Note to Self: A roundup of the latest Azure blog posts and whitepapers on polybase, network security, cloud services, Hadoop and Virtual Machines

Here is a roundup of Azure blogs and whitepapers which I will be reading this month.

This is the latest as at June 2014, and there is a focus on cloud security in the latest whitepapers, which you can find below..

·         PolyBase in APS – Yet another SQL over Hadoop solution?
·         Desktop virtualization deployment overview
·         Microsoft updates its Hadoop cloud solution
·         LG CNS build a B2B virtual computer service in the cloud
·         Deploying desktop virtualization
·         Microsoft updates its Hadoop cloud solution
·         Accessing desktop virtualization
·         The visualization that changed the world of data
·         Access and Information Protection: Setting up the environment
·         Access and Information Protection: Making resources available to users
·         Access and Information Protection: Simple registration for BYOD devices
·         Success with Hybrid Cloud webinar series
·         Power BI May round-up
·         Access and Information Protection: Syncing and protecting corporate information

Here are the latest whitepapers, which focus on security:

Windows Azure Security: Technical Insights. Update to the Security Overview whitepaper which provides a detailed description of security features and controls.
  • Security Best Practices for Windows Azure Solutions. Updated guidance on designing and developing secure solutions.
  • Windows Azure Network Security. Recommendations for securing network communications for applications deployed in Windows Azure.
  • Microsoft Antimalware for Azure Cloud Services and Virtual Machines This paper details how to use Microsoft Antimalware to help identify and remove viruses, spyware, and other malicious software in Azure Cloud Services and Virtual Machines.
  • PASS BA Conference: Announcing my R and Hadoop session

    I'm delighted to announce that I will be presenting at the PASS Business Analytics Conference in May 5 - 7 in San Jose, California.

    If you are looking for a discount, here is a code to get $150 dollars off: BASF2O and to Register click here:


    How can you determine your organization's “secret sauce”? Data scientists and business analysts need a way of combining the scalability of Big Data with the ability to conduct extensive data analysis to find the key ingredients to your company’s unique value propositions hidden in the enterprise data.

    In my session, we will look at R, the world's favorite free data analysis tool, and HDInsight, which is Microsoft's distribution of Hadoop. We will also look at an end-to-end solution to see how to discover key business strengths based on the data. We will then visualize the results in Microsoft's latest Business Intelligence toolset, Power BI.

    Big Data is not just  about storing massive amounts of data in a common database; it is a force of change for the organization. This means we have to consider the collective capabilities of the platform to serve the business - from data source to secret sauce - to help the organization make data-driven decisions that drive the enterprise forward.

    Analysing Data with Hive and Power BI Slides from SQLRally Amsterdam

    Here are my slides from SQLRally Amsterdam. A major thanks to the SQLRally Amsterdam crew, lead by Andre Kamman, for all their hard work in putting together this great community event!

    I hope that helps!
    Kind Regards,

    Microsoft is coming to Hemel Hempstead for a free of SQL Server, Windows Server and System Center training!

    SQLRelay and Cloud OS Relay are joining forces at Hemel Hempstead for a great, free day of training! This will be held on 15th November at Shendish Manor, which is in Hemel Hempstead.

    As featured on TechNet, we will be having a SQL Server track and a separate Infrastructure track, which is dedicated to Infrastructure specialists. If you are a Windows Server 2012 or a Systems Centre 2012 technical person, then this Infrastructure-track is focused at you.

    Click on the link to register for the SQL Server track, or click here if you’re interested in the Windows Server R2 and Systems Center R2 Training.

    For the SQL Server 2012 track, the Agenda is here:

    09:00 09:30 Registration
    09:30 10:00 Microsoft Keynote and Q&A
    10:00 10:50 Scott Kline – Microsoft SQL Server In-Memory OLTP Deep Dive
    10:50 11:10 Break 
    11:10 12:00 Chris Harris (Hortonworks) – Hadoop as an Enterprise Data Platform
    12:00 12:50 Allan Mitchell – Making the most of your Azure data with Pig and Hive
    12:50 13:30 A free lunch will be provided for you
    13:30 14:25 Denny Cherry – Table Indexing for the .NET developer
    14:25 15:20 Tony Rogerson – SQL Server 2014 Hekaton Deep Dive
    15:20 15:40 Break
    15:40 16:35 Jen Stirrup – From Data Source to Secret Sauce – Powering and Visualising your Data with Power BI

    If you’d like to register for this, please click here.
    See you there!
    Kind Regards,

    Data Visualisation with Hadoop, Hive, Power BI and Excel 2013 – Slides from SQLPass Summit and SQLSaturday Bulgaria

    I presented this session at SQLPass Summit 2013 and at SQLSaturday Bulgaria.

