No, you are not dreaming, and yes, it works: using the latest version of the PHP SDK for Windows Azure, you can use the command-line tools (and the API, for that matter) on Linux! Here’s how.

You may first need to install PHP proper on your machine; here’s how to do it on Ubuntu:

sudo apt-get install php5

Now, you should go to the Windows Azure PHP SDK home page on CodePlex and click on “View all downloads”, or just go to the all downloads page directly. Download the latest ZIP file for the SDK and extract it on your machine. At the time of writing, you should download version 4.0.5 or more, which includes ready-to-use scripts for Linux!

You will find a number of shell scripts in the “bin” subdirectory. You just need to make them executable :

chmod +x *.sh

Here is a list of the scripts included in the SDK:

$ ls -l *.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 376 2011-11-24 08:36 certificate.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 375 2011-11-24 08:36 deployment.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 389 2011-11-24 08:36 getasynchronousoperation.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 375 2011-11-24 08:36 scaffolder.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 372 2011-11-24 08:36 service.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 369 2011-11-24 08:36 sqlazure.sh
-rwxrwxr-x 1 tomconte tomconte 372 2011-11-24 08:36 storage.sh

These scripts will allow you to automate the platform without having to use the portal, using the Windows Azure management API.