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Exploring the New Horizons of Azure Stack HCI: Version 23H2 and Beyond

Exploring the New Horizons of Azure Stack HCI: Version 23H2 and Beyond

Author: Prasanth Ramanikanth/Friday, May 31, 2024/Categories: General

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Exploring the New Horizons of Azure Stack HCI: Version 23H2 and Beyond

 

Introduction

Azure Stack HCI has been a game-changer for organizations leveraging hybrid cloud capabilities. With the release of Azure Stack HCI, version 23H2, Microsoft continues to innovate, offering features that enhance cloud-based deployment, monitoring, and management. Let’s dive into what’s new and what it means for the future of hybrid cloud infrastructure.


Cloud-Based Deployment and Updates

The 23H2 release emphasizes ease of deployment directly from the cloud. This version introduces a streamlined experience for Arc VM management, ensuring that users can manage their virtual machines with the same ease as they would in the Azure portal.


Region Expansion and Enhanced Security

One of the key enhancements in the 23H2 update is the region expansion. Azure Stack HCI now supports new regions, including Southeast Asia, India Central, Canada Central, Japan East, and South Central US. This expansion not only broadens the reach of Azure Stack HCI but also brings data centers closer to users for reduced latency and improved performance.

Security has always been a top priority, and the new Azure Resource Bridge Deployment Role is a testament to that commitment. This role is designed to harden the security posture by applying the principle of least privilege to service principals involved in cluster updates.


Enabling Multi-Tenancy with Hybr®

The constant ask in Azure Stack HCI is the enablement of multi-tenancy through self-service provisioning and billing, facilitated by Cloud Assert Hybr®. Hybr® is a white-labelled, multi-tenant super app platform that offers multiple integrated services to help various enterprise and service provider scenarios. The platform is natively built as a multi-cloud management platform that provides a modern self-service experience tailored to meet super-critical business needs across pillars such as Cloud Ops, Cloud FinOps & Cost Management, Reseller Commerce, and Billing with a rich Marketplace experience.

This powerful combination allows enterprises and service providers to achieve multi-tenancy and offer an exceptional cloud experience to the end users with the following features:


Features:

Identity Integration and Billing

Hybr® elevates identity integration by allowing tenants and end-users to sign in using their preferred authentication methods, including Azure AD, Microsoft Entra ID, Enterprise ADFS credentials, or any custom identities via identity servers. This flexibility ensures a seamless and secure sign-in experience tailored to the specific needs of each organization.


Quotas, Plans, and Offers

Similar to Azure, Hybr® enables the creation of customizable plans and offers that bundle various services for customers. By leveraging quotas, plans, and offers, you can meticulously control what end-users can provision and the operations they can perform. This approach ensures tailored service delivery, aligning with customer requirements and business goals.


Software-Defined Networking (SDN)

Software-Defined Networking (SDN) is crucial for efficiently sharing a single-node Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) among multiple users. By enabling SDN on Azure Stack HCI, Hybr® empowers end-users to create their own virtual networks. This capability ensures resource isolation and optimizes network performance within a shared infrastructure, providing a robust and flexible networking environment.


Video Insight

To gain a comprehensive understanding of Hybr’s multi-tenancy capabilities, we invite you to watch our informative video featuring Aravind Sundaresan, Director at Cloud Assert, and Jayanth Dattatri, a Microsoft MVP from Dell Technologies. They delve into the nuances of enabling multi-tenancy on Azure Stack HCI with Hybr®, discussing practical aspects and the transformative benefits it brings to the Azure Stack HCI experience.


You can watch the full video

here


Hybr® has a good multi-tenant story that customers have leveraged successfully for Azure Stack HCI and other private/ hybrid cloud platforms, in addition to other rich features like usage tracking, metered billing, business intelligent dashboards and reports, etc. Hybr® can be deployed in any of the following models: a) in customers on-premise, b) in customers' Azure Subscription or c) in Cloud Assert’s SaaS platform, enabling a seamless, secured experience for the customers.

Rich Multi-Tenant Features

Hybr® offers a robust multi-tenant solution that has been successfully leveraged by customers for Azure Stack HCI and other private/hybrid cloud platforms. Key features include:

  • Usage Tracking: Monitor and track resource usage accurately.
  • Metered Billing:Implement precise billing based on actual usage.
  • Business Intelligence Dashboards and Reports: Monitor and track resource usage accurately.

Hybr® can be deployed in various models to suit different customer needs:

  • On-Premises: Deployed at the customer's own data center.
  • Customer’s Azure Subscription: Integrated within the customer's existing Azure environment.
  • Cloud Assert’s SaaS Platform: Offered as a Software-as-a-Service solution, providing a seamless and secure experience.

This deployment flexibility ensures that Hybr® can adapt to diverse operational environments, delivering a tailored, efficient, and secure multi-tenant experience for all customers.


Looking Ahead: The Future of Azure Stack HCI

As Azure Stack HCI evolves, we can expect to see further integration with Azure services, making the hybrid experience more seamless and powerful. The focus on fundamental improvements to the core hypervisor, storage, and networking will continue to be driven by user feedback.

The journey of Azure Stack HCI is exciting, with each update bringing us closer to a truly unified cloud and on-premises infrastructure. Stay tuned for more updates as we keep our eyes on the horizon for what’s next in the world of Azure Stack HCI.

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