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4 Microsoft Azure Services for Software Development and Modernization

Author: Tom Moore | | August 5, 2021


Modernizing your legacy IT is one of the most common ways to enact digital transformation, but not every organization knows how to get started with such a project.

In a previous blog post, we discussed a number of ways that you can modernize your legacy applications, including cloud migrations, microservices and DevOps. Below, we’ll go into more detail about the Microsoft Azure cloud, including some of the most important Azure features and services for developing and modernizing applications.

1. Azure Machine Learning

Machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) have been cited as keys to digital transformation for organizations of all sizes and industries. Azure Machine Learning is Microsoft’s “machine learning as a service” offering in the Azure cloud, making it easier for businesses to enjoy AI insights.

Azure Machine Learning simplifies the process of building, training, and deploying production-ready machine learning models. While it includes a user-friendly, drag-and-drop interface, Azure Machine Learning can also be used by data scientists and machine learning professionals who want to get more from the experience.

2. Azure Service Fabric

Azure Service Fabric is an Azure PaaS (platform-as-a-service) offering: a distributed services platform for building, deploying, and managing containers and microservices-based applications.

Azure customers can use Service Fabric to build modular, independent microservices that communicate with each other using APIs (application programming interfaces). In fact, Azure Service Fabric is a critical part of Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure: it powers many other Azure products and services, such as Azure SQL Database, Cortana, Azure IoT, and Power BI.

3. Azure DevOps

As the name suggests, “DevOps” is a software development methodology that seeks to foster closer collaboration and tighter feedback loops between your development and IT operations teams. Azure DevOps is a collection of related services that can help your team implement DevOps in the Azure cloud.

The list of Azure DevOps services includes:

  • Azure Boards for planning and tracking work, including Kanban boards, backlogs, and dashboards.
  • Azure Pipelines for implementing CI/CD (continuous integration/continuous deployment).
  • Azure Test Plans for creating both manual and automated software tests.
  • Azure Artifacts for creating and sharing Maven, npm, NuGet, and Python packages.

4. Azure Functions

Azure Functions helps users build serverless applications. The term “serverless computing” is a bit of a misnomer: servers are still required to run your software, but developers don’t have to worry about the tasks of provisioning and maintaining them.

Serverless computing has a variety of advantages:

  • Lower costs: Applications are only executed in response to a particular event or trigger, saving you money by using fewer resources.
  • Greater scalability: Because the cloud vendor is responsible for server monitoring and maintenance, serverless computing provides built-in scalability.
  • Ease of development: Serverless computing largely frees developers from server management and maintenance, and also aligns well with methodologies such as microservices—each function is tiny and built for a single purpose.


From machine learning, microservices, DevOps and serverless computing, this article just scratches the surface of what’s possible for application modernization and development in the Azure cloud. And we should know—Datavail is a Microsoft Gold Partner that has helped countless clients migrate to the Azure cloud and modernize their legacy applications.

To learn more about how we helped a recent client modernize their IT portals in the Microsoft Azure cloud, check out our case study “Public College Modernizes Online Application Process with Azure.” You can also get in touch with our team of IT experts for a chat about your business needs and objectives.

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