Azure Management services: what's new in October 2020

In October, Microsoft announced a considerable number of news regarding Azure management services. Our community, through these articles that are released on a monthly basis, want to provide an overview of the main news of the month, in order to stay up to date on these arguments and have the necessary references for further information.

The following diagram shows the different areas related to management, which are covered in this series of articles, in order to stay up to date on these topics and to better deploy and maintain applications and resources.

Figure 1 – Management services in Azure overview


Azure Monitor

New version of the agent for Linux systems

This month, a new version of the Log Analytics agent was released for Linux systems, which includes several improvements and ensures greater stability. Among the main changes is support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8, CentOS 8, Ubuntu 20.04 and SLES 15 SP1+, as well as an extension of the features for Azure Arc VMs. Also included is support for Python 3 and a new troubleshooting tool.

Monitor Azure Arc-enabled Kubernetes environments

Azure Monitor for Containers now extends support by contemplating alerts related to metrics of azure arc-enabled kubernetes environments. These metric alerts enable an effective monitor of system resources. To see the list of alerts available for Azure Arc-enabled Kubernetes clusters, please consult this document.

Azure Monitor for containers: Network Policy Manager support (Preview)
It is now possible to monitor the networking of AKS clusters using Network Policy Manager (NPM). In this way Azure monitor for containers will collect the metrics and report any anomalies in the configuration or in the performance of the network.

Azure Monitor for containers: persistent volume monitoring support (PV)

Azure Monitor for containers is now able to monitor the capacity of the persistent volume (PV) connected to the AKS cluster, collecting capacity metrics for all PVs, except for kubesystemnamespace.

Azure Monitor Log Analytics data export (preview)

This feature allows you to continuously export data that resides in certain tables in a Log Analytics workspace to an Azure storage account (every hour) or to Azure Event Hub (almost in real time). When exporting to a storage account, each table is stored in a separate container. Similarly, when you export to event hub, each table is exported to a new event hub instance. There is currently no method for filtering data and limiting the export of only certain events. By adopting this feature you can take advantage of the following benefits:

  • Low cost data retention
  • Easier compliance when data retention is required for an extended period of time
  • Integration with third-party solutions such as Azure Data Lake and Splunk
  • Low-latency export to Event Hub, enabling near real-time monitoring and alerts

Availability in new regions (preview)

Azure Log Analytics is now available in preview in the region of “Brazil Southeast” and “Norway East”. To check the availability of the service in all the Azure regions you can consult this document.


Azure Automation

Availability in a new region

Azure Automation is now available in the “Switzerland North”. To check the availability of the service in all the Azure regions you can consult this document.


Azure Policy

Added support for keys, secrets, and certificates in Azure Policy for Key Vault

Azure Policies for Key Vault allow you to control secrets, keys, and certificates stored in the key vault to ensure that set compliance requirements are met. Any secrets, keys, or certificates that do not meet the requirements will appear as non-compliant in the policy compliance dashboard. Furthermore, you can set deny policies to prevent users from creating or importing objects into the key vault that do not comply with the policies that you set. Compliance results can also be published in Azure Security Center.

Azure Cost Management

Azure Cost Management + Billing updates

During this month, news was announced regarding the following areas of Azure Cost Management and Billing:

Azure Advisor

New recommendations

The following recommendations have been added in Azure Adivisor to improve resource performance:

  • Use the Accelerated Writes feature in your HBase cluster
  • Review Azure Data Explorer table cache-period (policy)
  • Optimize MySQL temporary-table sizing
  • Distribute data in server group to distribute workload among nodes

For further information you can consult this article.

Furthermore, to improve the operation of the Azure environment, the following recommendations have been included:

  • Ensure that at least one host pool is Validation Environment enabled
  • Make sure not too many host pools have Validation Environment enabled
  • Use Traffic Analytics to view insights into traffic patterns across Azure resources

More details are available in this article.


Azure Site Recovery

New Update Rollup

For Azure Site Recovery was released theUpdate Rollup 51 which solves several issues and introduces support for the following Linux distributions: SUSE 15 SP2, RHEL 7.9 e Cent OS 7.9. The related details and the procedure to follow for installation can be found in specific KB.

Evaluation of Azure

To test for free and evaluate the services provided by Azure you can access this page.

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