Thursday, December 08, 2011

London Windows Azure User Group LWAUG - first meeting update

LWAUG - what a mouthful! As mentioned in an earlier post, I attended the LWAUG first meeting on Tuesday night in London. I thoroughly enjoyed it and learned a lot from it. I also found it particularly useful talking to various folks during breaks and after the talks - as I do with most user groups, engaging with members and exchanging experiences/knowledge is one of the reasons I attend.

Sadly though, I could only stay for Richard Conway's talk on Service Management API's in Windows Azure. Service Management API's allow you to programmatically create and deploy services into Azure. I missed Andy Cross's talk on diagnostics as I had to get back to Norfolk, I didn't get home until 00:30am. Andy's slides can be obtained here: (note the use of Azure blob storage to store the files!).

I am told some of the service management API's as demoed by Richard are undocumented. Everything talks via REST in Azure, sorry SOAP folks, nothing to see! REST is removing all the fluff you get with SOAP. SOAP just doesn't scale when you're trying to consume services over constrained low-bandwidth networks such as EDGE and GPRS. As we have a ever so increasing breadth of varied connected devices, i.e. net books, smart phones, laptops, PDAs, tablets etc this is a very big deal. So I'm glad the Microsoft Azure architects stuck with REST in Azure. Anyway, I think this is a big subject and one we could discuss at a future LWAUG event(s).

See here for documentation around Service Management REST API's in Azure: it seems fairly extensive, those messages can easily be sent via Fiddler so you don't need to write anything to play around with the API.

You can download Richards slides here: (again from blob storage)

Also Richard has uploaded his code used in his demo's here: definitely worth looking at if you want to auto-deploy your Windows Azure services into Azure Compute via mechanisms like continuous deployment for seamless integration for your testers and developers.

I'm looking forward to the next meet.

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