With the launch of the Virtual Machine preview on Windows Azure along with Media Services and Websites I have been busy just setting up a few environments. It has been really easy to spin up new VMs very quickly – literally in few clicks once you have registered for the preview for Virtual Machine. What’s even better is that it is free for 90 days .
To be able to quickly start experiencing the benefits of SQL Server 2012, go to www.windowsazure.com and click on the Free Trial button and sign up, its that easy.
Once you have signed up for the free trial, you will get access to the Metro Portal:
Click on the +New at the bottom left hand corner
Then you can click on either Quick Create (which as the name implies allows you to provide minimal information such as name, the template, sizing information) or use the gallery option to enable you to provide more advanced options. Clicking Quick Create allows you to spin up a SQL Server 2012 VM very quickly:
Once you click on create virtual machine, it literally takes
About 5-10 minutes later the VM is ready to connect to.
You can then select the virtual machine from the portal and get a dashboard view of the configuration and performance stats, and on bottom are the various commands you can conduct including connecting (RDP) to the VM.
Once connected you can start working with familiar tools of SQL Server management studio and others. The image also contains the full setup files (C:\SQLServer_11.0_Full) of SQL Server 2012 Evaluation edition so you can add/remove features as needed.
Hope this quick tour of the new Virtual machine capability inspires you to create quick lab/development environments in Windows Azure. For more information, please visit our Wiki for more information.