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In my series of blog posts about working with ARM templates I have gone through a lot of different use cases. In the last post I covered how to deploy a nested template to keep the main template a lot cleaner. One thing all posts have in common is that I´m using Azure Monitor as the main track which I´m deploying. I have deployed dozens of Log Analytics Workspaces for this. Now it´s time for deploying Azure Monitor alerts as well.
Working with nested templates in Azure ARM templates is something that not all are using, and I don´t think everyone knows about it either. Nested templates are helpful when you want to do a more complex deployment of some resources. Basically, what this means is that you can deploy multiple templates from a single main template. You use one single parameters file and then pass those parameters on to the nested templates along the way.
Working with parameters in Azure is something I want to discuss a bit more than what I´ve done earlier. Azure tags have recently been covered on this blog, my previous post about that can be found here. Since I posted that article, I had another Azure blogger, Martin Ehrnst who is also an Azure MVP (his blog here) reached out to me teaching me a few things. When I did the last Azure tags post, I created one parameter for each tag I wanted to create. However, that´s not necessary.
Instead of creating one parameter for each tag, I have switched over to a new way of doing it. Instead of creating a single string, I create the tags as an object type. This means that I will be able to pass multiple values (in this case its tags) as one parameter instead. Have a look below.
Working with tags in Azure is a really important thing. It´s something that everyone should do as soon as they start to move workloads to Azure. In my last two posts I showed how to get started here. And here I showed how to comply with your naming conventions for Azure resources as well. The two examples I showed in those posts aren´t at all complicated, but they lack one major thing. Tags.
In my last post which you can find here, I wrote about how to get started writing ARM templates for you Azure deployments. In the end I provided an ARM template built solely for that blog post. But the template was really basic and didn’t have much logic built into it, except for addressing a parameter to name the automation account and a variable to set the location where to create the automation account.
The first time I heard about JSON and ARM templates together with Azure in the same sentence, was in Chicago at Microsoft Ignite back in 2015. My first thought was, what are they all talking about? This was of course during the shift from Azure “classic” which was based on XML, to Azure “Resource Manager” which is based on JSON instead.
A lot has happened since my last blog post, and my motivation to write new blog posts has not really been on top. Due to the fact that my personal focus has not aligned with the company for some time now So that´s why I´m now being able to write this post about this new chapter in life.
Ever since Azure was a new thing and before it “went live”, we´ve been fed with how easy it is to get started using different services. One of my first experiences were when I deployed my blog on to the Azure platform somewhere back in 2012, and I was up and running in literally less than fifteen minutes, and this was the first time I did it which is why it took that long a time. It was just as simple as picking a WordPress instance from the gallery and deploying it. A similar experience was when I deployed my first virtual machine. A few clicks and a short time for the deployment and I had my new virtual machine ready to connect to.
More and more services are moving to the cloud, Azure is one of the larges players but AWS and Google Cloud are also two large players. But just because resources are moving to the cloud doesn’t change the fact that we need to know how our environment is doing. Since I´m a monitoring guy, I write a lot about Azure Monitor and the capabilities of it to help us monitor our resources in the best possible way. But there is another aspect I want to touch as well, Azure service health.
While we monitor our resources using Azure Monitor, who monitors Azure Monitor as a service? Microsoft of course monitors all the Azure services to keep track of the status and to take immediate action when something goes down. We have the possibility to check up on Azure services from within Azure Monitor and that´s what I will be telling you more about with this post.