Virtual Machines

How can we improve Azure Virtual Machines?

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  1. 3.5GB of RAM is insufficient for moderate workloads

    Despite the best efforts from OSG, Windows Server still consumes a considerable amount of RAM even when stripped-down. Add to that the memory usage by an instance of a local SQL Server (when Azure SQL is inappropriate or too costly) it's easy to hit the 3.5GB memory limit and suffer disk thrashing.

    I would like to see the memory allocations doubled at each instance tier level, though you can retain the CPU core count. If doubling is not economically feasible please extend the "Memory Intensive" range to offer a 2-core, 7GB option ($140/month?).

    Question: why is memory doled out at…

    11 votes
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      3 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • Auto scale

      Introduce Options to Auto Scale based on Memory parameter . Right now the options are limited to CPU and Queue Length . Queue Length would not make sense for a VM.

      10 votes
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        0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Windows Images with different languages

        It would be great to have pre-built Windows images in different languages for testing software on foreign Windows systems.

        10 votes
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          1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • Getting scheduled "VM Maintenance" using Powershell

          Hi Corey,

          It would be nice if customers could read scheduled maintenance using either Powershell or just a basic REST call. This will bring flexibility and create integration with servicec management systems for notification.

          9 votes
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            0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • virtual machines column showing user that created

            when you create a virtual machine and then revisit mgmt. portal view you have no idea who created that virtual machine, and on what date.

            for team shared azure subscriptions this is really important as users don't want to have to bury this kind of information into virtual machine names.

            we need it so we can track down who has an a8/a9 virtual machine that's been left running for the past week, or who has a stuck one that needs to be deleted.

            we also need the last started/stopped date column view so we can determine if something basically hasn't…

            9 votes
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              1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

              Once we have more AAD integration into the creation and management of VMs, this will be possible. Stay tuned as we dig in here.

            • Create SQL Cluster VMs

              I went to test SQL High Availability or Always On, it is too complicated to setup all. If there is a Wizard which will straight install SQL cluster up and running with multiple VMs sharing same storage and datacenter would be helpful.

              If there are pre configured services like,

              1. SQL Cluster (number of nodes)
              2. SQL Replicated VMs, First Primary, Second Merge Replicator or whatever. We can choose number of replicators.
              3. Setup two VMs or more with Mirroring, Replication, Logshipping etc, all configured once and up and running.
              4. Auto log backup SQL to Azure Storage every 15…

              9 votes
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                1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Need much better upload speed

                A deal breaker seems to be slow upload speed of large data (ca. <200 kB/s from Finland). Our application requires bulk transfer of large (100s GBs) data sets. Our Internet connections normally to most sites report 1000-1500 kB/s speeds).
                Import/Export device service doesn't seem to be available in Europe and seems to be a laborius option.

                9 votes
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                  3 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • Provide Azure License Server as a Service

                  Most Azure VMs have the Windows license built into the pricing model which is great as we don't have to worry about licensing.

                  However when it comes to Remote Desktop Services VMs we need to provide our own CALs for each of the users that will connect to the server. This is a major pain point as the CALs are time consuming to obtain and a hassle to keep track of.

                  It would simplify things greatly if Microsoft could provide user licensing as a service on Azure, and allow us to manage the licenses through the portal.

                  Then it would…

                  8 votes
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                    1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • Azure Website with GPU accelerated hardware (i.e. Tesla Series with CUDA)

                    I have website with CUDA rendering that uses Nvidia Tesla with TCC mode that can use CUDA device in Windows service. Please add such VM image for Azure?

                    8 votes
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                      under review  ·  0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Yes, Need to know when a virtual machine reboots.

                      There needs to be an email sent when a VM is rebooted. You can do that now if the processor on the VM goes above a certain threshold.

                      8 votes
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                        1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        planned  ·  Corey Sanders [MSFT] responded

                        We do plan to add support to indicate when a VM has rebooted in the operation logs. We will investigate whether to also add support for emailing in this situation but i like the idea.

                      • Autogrow for VMs

                        Looks like there is work under progress to explore live migration / low downtime migration of VMs to reduce the down time during maintenance windows. Will be wonderful to build on it and make in place scale up / Down of a stand alone VM based on performance thresholds possible. Scaling out dosent foot the bill for all scenarios as it really requires SQL always on or ILB on top of it for the app to leverage elasticity in its current form.

                        8 votes
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                          2 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Make Windows Azure Powershell CmdLets available by Default

                          The Windows Azure Powershell Commandlets are very powerful and would be a welcome addition to the Guest OS.

                          8 votes
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                            1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • Encrypting Windows VMs - Add the ability to set a drive letter for the bek volume

                            When encrypting a Windows VM, one does not have the ability to set a drive for the bek volume. Currently the next drive letter available is what is used. This is not an optimal scenario if you have drive standards that must be adhered to.

                            7 votes
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                              0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Automated backup for VMs running SQL Server 2014

                              The max retention range for configuring backups on Azure VMs running SQL Server seems to be 30 days. https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/azure/Dn906091.aspx

                              Could we have options to increase the retention period? This will make it a good archival solution.

                              7 votes
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                                0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • ADFS HA Template

                                One of the scenarios for Office 365 SSO is to deploy all of the SSO components in Azure: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn509537.aspx

                                "Scenario 2: All Office 365 SSO integration components deployed in Azure. This is the new, cloud-only approach; you deploy directory synchronization and AD FS in Azure. This eliminates the need to deploy on-premises servers."

                                If technically possible, it would be great to have instructions to setup site to site VPN, documentation which already exists, and then provision highly available ADFS servers via template.

                                I think medium sized customers with on-premise AD desiring SSO would find this attractive.

                                7 votes
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                                  2 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Monitor VM Disks - Online/Offline

                                  I have come across multiple scenarios while troubleshooting where the Disks went offline and Infra team not aware until its been informed by a user.

                                  It would be better to have monitoring Disks were Online/Offline via Azure Portal

                                  6 votes
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                                    0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • Cluster Network Communication for Cluster Aware Updating

                                    As you know, Zero Downtime and small maintenance windows don't often come together well.

                                    We would like to leverage Cluster Aware Updating to patch our HA clusters. The problem is that the Cluster Network does not allow communication.

                                    We would like to see the network traffic enabled for the Cluster IP so that we may let automation safely patch and fail over.

                                    6 votes
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                                      1 comment  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • Windows VM ability to auto-execute customdata

                                      When you pass custom data to a windows virtual machine it gets dropped into a file, but there is no way to have it automatically execute. Linux VMs have this functionality through the linux agent and cloud init. It would be convenient to pass a DSC script or custom startup script through custom data without having to use the CustomScript or DSC extension (because then you don't have to deal with copying files to a storage account or generating SAS tokens).

                                      6 votes
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                                        0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • Provide an hours notice for any Underlying Host reboot that isn't Automatic/service healing

                                        For any underlying host reboots that happens on Azure there are always reboots that Azure can give prior notice about, it could be a hotfix you are applying to your host or you found an issue with the host and you need to reboot. If you gave us an hours notice instead of just rebooting hosts and in-turn VMs as and when you want, then we could have ramped up to 3 or more VMs to ensure we retained the high availability. The small increase in cost for this we are prepared for. We are not prepared for random (to…

                                        6 votes
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                                          3 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • create an IaaS VM - D1s v3 (1CPU, 4GB) spec

                                          The equivalent spec is a last generation DS1 v2 (1 CPU 3.5GB)
                                          The latest v3 generation should be D1s v3 (1 CPU, 4GB)

                                          5 votes
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                                            0 comments  ·  Windows  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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