Read our White Paper, “DevOps and the Cloud: Chef and Microsoft Azure”
Chef and Microsoft Azure make a great team. Use Chef to manage both Windows and Linux VMs on Microsoft Azure and enjoy a consistent experience across all platforms. Chef's integration with the Microsoft Azure portal makes it easy to configure any VM.
Chef helps you migrate existing workloads to Microsoft Azure. With Chef, you can quickly deploy in a way that's consistent, secure and visible to all stakeholders.
Chef partnered with Microsoft to develop functionality that adheres to Microsoft best practices. As a result, Windows developers and IT professionals will find Chef to be a natural fit.
Use Chef to manage every aspect of your Microsoft Azure cloud environment. Here's a simple example. How often do you need to create storage containers whenever you configure a new VM? With Chef, you can write code that makes this common task a versionable, repeatable process.
azure_storage_container container_name do storage_account stg_account access_key stg_key action :create end
This code creates a storage container named container_name, if it doesn't already exist. It's a part of the Azure cookbook. There's also a Chef plug-in, made specifically for Microsoft Azure, called knife-azure. With this plug-in you can, for example, set affinity groups, set the name of a storage account, and set the host name of the VM. Download the plug-in, add your security credentials, and you're ready to go.
Using the Microsoft Azure portal, you can deploy a correctly configured Chef client to the VM You don't need to enable additional protocols or do anything with the VM besides boot it and connect to the Chef server.
DSC is a PowerShell-based configuration system for Windows that is provided by Microsoft. Together, Chef and DSC make a powerful combination for managing your infrastructure, both in your data center and on Microsoft Azure.
Chef and DSC share common concepts, such as the notion of policy-based convergence. Properties in DSC are similar to attributes in Chef. Resources in DSC are similar to Chef resources. Using Chef's forthcoming DSC support, any resource that exists in DSC will be available in the Chef DSL.
Although we're still developing our DSC support, you can get a sense of where we're heading. Take a look at Power Chef - Enhanced PowerShell Integration for Chef Recipes. Adam Edwards gave this presentation at ChefConf 2014. Another good resource is PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) and DevOps in Windows Azure. This talk occurred at Microsoft's TechEd 2014. In it, Chef's Julian Dunn demonstrates how to use DSC from Chef (his demo begins at approximately 51:00).
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Get started with Chef to maximize the speed and efficiency of your Microsoft Azure infrastructure.
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