What is most valuable?
We have most of our servers running as VM's in Azure. While still a hybrid environment, we are gradually moving all our servers and applications to Azure.
Azure Active Directory and Azure Active Directory Domain Services make it possible to have Azure VM's join a domain without the need for additional domain controllers. Users can join their CYOD to Azure Active Directory using their Azure credentials. With MDM in place, we also have the means to manage all devices, CYOD or BYOD.
The Disaster Recovery service - Azure Site Recovery (ASR) has enabled us to have our production servers and applications replicated to Azure and ready to take over in case of a major failure or when a site goes down. In addition, ASR helps us save money on expensive hardware.
How has it helped my organization?
It has helped us to scale, no matter what Azure feature you use. Scalability is of the utmost importance.
What needs improvement?
- MDM: Mobile Device Management (MDM) and Intune features are slowly moving over to Azure. I think as an integrated feature, there will be better ways to manage mobile devices.
- Azure backup: It is still hard to configure and to figure out which Azure backup component to use for backing up different data on various storages.
For how long have I used the solution?
We have been using the solution for four years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
We did not encounter any issues with stability.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We did not encounter any issues with scalability.
How is customer service and technical support?
The technical support is skilled.
How was the initial setup?
Everything you do for the first time can be complex. Setting up a VM in Azure is straightforward, but setting up a Disaster Recovery plan or moving a complete infrastructure to Azure can be complex.
Most of the complexity has to do with initial lack of experience. Diving into the material, study and hard work together with colleagues helps a lot.
An experienced System Administrator with years of on-premise experience will be able to make the move to Azure.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
As a consultant, I leave this area to my sales colleagues. When in doubt, contact Microsoft. They will be able to clarify your questions.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We are a Microsoft Gold Partner, so we only use MS products.
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We are a Microsoft Gold Partner and help other businesses with a smooth migration to Azure Cloud.
Jul 15 2017