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How to create an Azure VM in Microsoft Azure Cloud?


In today’s digital age, cloud computing has become an integral part of businesses and organizations worldwide. Microsoft Azure Cloud offers a wide range of services and solutions to meet the growing demands of the industry. One of the fundamental aspects of Azure Cloud is creating and managing virtual machines (VMs). In this article, we will delve into the detailed steps of creating an Azure VM in Microsoft Azure Cloud, providing you with a comprehensive guide to get started.

1. Overview of Microsoft Azure Cloud  

Microsoft Azure Cloud is a robust and scalable cloud computing platform that provides a wide range of services to help businesses build, deploy, and manage applications and services through Microsoft-managed data centers. It offers various cloud services, including virtual machines, storage, databases, networking, and much more. Azure provides a flexible and cost-effective solution for businesses of all sizes, enabling them to leverage the power of the cloud and accelerate their digital transformation journey.

2. Understanding Virtual Machines (VMs)  

Virtual Machines (VMs) are an essential component of cloud computing. They enable users to run multiple operating systems and applications on a single physical server. Azure VMs offer the same functionality as traditional on-premises servers but with the added benefits of scalability, flexibility, and ease of management. With Azure VMs, you can quickly provision new servers, scale up or down based on demand, and manage your infrastructure efficiently.

3. Prerequisites for Creating an Azure VM  

Before creating an Azure VM, there are a few prerequisites you need to fulfill:

Subscription and Azure Portal Access  

To create an Azure VM, you must have an active Azure subscription. If you don’t have one, you can sign up for a free trial or purchase a subscription from the Azure website. Once you have a subscription, you can access the Azure Portal, which is a web-based interface for managing your Azure resources.

Resource Group  

Azure resources are organized into logical containers called resource groups. Before creating a VM, you need to have a resource group created or select an existing one to host your VM.

Virtual Network  

A virtual network is a fundamental building block for your Azure infrastructure. You need to have a virtual network set up or choose an existing one to connect your VM to.

Storage Account  

Azure VMs require a storage account to store the virtual hard disks (VHDs) associated with the VM. You should have a storage account created or select an existing one.

4. Step-by-Step Guide to Create an Azure VM  

Now let’s dive into the step-by-step process of creating an Azure VM in Microsoft Azure Cloud:

Step 1: Sign in to the Azure Portal  

  1. Open a web browser and navigate to the Azure Portal.
  2. Sign in using your Azure account credentials.

Step 2: Create a Virtual Machine  

  1. Once you are logged in to the Azure Portal, click on the Create a resource button.
  2. In the search bar, type “Windows Server” or “Linux” depending on your preference for the VM operating system.
  3. Select the desired Windows Server or Linux version from the available options.
  4. Click on the Create button to start the VM creation process.

Step 3: Configure VM Settings  

  1. In the Basics tab, provide the required information, such as the VM name, username, password, subscription, resource group, and virtual network.
  2. Choose the VM size based on your requirements.
  3. Configure additional settings like public IP address, disk type, and availability options.
  4. Review the settings, and then click on the Next button.

Step 4: Configure Networking  

  1. In the Networking tab, configure the network settings for your VM.
  2. Select the virtual network and subnet to connect the VM to.
  3. Choose the appropriate network security group (NSG) rules for inbound and outbound traffic.
  4. Review the settings, and then click on the Next button.

Step 5: Review and Create  

  1. In the Management tab, configure the monitoring and management options for your VM.
  2. Enable desired monitoring and diagnostic settings.
  3. Configure auto-shutdown and backup options if needed.
  4. Review the settings, and then click on the Review + create button.

Step 6: Create the VM  

  1. Review the summary of the VM configuration.
  2. Click on the Create button to start the VM creation process.
  3. Wait for the deployment to complete.

Congratulations! You have successfully created an Azure VM in Microsoft Azure Cloud.

5. Configuring Azure VM Settings  

Once the Azure VM is created, you can configure various settings to optimize its performance and manageability. Here are some essential configurations to consider:

Remote Desktop Connection  

To access your Windows-based Azure VM, you can use Remote Desktop Connection (RDP). Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Remote Desktop client on your local machine.
  2. Enter the public IP address of your Azure VM.
  3. Provide the username and password used during VM creation.
  4. Click Connect to establish the remote desktop connection.

SSH Connection (Linux VMs)  

For Linux-based Azure VMs, you can connect via SSH (Secure Shell). Use the following command in a terminal or SSH client:


Network Security Groups (NSGs)  

Network Security Groups (NSGs) control inbound and outbound traffic to your Azure VM. You can define rules to allow or deny specific types of traffic based on source IP, destination IP, port number, and protocol. To configure NSG rules:

  1. Go to the Azure Portal and navigate to your VM’s Networking settings.
  2. Click on the associated NSG.
  3. Add or modify the inbound and outbound rules as needed.

