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developer stuff by Joe Healy

Easy Blog with BlogEngine.NET, Azure Web Apps and Azure Gallery Video

Azure plus Web Apps plus the Azure Marketplace offer an easy route to spin up solutions quickly and efficiently in the cloud. The provisioning process takes care of Web App initialization, databases, resource groups and more.

For one of my engagements I was asked to come up ways to spin up online properties like blogs with little or no code. Accordingly, I've recorded a video of provisioning BlogEngine.NET into a Web App in Azure. BlogEngine is an easy to work with, CS;harp driven, blogging platform.

Watch the video below for a walk through using a Stop and Go tutorial format. After completing the video tutorial you will have stood up a complete blog in the cloud with no code and no database required.  And you'll have a publicly addressable URL to share your thoughts.

DreamSpark and the Azure Benefit - Stop and Go Tutorial for Activating

We've got a great offering to get software and services into the hands of startups called DreamSpark. Unfortunately, activating some things, like the Azure benefit, can be a bit awkward. So I've put together a step-by-step walk through on my MSDN blog to help people out. My guide walks a student through activating a DreamSpark account and provisioning up a Web App using the Azure benefit. Surf over to it and check it out.

Blog article -

Video Link

Enjoy, and let me know what you think!

Getting an Azure Account - Six Different Ways

There are quite a number of folks using Azure out there. If you are just starting out with Azure there are a number of routes to getting started with it. As of this post in August 2015 I've identified no less than six different ways for you to get going with Azure for your cloud computing scenarios. If I find more I'll update this article. After reading this you'll have a good idea of ways to get going on Azure and how to proceed.


Azure Pay-As-You-Go is the base Azure offer. Pay for what you use on a monthly basis. Enter a credit card and away you go. You can also get pre-approved for invoicing if you're an Enterprise Account. No limitations. More information at .  Note you can add Azure Pay-As-You-Go to an existing account by heading to the Azure Account Management Center at .


Work for a large corporation? Have they purchased some blocks of Azure for use? Talk to your software folks and find out if you can use Azure via your coporation's Enterprise Subscription. What is an Enterprise Subscription? If you're a big corporation using large amounts of cloud computing, you're most likely not going to use a credit card to pay for your consumption. Customers may purchase Azure through Enteprirse Agreements. Customers add Azure upfront to their EA and the spend is consumed over the year. A sepecial Enterprise Portal for managing user an allocating resources to employees is provided. No limits on usage. Must be purchased from a Microsoft Account Rep or Reseller. More information at .  Information on purchasing from a Microsoft Reseller can be found here - .


Want to play and explore with Azure but don't want a committment? Try a 30 day Azure Trial subscription. Thirty days or $200 worth of Azure to use, whatever comes first.  Account is by default capped so you cannot accidentally spend over your $200 allocation.  To sign up a free trial go to  .


Do you have an MSDN subscription? Did you know you have up to $150/month Azure credit you can use? Head over to the "My Account" tab on your MSDN subscription and activate your Microsoft Azure benefit. The next time you go to the Azure Portal you should see up to a $150/month credit available. Details on the offer are here - . MSDN subscribers can also get up to a 40% discount on pay-as-you-go-rates ( ).


Software based tech startup? Less than 5 years old? Privately held? Earning less than $1m annually? You're eligible for Microsoft Bizspark, our program for startups. Essentially Bizspark gets you the MSDN Subscription for up to five of your developers gratis for three years. With this you get up to five subscriptions for Visual Studio Ultimate + MSDN. This amounts to $150/month per developer. You get a number of other benefits such as operational software licenses and more. Qualify? Apply at .


If you're a student, we have a special setup for you. You can get DreamSpark, which gives you access to range of software benefits. The Azure Dreamspark benefit for students gets you up to ten Azure Web Apps ( formerly Web Sites ) without requiring a credit card.  Web Apps support html, js, node, php, phython and more.  This is a great way for students to have hosted projects off their local box to showcase.


There are many different ways to get going, suitable to a number of different scenarios. Give Azure a try. Love to hear how it goes.