Microsoft Ignite 2018: Where Security and Digital Transformation Took Stage Part 2
This year, our experts Dennis Schut and Wouter Reinders were at Microsoft Ignite. Didn’t get to attend the event? Not a problem! In the previous blog, Dennis Schut provided his 3 main takeaways. In this blog, it's Wouter Reiders' turn to discuss his highlights of the event and reveal which announcements he was most excited for.
Windows Server 2019 & Windows Admin Center 1807
Another year, and another landmark release of the Windows Server platform. Windows Server 2019 has been released and the hybrid platform lovers will really dig into the value that is coming with this product update. Between the built-in Windows Subsystem for Linux, some powerful security features and updates, plus a clear readiness for with building hybrid cloud features, this is setting the stage for the inevitable blurring of lines between on-premises and Azure cloud platforms. It’s really about the patterns of usage and how we manage the systems and applications that show how much of a cloud focus is being brought into the platforms.
Windows Server 2019, together, Windows Admin Center will be the main building blocks needed for Microsoft's new vision for the hybrid Microsoft cloud; Windows Server Software Defined or WSSD.
The foundational hypervisor technology of the Microsoft cloud. Divvy up computing resources through virtualization, run multiple Windows or Linux operating systems side-by-side, achieve high availability through clustering, and provide the most secure environment for your tenants or apps with shielded virtual machines on a guarded fabric.
Storage Spaces Direct
Build software-defined storage from locally attached flash and hard drives. Ensure fault tolerance with distributed software resiliency and unlock unprecedented performance with built-in read/write caching and support for the latest NVM Express and persistent memory. Save space with deduplication, compression, and intelligent storage tiering.
Virtualize your network to meet the evolving needs of your apps. Prevent security vulnerabilities from spreading with micro-segmentation, access-control lists, and encrypted networks. Reduce costs with virtual appliances like the software load balancer and software gateway. Speed up your infrastructure with remote direct memory access (RDMA) and a data plane optimized for 40 gigabits per second and beyond.
Windows Admin Center
Manage your hybrid infrastructure with the browser-based Windows Admin Center app. Provision virtual machines and storage, configure networking, monitor health and performance, and install updates with just a few clicks on-premise or in Azure.
Microsoft Wants to Do Away with More Passwords
Among the many security-related announcements that Microsoft made is support for password-less sign-in for Azure Active Directory (AAD) in the Microsoft Authenticator app. Microsoft says that the app eliminates the need for passwords – the number one security liability for enterprises – by combining your phone and fingerprint, face or PIN for a more secure, multi-factor sign-in.
SQL Server 2019 Preview and Azure Database Manage Instance
Microsoft’s traditional database is picking up Big Data capabilities like support for Apache Spark and Hadoop Distributed File System. It also lets you access AI-driven insights from all your data using SQL Server Machine Learning Services and Spark Machine Learning. Enabling customers to ingest, store and analyze vast amounts of data.
Another announcement from the event, Azure SQL Database Manage Instance is now generally available. The tool lets organizations migrate SQL Server workloads to Azure without the need for changing codes. Meant to provide an easy path to the cloud and make Azure more attractive as a destination for all an organization’s data, the tool also offers VNET support and compatibility with the all the SQL Server features.
It offers native VNET support and is compatible with the full SQL Server feature set.
Microsoft’s New Windows Virtual Desktop Lets You Run Windows 10 in the Cloud
Microsoft now lets businesses deploy a virtual Windows 10 desktop in Azure. Until now, virtual Windows 10 desktops were the domain of third-party service providers. Now, Microsoft itself will offer these desktops. The company argues that this is the first time you can get a multiuser virtualized Windows 10 desktop in the cloud. As employees become more mobile and don’t necessarily always work from the same desktop or laptop, this virtualized solution will allow organizations to offer them a full Windows 10 desktop in the cloud, with all the Office apps they know, without the cost of having to provision and manage a physical machine.
A New Managed Azure Disks Offering: Ultra-SSD
Ultra-SSD, a new Managed Azure Disks offering for your most demanding data-intensive workloads, is now available in Azure. Ultra-SSDs can deliver unprecedented and extremely scalable performance with sub-millisecond latency. You can choose a disk size from 4 GB up to 64 TB and achieve the optimal performance you need per disk even at low storage capacities with the option to scale performance up to 160,000* IOPS and 2 GB/s per disk with zero downtime.
Microsoft Threat Protection
Microsoft revealed that it's bringing Office, Azure and Windows threat protection solutions together into a single integrated offering in Microsoft 365. Microsoft Threat Protection will serve as a comprehensive, end-to-end offering for detecting threats and remediating their impacts.
Microsoft Secure Score
Launched in April, Microsoft's Secure Score serves as a cybersecurity report card for enterprises. Microsoft announced that Secure Score will now include a broader set of controls from Microsoft Cloud App Security, Azure Active Directory and Azure Security Center. The move brings all of Microsoft 365 to the Secure Score platform, and ultimately will "harden defenses even more to protect networks and information, secure against threats, and assist in overall systems management".
Windows Server 2008 and SQL 2008 – Extended security updates after end of support
Microsoft revealed that if you would migrate your Windows Server 2008 and/or SQL 2008 workloads to Azure you will get three years of extra security updates even after regular support has ended. This will be a great solution for customers that are still running legacy workloads on Server/SQL 2008 and are unable to move these to Server 2016/2019 or SQL 2017/2019.
Of course, Microsoft makes many announcements, and we understand that situations differ for every customer. Since it is our goal to help you find solutions and make cloud technology work for you, we are happy to answer your questions or give advice - just contact us!