Microsoft has created a lot of products. And while many people link the company with Windows. Office and Xbox, it also has a lot more on the plate. One of its most recent big success stories is the cloud platform Azure. This is a name which makes its way up the news.

Microsoft also puts a lot of effort and attention on Azure. It’s a platform which brings Microsoft more and more business and ushers the main part of the transformation of the company. When current CEO Satya Nadella first came on top of the company, he said Microsoft is changing.

It was time for a change. Time for Microsoft to adopt the new trends and open up for new possibilities. As a result, today the company is working with Linux kernel, has apps for competing platforms and… is aiming to rule the cloud service world. The last part is what Azure is all about.

Meet Microsoft Azure

Microsoft Azure is a name which more and more people hear all over the place. As the name suggest, it has something to do with the cloud. Actually, Azure is a lot more than a simple cloud service.

The official definition for Azure is Cloud Computing Platform & Services. It has over 100 services which you can mix with hybrid cloud, Artificial Intelligence and it’s very popular. According to Microsoft’s official stats, Azure is run by 90% of Fortune 500 businesses, along with several governments and many startups.

That’s all fine and well, but why? What’s so special about Azure? It can work as pretty much any other cloud service. Companies can store their data, host their sites, apps, etc. And it allows clients to use top notch hardware resources for their needs.

But Azure has a lot more to offer than that. Clients can use Azure to set up and run Virtual Machines, Apps, SQL Databases. Azure also offers end-to-end management services, development, cybersecurity and a lot more. Plus, Microsoft continuously adds new services to Azure. So, the company is building quite the vast portfolio of services under Azure. The goal is simple – to make Azure attractive to any and all companies across all industries, all over the world.

Sounds ambitious? Well, there’s more. You can use Azure as a hybrid cloud, too. This means companies can build and deploy solutions both in public or private cloud. There’s also single sign-on access for any cloud, SaaS applications and no need for VPNs.

Azure also helps companies create and use intelligent apps. There’s a lot of possibilities with real-time monitoring, threat detection, custom AI models, integrating open platforms, etc.

You can mix and match these services as you see fit. Clients only pay for what they need and what they use. Plus, Azure is open to everyone and there are free services for the first year, too. And there are data centers all over the globe to make connections fast and stable.

Azure vs the competition

It’s no huge wonder, that all of this makes Azure quite attractive to companies and developers. But Azure isn’t alone. There are a lot more cloud providers. Microsoft’s main competitors are Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud. The market leader as of 2017 is AWS, but Azure is gaining both market share and momentum.

Of course all three platforms say they are the best overall choice. But actually, they have slightly different focues. And they can be the deciding factor when choosing one of them as a main cloud provider.

AWS for example is better for content delivery, storage, huge databases and the likes. Azure on the other hand will be better for apps and offers more services for them. It’s also great on performance, AI, intelligent solutions, etc. Hybrid clouds are also regarded to be easier with Azure. Google Cloud puts more effort in future-proof infrastructure, Analytics and aims for fully serverless experience.

All three platforms put a lot of effort in making their services easy to implement. They have set up lots of guides and additional services which help make the process simple.

All three put a lot of attention on being open, too. AWS shines in this regard, but Azure has gained a lot of traction here, too. Now even Azure uses Linux for the Azure Sphere OS and Azure Sphere service.

Given all of these small differences it’s impossible to single out once platform as the ultimate choice. They are all useful for specific tasks. What’s great is that they offer free trials and quite flexible pricing. So companies can test them quite well and see what works best for them. What’s for sure is that Azure is the new star in the making.

Microsoft Azure courses for first steps

As a result, Azure skills are a hot commodity right now. Many IT professionals want to sharpen their Azure skills to open more and better opportunities. HRs and team leads also seek such skilled IT pros and also suitable Azure trainings for their teams.

The Coursedot Marketplace has a very big selection of Azure trainings. We have selected a few of them which would help anyone who wants to start their Azure journey. These are mostly Azure courses which focus on the fundamentals.

Cloud Fundamentals

Not everyone are up-to-date with the cloud technology in general. This training covers these basics and then builds on them with Microsoft’s services.

Microsoft Azure Fundamentals

As the name of this course suggests, it teaches the fundamentals of Azure. The course can also end with a certification exam.

Microsoft Azure for AWS Experts (MOC)

Jumping from Amazon Web Services (AWS) to Microsoft Azure could be challening. This training makes syncing the changes easy.

Configuring and Deploying a Private Cloud

This course helps with the private cloud setup from start to finish. It can be quite the process and this makes it easier.

Azure Integration with On-Premises Implementation Part 1

A long, 4-day training which helps bring the most of Azure and its hybrid cloud functions. Plus, it helps a lot with the introduction of Azure and its options with Virtual machines, Network services, etc.

Cybercrime Security Sessions 2018

Cybersecurity is an important topic, which many companies still neglect. Security and cloud go hand in hand. This training helps build a cybersecurity strategy, helps tackle challenges and it’s a must.

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