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Microsoft rolls out new Azure cloud services and features

Microsoft announced several new Windows Azure features and services on April 12, the first day of its Mix '11 conference for developers and designers.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor on

Microsoft announced several new Windows Azure features and services on April 12, the first day of its Mix '11 conference for developers and designers.

Among the new Azure platform services:

  • An update to the Windows Azure SDK (software development kit), due out later today, that includes a Web Deployment Tool to simplify the migration, management and deployment of IIS Web servers, Web applications and Web sites. THe tool integrates with Visual Studio 2010 and the Web Platform Installer.
  • Updates to the Windows Azure AppFabric Access Control service, which provides a single-sign-on experience to Windows Azure applications by integrating with enterprise directories and Web identities from Microsoft, Facebook and Google.
  • The release of the Windows Azure AppFabric Caching service -- some time in the next 30 days -- which the Softies said will accelerate the performance of Windows Azure and SQL Azure applications.
  • A community technology preview (CTP) of Windows Azure Traffic Manager, a new service that allows Windows Azure customers to balance application performance across multiple geographies.
  • A preview of the Windows Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN) for Internet Information Services (IIS) Smooth Streaming capabilities, which allows developers to upload IIS Smooth Streaming-encoded video to a Windows Azure Storage account and deliver that video to Silverlight, iOS and Android Honeycomb clients.

There are also some new offers for Azure customers, explained in a new Windows Azure Team blog post.

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