Cloud

Microsoft Azure SharePoint Architectures

Are you interested in cloud services, but aren’t quite ready to move all your data to a public, multi-tenant environment? Do you have a development or test environment that is costing you too much money to create/migrate/upgrade/maintain? Do you have a need to implement Disaster Recovery for your on premises SharePoint deployment?
You may be interested to know that Microsoft Azure IaaS (infrastructure as a service) provides many different hosted SharePoint options. Azure is a good environment for hosting a SharePoint Server solution. In most cases, we recommend Office 365, but a SharePoint Server farm hosted in Azure can be a good option for specific solutions.microsoft-azure-logo_11368901
Let’s have a look at a few examples and why they might be a good fit for Azure:
1. Development and test environments
Dev and test environments can be costly. They require hardware resources that your infrastructure team must manage and maintain. They also require human time in configuring, updating, and patching those servers. With Microsoft Azure, it’s easy to create and manage Dev and Test environments that can be scaled, easily updated, and deleted/recreated if necessary.
2. Disaster recovery of on-premises SharePoint farms to Azure
Microsoft Azure can be a cost effective alternative for a hosted secondary datacenter. Use Azure instead of investing precious dollars and human resources in a datacenter in a different region. You can also use Azure for lower cost disaster recovery environments. Maintain and pay for fewer resources than an on-premises disaster recovery environment. Finally, Azure provides a more elastic platform. In the event of a disaster, easily scale-out your recovery SharePoint farm to meet load requirements. Scale in when you no longer need the resources.
3. Internet-facing sites that use features and scale not available in Office 365
By putting your internet sites on Azure, you can focus on developing a great site rather than building infrastructure. You can take advantage of the elastic nature of Azure. Size the farm for the demand, and pay only for resources you need. You can also take advantage of Azure AD for customer accounts. And you can add SharePoint functionality not available in Office 365 like deep reporting and web analytics.
How easy is it to get started?
Really easy. Simply login to the Azure portal at http://portal.azure.com – and follow these simple instructions.
You can create a basic or high availability SharePoint farm. Here’s a view of the basic farm configuration, it provides everything you need – 1 SharePoint Server, 1 SQL Database Server and 1 Domain Controller.
azuresp2
What if I want to configure my own Azure SharePoint Virtual Network?
That’s a bit more complicated, but still not too difficult. Start by reviewing these basic SharePoint Architecture diagrams.
Next, visit this TechNet article which will walk you through the steps to complete the following:

  1. Determine the Active Directory domain type
  2. Design the Virtual Network
  3. Add site-to-site VPN connectivity
  4. Plan cloud services
  5. Add Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) and DNS
  6. Add the SharePoint farm
  7. Design and fine tune server roles for availability sets and fault domains

Or contact us at Perficient and one of our certified Solution Architects can help design your Microsoft Azure farm!

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