A fully managed website and app hosting service

There are many different places and ways to host your websites, applications in the cloud. A new trend in the industry has been the rise of platform as a service (PaaS) offerings. These services take away most of the maintenance and responsibility from the user offering a simple way to host your application without all the hassle. In this article we provide an overview of Microsoft’s offering, Azure App Service.

What is Azure App Service?

Azure App Service is an HTTP-based platform as a service (PaaS) offering from Microsoft. It is used to host web applications, websites, REST APIs and mobile back ends. As mentioned the main purpose of Azure App Service is to provide an easier and more time efficient method of launching and managing your applications.

Azure App Service allows you to deploy in your favourite languages, both in Windows and Linux based environments. It is a fully scalable solution so you don’t have to worry about virtual machine sizing. There is no need to purchase server licenses or update or patch the servers as all of this is managed by Microsoft.

Azure App Service provides some great additional capability such as additional security features, load balancing, autoscaling and automated management. The full integration with Azure DevOps, GitHub and Docker Hub also provides enhanced application development processes.

Like all of Microsoft’s services you are charged for the resources that you use. You select an Azure App service plan and are charged the relevant rate for the compute you use based on that plan. It is more expensive than a standard VM but as mentioned there are a lot of features and work managed by Microsoft and no need for a Server license which is an often overlooked cost.

Why use Azure App services?

Here are some of the key reasons to use Azure App Services:

  • Multiple languages and frameworks – Azure App Services supports ASP.NET, ASP.NET Core, Java, Ruby, Node.js, PHP, or Python. You can also run PowerShell and other scripts or executables as background services.
  • Automatic updates – Azure App Service will automatically patch and maintain the OS and language frameworks.
  • Security and compliance – Azure App Service allows you to manage service identities, restrict IP access and has full integration with a wide range of user authentication capability including Azure Active Directory, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter.
  • Containerisation and Docker capability – For app builders Docker or a custom Windows or Linux container offers the ability to secure the wider application environment to reduce any unexpected issues. Azure App Service offers the ability to run multi-container apps and migrate Docker skills directly to Azure App Service.
  • DevOps optimisation – DevOps is a key element of any application. Continuous integration and deployment is available from Azure DevOps, GitHub, Azure Container Registry, BitBucket and Docker Hub. You can also promote updates through testing and staging environments.
  • Out of the box connectors – Azure App Service comes with over 50 connectors to top SaaS providers and comes with on-premise using hybrid connection and Azure Virtual Network.
  • Application templates – Choose from an extensive list of application templates in the Azure Marketplace, such as WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal.

Azure App Service is a key step forward for hosting your websites, web applications and mobile applications. If you would like to find out more or get a quote to move your applications to Azure App Service please contact us today or book our free application modernisation briefing.