Recent Enhancements Cloud Computing

Windows Azure has now been updated with .NET Framework 4.0, and there are new tools for Visual Studio and an updated SDK. The tools are much improved. You can now view the status of your Azurehosted services and get read-only access to Azure data from within the Visual Studio IDE.

Debugging Azure applications is now easier, thanks to a feature called IntelliTrace that keeps a configurable log of application state so you can trace errors later. Deployment is nowstreamlined, and it can now be done directly from the IDE rather than through an Azure portal. The Azure database service, SQL Azure, has been updated too. It now supports spatial data types and databases up to 50GB. There is also a new preview of an Azure Data Synch Service, which controls synchronizing data across multiple datacenters, and a web manager for SQL Server on Azure.

Microsoft AppFabric, a free add-on for Microsoft’s web server, is now done. AppFabric has two features which are only loosely related. One is a distributed cache, which lets you scale web sites by caching data across multiple servers. The other is a promising runtime for workflow applications. Workflow applications with long-running state can be tricky to implement, and AppFabric in conjunction with new tools in Visual Studio 2010 is an interesting and rapid development approach.

Accessing Azure from anywhere. (Used with permission from

Accessing Azure from anywhere. (Used with permission from


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