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How to use Windows Azure IaaS for hosting BizTalk Server environment – Part 2: Azure Networking

Written by Craig Butler on January 18, 2013

 

As we discussed in our previous post, we are working on setting up a BizTalk Server environment on Windows Azure IaaS.  If you missed the overview, you can find it here.  Now it’s time to jump into the details of Windows Azure, the network configuration.

Setting Up Your Azure IAAS – Step 1 – Create your cloud service

In order to define anything inside of Windows Azure, you will need to create a cloud service in Windows Azure.  In Azure, the cloud service will act as the container for the cloud services that you consume.  One of the constraints for working with multiple, networked VMs in Azure is they need to all be in the same cloud service.  To create a cloud service, open a Browser and navigate to the Windows Azure Management portal.

Once you are authenticated and in the portal, click on New, then select Compute –> Cloud Service –>Custom Create

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Give you cloud service a unique name and assign it to an affinity group.  The name will be important as this will be the name exposed to the internet and this will be the name you use to connect to your virtual machines.  As for the Region, select a region that is located closes to your geographic location.

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Setting Up Your Azure IAAS – Step 2 – Define Virtual Network

Once your cloud service is created, you next have to create a Virtual Network.  If you have ever configured a multiple VM’s or machines from scratch, you know that you have to be able to connect to each of the machines on its own network and at minimum send ping requests back and forth. Azure is no different but in order to get connectivity between your Azure Virtual Machines, you will need to create a Virtual Network.  Click on New – Networks – Virtual Network – Custom Create

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Give the network a name and set the Affinity Group

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Next, set the IP address configurations.  You can leave the default IP ranges if you are not well versed in the IP addressing schemes.  In addition to the main IP ranges, you have the option of setting up different Subnets.  In my configuration, I have chosen to have two subnets, one for backend/database connectivity and one for front end / UI connectivity

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On the final setup, you will need to setup a DNS server.  This will allow you to navigate to your virtual machine names using the machine name vs. the IP address.  While this is optional, I would highly recommend this in order to make you life much easier.  In addition to your DNS server, you have the option of connecting your virtual network to your corporate firewall.  This will enable you to take advantage of existing domain resources.  Once this is complete, you are now ready to start creating your virtual machines.

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In our next post, we will cover the configuration of the Azure Virtual Machines and work to connect the VM’s to the Virtual Network and connect them to one another.

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