Lab Services

Azure Lab Services is a service that enables you to easily set up and provide on-demand access to various systems and software for any workload: teaching a class, setting up a development or test environment, or running trials with customers. Manage and scale your group’s resources in lab environments, while minimizing waste and controlling cost. Choose between the two lab types, classroom lab or devtest lab, for an experience that is tailored to your scenario.

Visit the Azure Lab Services page to learn more.

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  1. Make Azure Backup targets available for dev lab templates

    One of our most popular requirements for lab environments is the cloning of VM's from a production environment into a segregated self service lab environment. Dev Labs seems to be a good contender for this but the admin steps to convert a production Azure VM into a Dev Labs VM is a little awkward currently.

    Each night I backup my production VMs with the Azure Backup service, it would be great if these backed up VM's can be used as template images within dev-labs.

    Currently to achieve this I would have to restore the VM's to a staging VNET/Storage Account,…

    11 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  2. Enable artifacts to provide link to documentation

    There is a need for artifacts to provide links to documentation to simplify artifact use.

    Several artifacts require you to input information that might not be immediately known at first glance, such as what exact string is required for software packages, or the formatting of a certain field.

    If the artifact creator could provide a link to where the user can find additional information on how to use the artifact then it would lower the learning threshold and speed up first time use of DevTest Labs.

    10 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  3. 9 votes
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    planned  ·  0 comments  ·  Classroom Labs  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  4. Switch premium storage to standard storage when machines are off by schedule

    We have lots of lab machines with multiple terabytes of storage. These machines run 12 hours a day. While they are off (deallocated) can we switch the disk to standard instead of premium?

    These would significantly reduce our costs for the machines that are on schedule. Premium disk on an off machine does not provide much value.

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/convert-disk-storage implies that we should be able to convert between disk types.

    9 votes
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    under review  ·  1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  5. ServiceNow Integration

    Integrate DevTest Labs with ServiceNow to facilitate requesting a lab and lab resources without exposing the Azure Portal to end users. Currently all features are exposed on the Azure Portal instead of only the features available for the lab user. Prefer to not expose the Azure Portal to end users.

    9 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  6. Set shutdown multiple times during a day

    I would like to schedule shutdown and start-up multiple times a day. Ideally I want a shutdown at 12:01 PM, 5:00 PM, 10:00 PM, 12:00 AM, 2:00 AM, and 4:00 AM. I don't want the servers running unless it is being used.

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

    Thanks for submitting the idea! Could you please help us to understand why you need auto-shutdown to be triggered so many times during a day? If someone needs to use the VM after the scheduled auto-shutdown time, DevTest Labs today allows you to set auto-shutdown notification, which allows users to delay the shutdown for an hour or two (and if so, then they will get another notification with options to delay). Does it work in your case?

  7. Ability to shutdown VMs based on keyboard / mouse in-activity - x minutes after

    Create a policy to shutdown a VM due to inactivity. This needs to be based on keyboard / mouse inactivity. The ability to execute the shutdown based on minutes inactive. Ability to change the minutes on different devtest labs

    9 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  8. Create a Resource Group and then use the portal to add services to the DevTest Lab

    At present VMs are created within the DevTest lab section of the portal. When a new DevTest Lab is created it could just create a Resource Group. Services could then be added via the rest of the portal, outside of DevTest Labs in the usual way. This avoids reinventing the wheel inside DevTest Labs and also provides a higher level of customisation for features such as Virtual Networks.

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

    When a new DevTest Lab is created, it does create a resource group consists of a Lab resource, a storage account and a virtual network. VM creation needs to happen within the Lab though, while it also creates a separate resource group just for the VM. Is it something mentioned here that you want to create VM (as “services”) from the normal VM creation flow in Azure outside of the Lab but the Lab somehow can recognize it, or are you asking for a different thing? If it’s the former, what’s the downside in your opinion that you’d prefer to do that outside of the Lab? I appreciate any clarification. Thanks!

  9. Allow devtestlab resource types in private repo templates

    Currently only non devtest labs resource types are supported in creating resources in environments via private repo based around templates as bases... But we may need a scenario where we create a custom image after the vm is sys prepped in devtest labs and create resources based on that image.

    8 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  10. Enforce autostart to VMs in Labs

    We can configure autostart for VMs globally from the configuration. However we have to enforce it individually. I would like to have an option to enforce it on all VMs (at least), or on a subset (eventually)

    8 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  11. shutdown vms when spending limit is reached in devTest-Environment

    shutdown vms when spending limit is reached in devTest-Environment

    8 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  12. Clone VM when creating a custom VHD image

    When taking a VHD image, have the option to create an exact copy so you don't make your master image unusable when sysprep'd.

    8 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  13. VM startup/shutdown process dependecies

    I would like to have a option to tell VM Lab to start machines in a certain order and wiat before starting another machine in the chain before some other will be up and running. (chaining) same for shutdown process.

    8 votes
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    2 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  14. Allow setting policies per user type

    Currently it appears that the policies are universal - they apply regardless of the user type. It would be helpful to be able to tailor the policies to specific user types - eg Setting the max number of VM's per user for admins to be a higher threshold than max number of VMs per user for regular lab users.

    8 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    Thanks for your feedback, John! Providing more fine-grained policies including this one is currently in our backlog. It’s been prioritized with other user stories in the backlog, so we don’t have an ETA yet.

    For anyone who want to see it sooner, please keep submitting your votes!

  15. Provide actionable error info upon VM create failures

    I created a new DevTestLab, but every time I try to add a VM it fails after a few minutes. The error information given is completely useless to me as a user/admin. There is no indication of what I should do differently.
    Here is what I get from the portal:

    Title

    Error while Creating Lab VM Dc02

    Description

    Lab VM Dc02 Created

    Status

    Error

    Timestamp

    Wed Dec 16 2015 11:35:55 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

    Correlation IDs

    clientNotification-4455291d7f464a5cb5b180ce5738c31f0-27

    Extension Name

    MicrosoftAzureCompute

    Asset Type

    VirtualMachine

    8 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  16. Make template VM directly accessible in Azure portal

    The template VM should be accessible like a regular VM via the Azure Portal. I got into a situation after configuring the firewall where the RDP port was blocked and could no longer access it. Support could not resolve it either. This would alleviate that by allowing normal Azure recovery methods.

    7 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Classroom Labs  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  17. specify week days of server auto-shutdown

    On auto-shutdown page we can specify the time. I would like to specify on which days of the weeks too.

    7 votes
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  18. Add formula property to ARM tempalte

    After generating an ARM template by using the Azure Portal, through the selection of a formula, I find that the ARM template isn't referencing the formula but the list of artifacts instead.
    This means that if my Lab owner changes the formula, the ARM template is obsolete and no longer generated up-to-date lab VMs when the ARM template is used.
    Rather than having a list of artifacts and a property for the custom image, I'd like to reference the formula directly. Hence, it would be the provider's responsibility to create the VM according to the formula, rather than having to…

    7 votes
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  19. Limit the number of RUNNING virtual machines, not total by use

    Now we have "Limit the number of virtual machines" limit and it's a cool, but I would like to have "Limit the number of RUNNING virtual machines" limit rather than in all possible states.

    I don't want to delete VMs, just because I need another one for a next 2-4 hours. Making custom image for that it's overkill.

    7 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  20. Auto Shut Down Notification Should go the user logged in to the server or user using Azure Portal

    Auto Shut Down Notification Should go the user logged in to the server, it would be good to add Pop before couple of minutes in azure portal to notify the user.

    7 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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