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Application Hosting in Azure

4th July 2016

Microsoft Azure offers simple, scalable computing resource that allows application hosting in a familiar environment that can reduce infrastructure costs and improve flexibility while also providing more stability.

The modern workforce is more distributed than ever.  Staff work flexibly, using different devices and from different locations around the world, but still need the ability to access critical applications when they need them.  The cloud offers the ability to deliver those applications to users without the need to invest in and maintain expensive on premises infrastructure.

Simplifying Infrastructure for Application Hosting

Traditional application hosting usually requires multiple physical servers to be provisioned to handle the different elements of the software.  SharePoint for example requires the following:

  • Application Servers
  • SQL Servers
  • Document Servers
  • Active Directory

When resilience and back-ups are taken into account, the server infrastructure can become burdensome for a business – expensive to acquire, maintain, and power, not to mention inflexible.  By comparison, virtual systems – IaaS – can be deployed quickly, scaled depending on business needs, and offers major cost savings thanks to Pay As You Go pricing, and the removal of requirements for maintenance.

Managing Applications in Azure

One of the major advantages of Microsoft Azure application hosting is that all of your virtual infrastructure and software deployment is handled through the Azure Dashboard.  New Virtual Machines can be provisioned quickly and application updates and patches can be rolled out through test environments to ensure compatibility.  Even user management can be handled.

When the standard Azure dashboard is combined with igroup’s Cloud Control Management suite, the process of keeping your application hosting infrastructure working correctly is simplified even further, as all of the OS level patches are also handled along with identity management.

Cost Savings of Application Hosting in Azure with Cloud Control

Cloud Control – igroup’s suite of Azure management applications further improves the cost efficiency of hosting your applications in Azure.  Our resource scaling systems run in the background to “turn down” machines to lower levels when they’re not in use.  This can provide savings of up to 40% to clients, as the virtual machines don’t need to be run (and charged) at the maximum specification when it’s not required.

Do Applications Need Additional Development to Run in Azure?

One of the big questions about deploying existing applications into Azure is whether there is a need to run a major development programme.  In most cases, the answer is no.

The ability to create virtual machines to custom specifications including OS Version, power, and scale means that it’s possible to virtualise almost any environment – so you can create a spec that matches what your application is already using and reduce the need re-develop an application that’s already been running on a traditional server.

The Microsoft RemoteApp Platform uses Remote Desktop Services capabilities to enable you to migrate existing applications painlessly and for staff to access them using almost any device type.

Igroup can provide almost out of the box compatibility and spec your infrastructure for most popular applications including Sage, SharePoint, Dynamics, and many more, and our consultancy team are able to review your existing infrastructure to create a tailored cloud environment quickly to help you migrate efficiently.  Simply call us today on 0203 697 0302 to tell us what you need, and we’ll be able to provide you with a quote and start the migration process.

More Reliable Connections

With traditional infrastructure, up-time can be a concern.  Outages for maintenance can cause major issues and impact productivity throughout a business.  Azure’s standard uptime SLA is 99.5%.  With Cloud Control’s additional back up and flexibility, we can increase the uptime further by spreading application VMs across multiple cloud data centres.  The uptime SLA you get with igroup and Cloud Control is 99.99% – that’s the same as a Tier IV data centre at a fraction of the cost.

Expert Support

One of the major challenges with migrating your business applications to Azure from traditional infrastructure is the skills gap you may have in your business.  That’s where our team excel.  We are fully Microsoft Certified for Azure deployment and systems design, and can provide ongoing Azure support for your environment once deployed.  That means you won’t need to recruit additional staff to provide the expertise to keep business critical systems running as you need them.

Next Steps

If your business is ready to start moving your applications to Azure, or you want to get a quote to find out whether you could reduce your costs with igroup’s scalable server model using Cloud Control, contact a member of our cloud consultancy team today on 0203 697 0302, or email us at

Call now on 0203 697 0302 to speak to a member of our team

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