Az Update: AZ-104 Beta Exam available, Azure Feedback, Azure Edge Zones and new Disks
Published Apr 02 2020 11:11 PM 10.4K Views

With all the changes in Azure, it is sometimes hard to keep track, that's why I thought I would give you a quick update on a couple of exciting things I learned this week. In this update, I want to share a couple of things around Azure like the new Az-104 Azure Administrator Exam Beta, how does Azure collect feedback, huge demand on Microsoft cloud services, Azure Edge Zones, and much more!


Az-104 Azure Administrator Exam (Beta) is now available

Yesterday Microsoft World Wide Learning announced the availability of the new Az-104 Azure Administrator Exam Beta. You can start taking the Az-104 beta exam today and take advantage of the discounted beta exam offer. The first 300 people who take the AZ-104 beta exam on or before May 31, 2020, can get 80% off market price! 

Microsoft Certified Azure AdministratorMicrosoft Certified Azure Administrator

To receive the discount, register now. When you’re prompted for payment, use code AZ104WAGONER. This is not a private access code. The seats are offered on a first-come, first-served basis. You must take the exam on or before May 31, 2020.


If you are thinking of taking this exam, also check out my AZ-104 Azure Administrator Certification Exam Study Guide.


How does the Microsoft Azure team capture and manage customer feedback

This week I shared a new episode of Azure Unblogged video, in which I had the chance to talk to Holly Lehman (Program Manager Azure CxP) to discuss Microsoft Feedback and Customer engagement programs. In this episode, Holly gives us an overview of the ways Microsoft offers product team engagement with our customers and how some teams are managing captured feedback.


You can watch the full video here or on Microsoft Channel 9.



Update #2 on Microsoft cloud services continuity

Last Saturday, the Microsoft Azure team shared some updates on the demand for Azure cloud services. The team shares that in response to health authorities emphasizing the importance of social distancing, they have seen usage increases in services that support these scenarios—including Microsoft Teams, Windows Virtual Desktop, and Power BI.


  • We have seen a 775 percent increase in Teams' calling and meeting monthly users in a one month period in Italy, where social distancing or shelter in place orders have been enforced.
  • We have seen a very significant spike in Teams usage, and now have more than 44 million daily users. Those users generated over 900 million meeting and calling minutes on Teams daily in a single week. You can read more about Teams data here.
  • Windows Virtual Desktop usage has grown more than 3x.

If you want to know more, you can read the full blog post here: Update #2 on Microsoft cloud services continuity


New 5G customer scenarios with Azure Edge Zones

Last week, the Azure Networking team announcing transformative advances to combine the power of Azure, 5G, carriers, and technology partners around the world to enable new scenarios for developers, customers, and partners, with the preview of Azure Edge Zones.


Azure Edge ZonesAzure Edge Zones

Azure Edge Zones are local extensions of Azure that are ideal for solving compute, storage, and service availability issues by allowing you to provide experience-driven resources closer to your customers—using the technology that you already have. Azure Edge Zones are available through Azure, with select carriers and operators, or as private customer zones.


General availability of new Azure disk sizes and bursting

The Azure Storage team just announced the general availability of new Azure disk sizes, including 4, 8, and 16 GiB on both Premium and Standard SSDs, as well as bursting support on Azure Premium SSD Disks. With bursting, even the smallest Premium SSD disks (4 GiB) can now achieve up to 3,500 input/output operations per second (IOPS) and 170 MiB/second. Disk bursting is offered on a credit-based system. You accumulate credits when traffic is below the provisioned target, and you consume credit when traffic exceeds it. It can be best-leveraged for OS disks to accelerate virtual machine (VM) boot or data disks to accommodate spiky traffic.


To read more about how disk bursting works, refer to this Premium SSD bursting article. You can read the full announcement blog with even more information about new Azure Disks here.



I wish you a good weekend, and I hope this short blog post provided you with some exciting news from this week. I know there is much more than just the things I listed here. I recommend that you follow the Azure announcements blog. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment. 


Also, check out last week's Az Update here.

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‎Apr 03 2020 04:28 AM
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