A Look Inside a Windows Azure Instance

Exploring an Azure Instance with RDP

A Windows Azure instance may seem like a mysterious black box, but it is really just Windows Server running in a virtual machine. Using remote desktop, I accessed an instance that I had previously deployed.

Kevin Kell wrote a good article on accessing Azure Instances using RDP, if you are interested.

The instance I accessed was a “Small Instance”, which according to Microsoft, has a 1.67Gh CPU, 1.75 GB of memory and 225 GB of storage. This computer would cost about $80 per month.

Let’s hunt around a bit. A look at Computer properties shows I have Windows Server 2008 Enterprise edition with service pack 2. I can also verify that I have 1.75 GB of RAM and one CPU.

A look at Windows Explorer shows I have three drives, and sure enough 225 GB of instance storage.


The instance I deployed was a Web role. That’s just a fancy way of saying IIS is running and the ASP.NET application that I deployed is set up. See the screen shot below.


A look at my Web application’s Advanced Settings shows the application I deployed was uploaded into the computer’s E drive.

I was also curious about what versions of the .NET Framework were installed. It turns out they all are.


If you are already a Windows administrator or .NET developer you can take advantage of cloud computing and Azure’s benefits, while leveraging your existing knowledge. Those benefits include, reduced administration, simplified deployment, massive scalability and fault tolerance. If you’d like to learn more about Azure, come to Learning Tree’s Windows Azure training course.

If you want to use Windows Azure, but don’t know .NET programming, come to Learning Tree’s Introduction to .NET training course.

Doug Rehnstrom

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