In a previous post I introduced you to the Azure Marketplace where you can deploy solutions or publish your own for free for for a fee. The Azure MarketPlace uses the Azure Resource Manager technology to programatically define these deployments however even if you don’t intend to publish in the MarketPlace it’s still handy to define your own infrastructure for dev, test and production setups.
To understand the Azure Marketplace let’s start with the Virtual Machine Gallery and a tale of two portals.
The Virtual Machine Gallery allows you to quickly and easily deploy a Virtual Machine running your desired operating system (OS) such as Windows Server or a Linux distro such as Ubuntu, Suse etc. It also allows you to deploy a Virtual Machine pre-configured with a workload such as Visual Studio, SQL Server, SharePoint (trial), BizTalk, Puppet and more.
The key point here is that is makes it easy to deploy a single pre-configured Virtual Machine image.
What powers this? Something called Service Management API which internally uses “RDFE” which stands for RedDog Front End (RedDog being the code name for Azure back in the day).