[Azure] News for Developers, March 2021

This entry is part 45 of 52 in the series Azure news for Developers

Hope everyone had a nice easter, should you celebrate it. But now it’s time to dive into Azure once again!

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. Want to know more? Check out the readme.


Here is a roll-up of all the Azure news which might relate to you as a developer. Note that all services mentioned are Generally Available (GA) so they can be used in production scenarios today. Exact availability of services might vary based on the Azure region you’re deploying to.

  • Azure monitor for containers now supports Pods & Replica set live logs in AKS resource view. (link)
  • Azure Functions was updated to now support Node.js version 14 (link) and .NET 5 in production. (link)
  • Also for Azure Functions, there is now support for Python Durable Functions. (link)
  • Ever wanted to know what cold and hot potato routing is all about? Check out the new routing options in Azure. (link)
  • Support for request and response validation policies for API Management is now generally available. (link)
  • Machine learning on an Azure SQL managed instance is also GA. (link)
  • You can now use Azure Communication Services to add things like SMS, chat, voice and video to any app. (link)
  • Kubernetes support for version 1.20 is now GA. (link)
  • App Services and Functions on Windows can now access Virtual Network Restricted instances of Azure KeyVault. (link)
  • On the topic of securing things, Azure Private Link for Azure Cache for Redis is also available. (link)


Visual Studio & Azure DevOps

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

For Visual Studio lovers:

  • Visual Studio 2019 version 16.9 is out there (link) and the preview version is 16.10 preview 1. (link)
  • Visual Studio 2019 for Mac version 8.9 is now available (link)

And these updates were part of sprint 183 & 184 in Azure DevOps:

  • A warning for fans of free grants for Azure Pipelines. Temporary restrictions are in place which means you may not get a free grant of concurrent pipelines. (link)
  • Azure Artifacts upstream behavior has been changed so that packages which are already in an internal stream won’t be fetched from upstream sources as well. (link)
  • Support to configure per-pipeline retention policies will be removed for classic pipelines shortly.  Retention can than be set only on a per-project basis. (link)
  • There is now a way to limit the use of setVariable in Azure Pipelines to prevent exploits through external sources. (link)
  • If you’re using Az, Azure or Azure RM preinstalled modules on pipeline agents, check out the changes coming to the installed versions. (link)
  • There’s now to option to disable a repository which you can use for instance when a repo is not in compliance. (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.


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


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