Changing the Windows Azure Compute Emulator IP Address

While monitoring twitter tonight I noticed a tweet from Ryan Graham looking for a solution to change the Host Headers for the Windows Azure Compute Emulator (formerly known as DevFabric). With a little bit of investigation I figured out a solution to change the default IP Address that the Compute Emulator is bound to.

Navigate to %ProgramFiles%\Windows Azure SDK\v1.3\

Windows Azure SDK 1.3

This is the home of the Windows Azure SDK Version 1.3 [Unfortunately, SDK Versions cannot be installed side-by-side].

Navigate to the bin folder. The bin folder contains all of the Command-Line Tools for the Windows Azure SDK which includes:

  • CSPack – For Packaging Deployments into CSPKG Files.
  • CSRun – For Deploying your application to Windows Azure Compute Emulator.
  • CSUpload – For Uploading VHDs to a VM Role.

Navigate to the DevFabric Folder, this is the home of the newly named Compute Emulator.


You’ll notice IISConfigurator.exe which bootstraps the Role into IIS. You’ll also notice that there is a IISConfigurator.exe.config which contains the configuration for the Executable.


Changing the Value for the FixedSiteBindingIpAddress will change the IP Address that the instance is bound to within IIS.

Once you have changed the IP Address to something more appropriate or unused by other websites on your local machine you can then change the Windows Hosts file to assign a URL to the IP Address that was just assigned to your new compute instance.

The Windows Hosts file is located in %windir%\System32\drivers\etc


By following the instructions in the hosts file to associate a URL to the IP Address that you set in the IISConfigurator.exe.config file.

Happy Clouding!

Windows Azure Troubleshooting Glossary

One of the hardest things we face as developers is Troubleshooting and Debugging code in different environments and scenarios, this continues to hold true in the Cloud. This Blog post will outline some of the resources available to developers that are trying to troubleshoot Windows Azure.

Developers, Developers, Developers... Code with Microsoft

Troubleshooting the Environment in Windows Azure

Troubleshooting Windows Azure Operating System Issues

Even though the Cloud attempts to limit diversity amongst it’s hardware, the Operating System is something that will always need to be able to adapt new features or emerging security threats.

One thing that Microsoft has done particularly well is keeping Operating System upgrades very Abstract in Windows Azure by releasing a new Virtual Machine (VM) Image (OS Guest) with every set of new upgrades. The VM images are controlled in the Cloud Service Configuration (cscfg) file by setting the osFamily and osVersion attributes.

OS Guest Resources

VM Role Resources

Troubleshooting Windows Azure Deployment

Deployment is the stage of development in which you have the least amount of control. A number of Debugging paradigms are not available unless the Role Initializes and is created successfully. Once the Role is created, you will be able to debug using Remote Desktop Access to Windows Azure (if configured), or Download Intellitrace Diagnostics Information (if enabled).

With the introduction of Start-Up Tasks, many new scenarios that may involve debugging have been introduced. Be sure to test your startup scripts using RDP before trying to deploy your application with the Tasks configured in the Cloud Service Definition (csdef) file.

Deployment Resources

Service Management Resources

Windows Azure Diagnostics Resources

Troubleshooting Windows Azure Platform

This includes both the Tools & SDK as well as support for .NET Libraries & Technologies.

Windows Azure Platform Resources

Windows Azure

Troubleshooting SQL Azure

SQL Azure is a Relational Database System in the Cloud. Microsoft’s Cloud approach to the cloud does not limit support for Popular Programming Languages and therefore was a need for a Management Component for SQL Azure to allow those who are not using the Microsoft Stack a way to manage their SQL Azure database without the need to install SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS).

SQL Azure Database Troubleshooting

When Microsoft started Venturing down the road of Creating SQL Azure they had a number of security concerns to address exposing a full features SQL Server instance in the Cloud. With this in mind, there were a number of features that were pulled out of SQL Azure from your typical install of SQL Server 2008.

Along the same lines of feature support for SQL Azure, there were a number of commands that needed to be cut from T-SQL in the Cloud.

SQL Azure Resources

Transact-SQL (T-SQL) Resources

SQL Azure Manager Troubleshooting

Formerly Project Houston, the Database Manager for SQL Azure is a new service offering (Released at PDC 2010).  An extremely compelling offering being able to manage a database from any computer that has internet connectivity, with one limitation, a dependency on the Silverlight Browser Plugin (which in my opinion *everyone* should have).

Database Manager for SQL Azure Resources


Troubleshooting Windows Azure Security

Security is one of the Major concerns in the Cloud, Hopefully you aren’t using these to troubleshoot someone breaking into your application on Windows Azure, but actually reading them while you’re preparing your architecture plans for your system.

Windows Azure Security Resources

How To Suggest a Feature for Windows Azure?

One of the great things that the Windows Azure Team and SQL Azure Team are doing is accepting public suggestions for features to be implemented on the Windows Azure Platform.

My Great Windows Azure Idea

My Great SQL Azure Idea

Many product teams do have a feedback loop by using Microsoft Connect, but Connect is typically used more for bug tracking rather than Feature requests.

Here are a few features that I’d like to see supported:

Happy Clouding!