    The topic focuses on some data visualisation theory, an overview of Big Data and finalises the Microsoft distribution of Hadoop. I will try to record the demo as part of a PASS Business Intelligence Virtual Chapter online webinar at some point, so please watch this space.

    I hope you enjoy and I look forward to your feedback.

    Eating the Elephant: Totally free videos showing an introduction to Visualising Big Data for Business Intelligence Professionals

    Continuing my ‘eating the Elephant, one bite at a time’ series, which focuses on Microsoft Business Intelligence and Hadoop, I’ve put together a series of totally free videos, to help people who are interested in visualising Big Data using familiar tools in Microsoft. The purpose is to take data from various data sources, including SQL Server, HDInsight (Microsoft’s distro of Hadoop) and Excel, and visualise the data via PowerPivot and Excel.

    Self Service Bi – and Big Data – a Business Intelligence person’s dream! Well, it is for me!

    As I say in these videos, Excel is the world’s favourite software for Business Intelligence, and it must surely rank as one of the most favourite software applications of all time. Excel is used (and abused!) more than any other software I’ve seen.

    I hope that you will enjoy the videos and I look forward to your feedback. You can access them on YouTube here

    Please note: in the process of practising for my Big Data precon at SQLPass Summit in Charlotte on 15th October, I reused the material from a fantastic blog post by Cindy Gross of the SQLCat team and I’d like to thank Cindy and her team for writing this material.

    The blog post is here and I recommend that you go through it – I just videoed it, but the material belongs to them so I’d like to make sure that they get credit for the blog post, so that’s why I’m emphasising that I’m calling it out.

    Please note that this isn’t material from my actual precon – it’s simply a way of me to work my way through preparing for the precon I’m presenting jointly with Allan Mitchell (SQL Server MVP). I have simply put it in video format in order to practice my delivery, and then it struck me that people might find this useful. If so, look out for more videos in future!

    I hope it helps.
    Kind Regards,

    Hadoop Summit Europe 2014 Call for Abstracts is now open

    Hadoop Summit Europe 2014 Call for Abstracts is now open

    If you are interested in registering, please click here. Good luck! The call for Abstracts for the EMEA Hadoop Summit is now officially open. FYR the closing date is 31st October 2013.
    Who should submit? If you are a developer, architect, administrator, data analyst, data scientist, IT or business leader or otherwise involved with Apache Hadoop and have a compelling topic that you would like to present at Hadoop Summit, the Hadoop folks will welcome your submission. 
    What do you get?
    Being part of a fun Hadoop crowd! Being a speaker is all kinds of cool. (For me, this is the best bit!)
    All presenters receive a complimentary all-access pass to Hadoop Summit so you get to learn too. 
    What should you submit?
    The content selection committee is particularly interested in compelling use cases and success stories, best practices, cautionary tales and technology insights that help to advance the adoption of Apache Hadoop.
    Tracks this year include:
    • Committer – Speakers in this track are restricted to committers across all Hadoop-related Apache projects only and content will be curated by a group of senior committers
    • The Future of Apache Hadoop – Investigating the key projects, incubation projects and the industry initiatives driving Hadoop innovation.
    • Data Science & Hadoop – Discussing applications, tools, and algorithms, research and emerging applications that use and extend the Hadoop platform for data science
    • Hadoop Deployment & Operations – Focusing on deployment, operation and administration of Hadoop clusters at scale, with an emphasis on tips, tricks, best practices and war stories
    • Hadoop for Business Applications and Development – Presentation topics that discuss the languages, tools, techniques, and solutions for deriving business value from data.

    Submission deadline October 31, 2013.

    Good luck!