At PDC 2010 we announced the availability of Azure Connect (formerly Project Sydney) which is a part of Azure Virtual Network. This feature allows a easy way of migrating complex application over to Azure.
Azure connect aims at providing a easy but secured way to link your on-premise machines to the roles hosted in Azure so they communicate among themselves with much ease. So no more Service Bus and ACS.
You can now sign up for the Windows Azure Connect CTP via the Windows Azure Management portal.
* All relays for Windows Azure Connect during the CTP are located outside of Windows Azure Data Centers, thus network traffic between Windows Azure roles and Connect relays will be charged as normal Windows Azure bandwidth usage.
So what does Azure Connect exactly do? Its an easy mechanism to setup IP-based network connectivity between on-premises and Windows Azure resources. This enables direct IP-based network connectivity with you existing on-premises infrastructure.
Some application scenarios for Windows Azure Connect include:
Most of these were earlier implemented using Azure AppFabric Service Bus. So its even more important to understand how they are different and when to use what. First thing to keep in mind is that they do not compete instead, they go hand in hand. Here is however a chart of technical specifications of both of these:
An application service running on the cloud.
Service Bus, Access Control, Caching
• Azure roles connect to local database server.
• Azure roles use local shared files, folders and printers, etc.
• Azure roles join the local AD.
• Expose the local service to Internet.
• Move the authorization process to the cloud.
• Integrate with existing identities such as Live ID, Google ID, etc. with existing local services.
• Utilize the distributed cache.
Having understood the specifications of the technologies, lets understand when to use these based on the scenarios.
Roadmap of Azure Connect
Please watch this PDC session for an overview of Azure Connect. For all new features available with this release please watch the overview webcast.