Custom Domains the Easy Way in Azure Web Apps

One of the best things about cloud development today is the low cost of entry. With cloud vendors competing to bring customers to their offerings, there are strong incentives to keep prices low, particularly at the entry level. Microsoft’s Azure offerings are no exception. You can get started with Azure Web Apps, whether for hosting a blog or a more full-featured application, for free, if you’re willing to accept the limitations of the free plan.

One of those limitations is that the free offering for Azure App Service does not support the use of custom domains. So any site or app you host using the free plan must use a subdomain of the azurewebsites.net domain, such as myreallycoolsite.azurewebsites.net. For development and testing, or for hosting an API that will only be called programmatically, this is no big deal. But for public facing sites, you’re going to want a custom domain. Read on to learn how easy Microsoft has made that with Azure Web Apps.

Continue reading Custom Domains the Easy Way in Azure Web Apps

My Site’s Fallen, and it Can’t Get Up!

TL:DR

Short version…some extra traffic crashed my blog last week, thanks to my decision to use cheap shared hosting. In response, I moved my blog to Windows Azure Web Sites, where I can easily scale to meet any traffic spikes. Read on for the background, or skip to “Making the Move” for the technical details.

The Background

Cheap hosting. It lures you in with the siren song of saving lots of money. And for a while, perhaps even a long while, it may give you everything you need. But sooner or later, you find out that you get what you pay for.

Continue reading My Site’s Fallen, and it Can’t Get Up!

Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 7) Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps – Authentication Tips and Tricks

Wrapping up their “Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 apps” series Brian Hitney , Andrew Duthie  and Peter Laudati, as they showoff some useful tips and tricks around authentication for your Windows Azure Mobile Server based apps.

Continue reading Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 7) Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps – Authentication Tips and Tricks

Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Authentication Tips and Tricks

In previous installments of this series, I’ve shown how you can quickly create REST-based services accessible via HTTP that allow you to easily store and retrieve data in a Windows Store app, using several different approaches including WCF Data Services, ASP.NET Web API, and the new Windows Azure Mobile Services. You can read all of the previous parts of the series here. I recommend reading the intro post and the post on Windows Azure Mobile Services, as well as the most recent installment covering the basics of authentication with mobile services at a minimum, so you’re familiar with the games I’m using to demonstrate the concepts in the series, and with the basics of mobile services.

Continue reading Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Authentication Tips and Tricks

Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Adding Authentication

In previous installments of this series, I’ve shown how you can quickly create REST-based services accessible via HTTP that allow you to easily store and retrieve data in a Windows Store app, using several different approaches including WCF Data Services, ASP.NET Web API, and the new Windows Azure Mobile Services. You can read all of the previous parts of the series here. I recommend reading the intro post and the post on Windows Azure Mobile Services at a minimum, so you’re familiar with the games I’m using to demonstrate the concepts in the series, and with the basics of mobile services.

Continue reading Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Adding Authentication

Microsoft DevRadio: Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps (Part 1)

Here’s my next DevRadio installment, this time with me as a guest, with my fellow TEs, Brian Hitney and Peter Laudati hosting. In it, we discuss some of the topics in my blog series on building back-end services for Windows 8 apps.

Continue reading Microsoft DevRadio: Using Windows Azure to Build Back-End Services for Windows 8 Apps (Part 1)

Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Adding Push Notifications

In previous installments of this series, I’ve shown how you can quickly create REST-based services accessible via HTTP that allow you to easily store and retrieve data in a Windows Store app, using several different approaches including WCF Data Services, ASP.NET Web API, and the new Windows Azure Mobile Services. You can read all of the previous parts of the series here. I recommend reading the intro post at a minimum, so you’re familiar with the games I’m using to demonstrate the concepts in the series.

Continue reading Building Back-end Data and Services for Windows 8 Apps: Adding Push Notifications