows and deployed to the cloud.

Let’s Talk About Edge Computing – Your network is a complicated series of user APIs and core network processing capabilities. Think of this overall structure as a web of interconnected strings leading back to the central data hub. Edge computing refers to the processes that take place farther away from your centralized network, literally at the edge of your web. We will discuss this in a hybrid scenario where a centralized cloud network is integrated with on-premises hardware. These edge environments may have limited bandwidth or maintain a primarily offline state and it can be taxing to fully manage this data from the cloud.

Using On-Prem as the First Layer of Analysis – Instead of needing to do all analysis in the Azure Cloud, Azure Stack can help segment the workload. It is an extension of Azure that maintains the same user interface and API logic, so it is easy for your users to navigate. You don’t have to worry about relearning the navigation or tools. Azure Stack is installed on your edge machines and managed locally by users at those locations. Be they remote factory locations, temporary work sites, or moving targets, you don’t have to worry about limited connectivity causing issues for the data management. These locations will upload and manage data on their local machines using Azure Stack. They can design code and use tools and APIs just like in Azure. Then the Azure Stack can decide what data to send to your global cloud, and when to send it. This ensures that the local workstations aren’t hamstrung when connection issues surface. Or that areas with expensive bandwidth only use what is absolutely necessary.

Familiar Tools Mean No New Training – The users will feel comfortable with the UI of Azure Stack. It maintains the same layout and functionality, and your extension tools and features are accessible on the Stack as well as the cloud. Your developers can also easily use Azure Stack easily since the APIs are seamless. Code editing in Azure Stack can be automatically be deployed to both Azure and Azure Stack simultaneously, or as an automated event.

Azure Stack may not be for everybody, but if you have a hybrid environment with significant edge computing then Azure Stack could help defray costs and improve your overall network management. It’s worth a second look. Read more about Azure Stack here. Dobler Consulting is a full spectrum database service with 10 years of experiencing helping companies strategize and execute workload management solutions. Dobler Consulting is a Microsoft Gold Partner and can help you plan or execute your database strategies no matter where you are in the process. For more information about how Dobler Consulting can help you manage your hybrid environment, visit www.doblerconsulting.com or call us at +1 (813) 322-3240 (US) /+1 (416) 646-0651 (Canada).