This weeks Azure News, probably the biggest and most popular Azure News is the fact that Azure is ditching Azure RemoteApp.
Don’t forget, Azure news can also be heard on the ‘Need to Know‘ podcast with Robert Crane and myself.
RemoteApp being replaced by Citrix XenApp Express
Currently Azure RemoteApp is 2 years old and Microsoft will stop offering RemoteApp services on October 1, 2016 and then turn off the service completely at the end of August 2017. The replacement being Citrix XenApp Express which is currently under development.
XenApp “Express” will be the new Azure “RemoteApp v2.0”.
Citrix will release a Tech Preview of the new XenApp “Express” service in Q4 2016.
New N-Series of virtual machines in Azure preview
New N-Series of virtual machines have been announced for preview at the same time as the RemoteApp & Citrix announcement. The new N series offer industry leading multimedia experiences as a result of a partnership between Microsoft and NVIDIA.
There are two families of N series virtual machines, the NV series and the NC series.
The NV series focuses on visulisation with NVIDIA Tesla M60 GPUs and NVIDIA GRID. NVIDIA GRID is the industry’s most advanced technology for sharing true virtual GPU hardware acceleration between multiple users without compromising the graphics experience. Features and experience are exactly the same as they would be on a physical device. The Tesla M60 cards retail for about $7,500.00 AU each. For this technology you should be able to visualise graphic-intensive workflows to get superior graphics capability and run single precision workloads such as encoding and rendering.
The NC series of virtual machines are compute-focused GPUs running Tesla K80 GPUs – the fastest GPU available in the public cloud. You can run compute intensive high performance workloads using CUDA or OpenCL. CUDA is an API developed by NVIDIA that allows software developers and software engineers to use a CUDA-enabled graphics processing unit directly through a software layer. The Tesla K80 card sell for about $8,500.00 AU each.
The other part to this news is the fact that Teradici has been testing their PCoIP technology on these N series of virtual machines, you’ll be able to run applications like AutoCAD or Adobe Premier Pro and watch high definition videos over the WAN.
The preview for the N-Series will start in Azure’s South Central region initially and will expand to additional regions in the next couple of months.
New Azure SQL plan
Azure have released a new plan called P15, which has a whopping 4000 DTUs and 1TB of storage. This is now the biggest plan which takes the lead in front of the previous biggest which had 1750 DTUs. In case you don’t know what DTUs are, DTUs are based on a blended measure of CPU, memory, reads, and writes.
New Azure Regions Announced
As well as two regions in the UK and two regions in Germany, two new Azure regions are announced for South Korea with one of them being based in Seoul. South Korea is ranked number 1 globablly for having the fastest internet speeds in the world. I think its a good move on Microsoft’s behalf, not only does AWS have a presense in South Korea, but it’s also good for local businesses in South Korea as one of the main road blocks to move to the public cloud is internet capacity issues. My gut feel is that Azure will do very well and be very popular with local businesses.