So, you’re thinking about moving to Microsoft Azure. You’ve heard it mentioned and aren’t sure what exactly it is, and how it can help you.

This blog post will share some of the benefits of Azure as it relates to IT planners, how to get thinking about moving your current infrastructure into Azure, and how to deploy new projects into Azure.

What are the benefits of Azure?

Some of the major benefits of Windows Azure revolves around the ability to make and execute a decision without delay. In the past, you would need to plan out your system rollout and order your hardware, wait for weeks for it to arrive, then spend the time to rack, wire, and configure the hardware.

With Azure, you can have your infrastructure online in minutes. You are able to start small, and quickly ramp up the speed of your servers as needed. You can even further enhance your infrastructure by making it redundant in different datacenters across the US, or the world!

Here are the top 3 benefits of moving to Azure

# 1 Pay for the time you use. If you need to do a project with Enterprise SQL and a fast virtual machine, you can pay for the time you use rather than the $30k-50k you would normally have to pay upfront for that same server!

This is especially useful in our changing world. As a business, we must be able to pivot according to changing needs. So, if our business needs to get new infrastructure online for a big project, we want to be able to do it quickly.

Often times, we have a special need that is short term, so having the ability to load up a virtual machine with specialized software, and only pay for the time that it’s needed, can allow you to secure deals and save money at a speed you could not achieve with traditional IT infrastructure.

#2 Quickly move your current infrastructure to Azure. While it seems daunting at first to think of moving your entire IT infrastructure, rest assured it can be done much easier than you might expect, and in small chunks if necessary.

Microsoft Azure Infrastructure

By setting up a site to site connection to Azure, you are able to access resources in Azure as if they were located at your headquarters. This is quick and painless, and allows you to take baby steps towards working with Azure. Often times, companies will start small, setting up the connection to Azure, and then moving forward with a web application in Azure that can connect back to on-premise servers.

This type of site to site connection also allows you to easily take an image of your existing servers and move them to Azure. By taking a Virtual Hard Disk copy (VHD) of your own premise server, you can copy that VHD up to Azure and attach it to a virtual machine. This can be done very quickly, and you can turn your old server off and your new server in Azure on, and with a few tweaks, users can access it as if it were on site!

# 3 Start with new projects in Azure. You have options when starting new projects, you can have your project use Active Directory in Azure and be completely self-contained, or you can link up with your existing Active Directory and have your new project be a part of your existing domain. This process is simple, and can be an easy way to get your company started with deploying to the Cloud.

Many times a development team want to test out a new idea, but don’t want to use their current environment, or they want a new, clean, environment. You can quickly spin up a new web and SQL server, or use the Web App and Azure SQL Database, and have an isolated environment to work with that can be scaled up and down as needed. Azure even has a built-in environment for you to work in! https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/services/devtest-lab/

Ready to make the move to Azure?

Azure has many features that make it attractive to almost any organization. Your ability to easily and quickly spin up new projects, move old infrastructure, and be dynamic in your decision making can give you a powerful tool at your disposal as an IT planner. You gain the ability to react and pivot on demand, and to really be at the leading edge of technology with the Azure Cloud.

Looking to make the move? FMT Consultants is happy to help! As a Microsoft Tier One Certified Cloud Solutions Provider, FMT Consultants is well-positioned to help you transition to Azure, while providing the highest level of services.