Enable Soft-delete for Key Vault to be able to recover from disaster, recover keys, secrets, certificates or the whole Key Vault on accedental deletion.
Last week we had an incident in which we had deleted the wrong secret from our Azure Key Vault. After some research we found that it could have been recovered if we had used the Soft-delete in Key Vault. However, we did not know about this option and could not recover the item.
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Creating multiple blobs, move/rename blobs and delete blobs with advanced runtime bindings in Azure Functions.
The standard input and output bindings in Azure Functions are written in a declarative pattern using the function.json. When defining input and output declarative, you do not have the option to change some of the bindings properties like the name or make multiple outputs from one input. An imperative binding can do this for you. In this blog post I’ll show how to use imperative blob bindings.
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Create a VSTS release pipeline for Azure Functions
Azure Functions enable you to easily run small pieces of code in the cloud. To do this right, you need to setup continuous delivery of the infrastructure and the code involved. Otherwise you will end with an uncontrolled environment where nobody knows what code is actually running. In this blog post I’ll describe how to setup a deployment pipeline for Functions with VSTS. This will enable you to deploy Functions as Infrastructure as Code.
From an deployment perspective an Azure Function contains of two parts:
- Azure infrastructure
- Function code
Both the ARM template and the code can be deployed from VSTS. By doing this, you can manage functions like any other Azure resource.
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Remove locks from azure resources to be able to change or delete them
In my previous blog post Lock Azure resources to prevent accidental deletion, I showed how to add a lock to a resource with an ARM template to protect it from accidental deletion. When you want to delete the resource, you first need to remove the lock. A lock cannot be removed with an ARM template. To remove the lock you can use:
- Rest API
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How a lock can prevent user from accidental deletion of a resource.
In some cases you want to protect critical resources from accidental deletion. Some examples are a storage account with source data for processing, a Key Vault with disk encryption keys, or another key component in your infrastructure. When losing some resources that are key in your infrastructure, recovery can be dramatic. Resource Manager locks will enable you to protect these critical resources from deletion.
Resource Manager locks
Resource Manager locks apply to the management function of the locked resources. The locks do not have any impact the normal functions of the resource. You have two possible types of locks on a resource:
Locking down a resource can save your contributors from accidently delete a critical resources. An ‘oeps… I deleted the wrong resources’ moment should be a thing of the past.
CannotDelete means authorized users can still read and modify a resource, but they can’t delete the resource.
ReadOnly means authorized users can read a resource, but they can’t delete or update the resource. Applying this lock is similar to restricting all authorized users to the permissions granted by the Reader role.
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Your team is in the process of developing a new application feature, and the infrastructure has to be adapted. The first step is to change a file in your source control system that describes your infrastructure. When the changed definition file is saved in your source control system, it triggers a new build and release. Your new infrastructure is deployed to your test environment, and the whole process to get the new infrastructure deployed took minutes while you only changed a definition file and you did not touch the infrastructure itself.
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When testing deployment of resources in release pipelines, the resource groups need to be cleaned after you are done testing the deployment of the resources. In many scenarios you do not want or have no rights to remove the resource group it self. For removing the resources in the resource group you can use the VSTS task clean resources. This tasks removes all resources in a resource group.
Keep your deployment secret secure in the key vault when using ARM templates to deploy into Azure
When creating new resource in Azure that have secrets like passwords or ssl certificates you can securely save them in the Key Vault and get them from the Key Vault when you deploy. Only the people who need access to the secrets can read and write them to the Key Vault. In a infrastructure as code scenario the secrets are supplied when deploying your templates to Azure. The code it self will be free of secrets.
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When creating reusable ARM templates you have a number of options on how to manage conditional parts in your templates. The smallest conditions can be done by parameters, medium differences can be done by t-shirt sizes and large differences by linked templates. In this blog post I’ll show how to use implement conditions by linked templates.
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Protect your data at rest with disk encryption on Linux VMs and deploying them as Infrastructure as Code.