[Azure] News for Developers, June 2019

This entry is part 25 of 52 in the series Azure news for Developers

Are you having trouble keeping track of everything that’s going around in Azure? You’re not alone! In an effort to do so myself, I’m starting a monthly series called “News for developers” which is exactly that: a summary of all of the Azure flavored news specifically for software developers. Now this is based on my personal feeds and my personal opinion, so you might miss things or see things which in your opinion do not matter. Feel free to comment below and I’ll see what I can do for the next edition. And honestly, this is more a personal reference than anything else so having actual readers would already be awesome 🙂 Enjoy!


Generally Available

All of the items below are now GA, which means they are stable for production use and officially supported by Microsoft. Although its fine to use preview services for evaluation and development purpose, you’re safest option is to wait with taking things into production until they’re officially “GA-ed”.

  • Cognitive Services Named entity recognition can help you identify things like persons, dates, quantities and e-mail addresses in text (English and Spanish). (link)
  • Azure Application Gateway Web Application Firewall custom rules are now Generally Available. (link)
  • For MySQL and MariaDB databases, Azure SQL now supports database auditing. (link)
  • DevTest pricing (which is cheap!) for Managed SQL Azure database is now available for Visual Studio subscribers. (link)
  • If you want to include text reading in your application, you can now use the Immersive Reading Cognitive Services offering. (link)
  • Azure premium files now offers a premium filesharing option in Azure, delivering consistent performance for IO-intensive workloads that require high-throughput and low latency. (link)
  • Storage Autogrow is available for SQL Azure databases for PostgreSQL, MySQL and MariaDB. (link)


Visual Studio & Azure DevOps

Here’s the news coming from the Visual Studio and Azure DevOps teams!

For Visual Studio lovers:

  • If you want to provide input for the Visual Studio team, their UserVoice site will be closing and the ‘Suggest a Feature’ option on the community site is now the place to go! (link)
  • If your company (Enterprise) is building custom Visual Studio extensions which you do not want to put in the global marketplace, there is now the option to create a private gallery. (link)
  • Visual Studio 2019 is on 19.2 preview 2 (link), for Mac version 8.1 was release along with a preview of version 8.2. (link)
  • For Java Developers, Visual Studio Code now offers the Java Pack Installer. (link)

And these updates were part of sprints 153 and 154 in Azure DevOps:

  • The Azure DevOps IP ranges have changed, update your firewalls! (link)
  • GitHub activity can now be viewed from the KanBan board. (link)
  • You can now easily copy a work item including links and attachments. (link)
  • YAML Pipelines have been updated to better support artifacts (link) and schedules in cron format. (link)
  • You can now easily search for packages in the package feed. (link)
  • Azure DevOps CLI is now GA. (link)
  • Security groups and permissions can now be managed from the command line (link)
  • Work items can now be found using instant search. (link)
  • You can now link releases to work items on a Jira board. (link)
  • There were also some updates made to the DevOps integration for Slack. (link)
  • GitHub releases can now be used as artifact sources. (link)
  • There is now auditing for Azure repos events. (link)

Changes to Azure DevOps can take up to three weeks to roll out across tenants. The Visual Studio blog can be found here: https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/visualstudio. And the Azure DevOps team blog is here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/devops/release-notes.


App Service specific updates

There was just one applicable update coming from the Azure App Services teams:

  • Looking for API Apps in the Azure portal marketplace? Look for Web App instead, cause the old icon has been removed! (link)

The app services team keeps track of their updates in blog posts and in this github repo. Check them out!


Azure / other

Here’s all the stuff that didn’t fit into one of the above categories:

  • Within Azure DevTest labs, you can now provide a shared image galery. This supports global replication, versioning and grouping; and more! (link)
  • Also for DevTest labs, there is a PowerShell module for more easy management. (link)
  • The regional limits for deploying Azure SQL Managed instances have been increased. (link)
  • If you’re using DTU based Azure SQL databases, note that the default retention period is changing! (link)


That’s it for this month, see you next month for another round of Azure news!



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