Sharon outlines some of the more common Azure application services that can be implemented into your applications. Topics include: Azure Active Directory, Azure App Service, API Management, Redis Cache, and Azure Search.
- [Instructor] Azure is big and offers a variety of services that you can mix and match to provide you with a customized solution. In this chapter, we are going to look at some of the services that you can integrate into your applications. If you have taken any of my previous Azure courses, you may have heard me refer to Azure as a puzzle. When you were designing your application, you can pull in different Azure services that your application can leverage. Let's start off with your awesome application.
Next, you may want to add in Azure Active Directory, and then leverage Azure Service Bus, and finally add in Azure Search. Now, this is where the beauty of Azure comes into play. You can then go ahead and add in Azure Event Hub at a later date or tie in Azure App Service. And as your application continues to grow, then you can add in Stream Analytics or IoT Hub and finally Azure Redis Cache. I have only mentioned a few services here, as Microsoft continually adds services and improves the existing ones.
Let's start exploring some of these services in this chapter, starting off with one of my favorites, Azure Active Directory. If you're new to Azure, then you may be surprised to learn that you're already using Azure Active Directory, as it is the backbone for Office 365 and Dynamic CRM. And of course, Azure Active Directory is a part of Azure itself. There are several benefits to using Azure Active Directory. The first and probably most important is Azure Active Directory provides a secure sign-in and authorization mechanism.
You can control access to your applications via users and groups or using role-based access control. And finally, you can leverage users' profiles, emails, and calendars via Office 365 that you can then tie into your applications. By using Azure Active Directory, you can have single sign-on for a variety of cloud apps, including the over 2,800 SaaS apps that are already available to you in the Gallery. You can also use SSO for your own internal line of business applications.
And when you implement SSO, or single sign-on, you can then get reporting on application usage. Another key component of Azure Active Directory is providing identity management which includes multi-factor authentication, self-service password reset. Yes, your users can reset their own passwords. You don't have to do it for them. Self-service group management, device registration, role-based access control, application usage monitoring, auditing and alerting, security monitoring, and finally, privileged account management.
Let's take a look at an example of integrating Azure Active Directory with a Web app. As we can see here, we have our user. The user will access the Web app. If authentication is required, the user will then have to authenticate with Azure Active Directory. Once authenticated, Azure Active Directory will issue a token back to the user, and then the token is passed to the Web app and the user can now access that app. Next we have the Azure App Service which includes hosting of Web apps, mobile apps which are used for hosting mobile backends, logic apps that are used for automating business processes and integrating systems without you having to write any code, and finally, API apps which are used for hosting restful APIs.
The key features of Azure Web apps include support for multiple languages and frameworks. Azure apps are globally scalable and highly available. And they'll also integrate with other SaaS platforms in addition to integrating with your on-premise data. And finally, there are dedicated Visual Studio tools that are already available for you to develop your apps with. You can also integrate API management to your application. This will allow you to publish APIs to external, partner, and internal developers, monitor the health of APIs, and they enable throttling to limit the rate and quota of the API.
Next we have the Azure Redis Cache which is a fully-managed cache that stores and retrieves your application data. Your application will become more responsive because Redis Cache has high throughput and low latency and is accessible from any application in Azure. Next we have Azure Search which will allow you to embed search right into your Web and mobile apps. Think about your favorite online retailer. What do you normally do? You usually type what you are searching for in the search bar.
That's where Azure Search comes into play. Azure Search does not require any infrastructure at all as it is search as a service. And the benefits of Azure Search include that it's incredibly powerful, it can scale out easily, and simplifies search index management. By integrating some of these services into your application, you can customize the application for your specific needs.
- Creating compute-intensive applications
- Creating long-running applications
- Implementing messaging systems
- Azure Service Bus relays
- Using Azure Storage queues
- Creating an Azure Event Hub
- Creating Azure WebJobs
- Managing cloud environments with Azure Active Directory Domain Services