Disk Management  

Azure VMs use virtual hard disks (VHDs) to store the operating system, applications, and data. You can manage disks by:

  1. Adding additional data disks to increase storage capacity.
  2. Enabling managed disks for simplified management and scalability.
  3. Configuring disk caching options for improved performance.

6. Managing Azure VMs  

Azure provides several tools and services to manage your VMs effectively. Here are some essential management tasks:

Start/Stop VMs  

To start or stop an Azure VM:

  1. Go to the Azure Portal and navigate to your VM.
  2. Click the Start or Stop button in the VM overview blade.

Resize VMs  

You can resize an Azure VM to meet changing workload demands. Follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Azure Portal and navigate to your VM.
  2. Click the Size option in the VM overview blade.
  3. Select the desired VM size from the available options.

Azure VM Extensions  

Azure VM extensions are small applications that provide additional functionality to your VMs. Some commonly used extensions include:

  • Custom Script Extension: Executes scripts inside the VM during provisioning.
  • Diagnostics Extension: Collects monitoring data from the VM.
  • Azure Monitoring Agent: Enables deeper monitoring and diagnostics.
  • Azure Security Agent: Provides enhanced security features.

7. Monitoring and Optimizing Azure VM Performance  

Monitoring and optimizing the performance of your Azure VMs is crucial for maintaining optimal operation. Here are some tips to consider:

Azure Monitor  

Azure Monitor helps you collect, analyze, and act on telemetry data from your Azure VMs. It provides insights into VM performance, availability, and resource utilization. Use Azure Monitor to:

  • Set up alerts for critical VM metrics.
  • Create custom dashboards to visualize performance data.
  • Utilize Log Analytics for advanced analysis and troubleshooting.


Azure VMs can be configured for autoscaling, which automatically adjusts the number of VM instances based on workload demands. By enabling autoscaling, you can ensure optimal performance while minimizing costs during periods of low utilization.

Load Balancing  

Load balancing distributes network traffic across multiple VMs to enhance performance and improve availability. Azure provides various load balancing options, such as Azure Load Balancer and Application Gateway, to ensure efficient traffic distribution to your VMs.

8. Azure VM Security Best Practices  

Securing your Azure VMs is essential to protect your data and applications. Here are some security best practices to follow:

Network Security Groups (NSGs)  

Implement proper NSG rules to control inbound and outbound traffic to your VMs. Restrict access to only necessary ports and protocols.

Just-In-Time (JIT) Access  

Azure provides Just-In-Time (JIT) access to your VMs, which reduces the attack surface by allowing inbound access only when needed. Enable JIT access and define the allowed ports and duration for access.

Azure Security Center  

Azure Security Center provides a unified view of the security posture of your Azure resources, including VMs. It offers recommendations and threat intelligence to help you identify and mitigate security risks effectively.

9. Troubleshooting Azure VM Issues  

Occasionally, you may encounter issues with your Azure VMs. Here are some common troubleshooting steps:

Review Azure Activity Logs  

Azure Activity Logs provide insights into the operations performed on your resources. Check the logs for any errors or unexpected behavior related to your VMs.

Diagnostic Logs  

Enable diagnostic logs for your VMs to capture detailed information about their performance, connectivity, and system events. Analyze the logs to identify and troubleshoot any issues.

Azure Support  

If you are unable to resolve an issue on your own, don’t hesitate to reach out to Azure Support. They can assist you in troubleshooting and resolving complex problems related to your VMs.

10. Migrating Existing VMs to Azure Cloud  

If you have existing virtual machines running on-premises or in other cloud environments, Azure provides several migration options:

Azure Site Recovery  

Azure Site Recovery enables you to replicate and migrate virtual machines to Azure easily. It supports both VMware and Hyper-V environments, allowing seamless migration without significant downtime.

Azure Migrate  

Azure Migrate is a comprehensive migration toolset that helps you assess, plan, and migrate your workloads to Azure. It provides an end-to-end migration solution for both VMs and physical servers.

11. Azure VM Backup and Disaster Recovery  

Ensuring data protection and business continuity is crucial. Azure offers robust backup and disaster recovery solutions for Azure VMs:

Azure Backup  

Azure Backup provides an efficient and cost-effective way to protect your VMs’ data. It allows you to create backup policies, perform scheduled backups, and restore data when needed.

Azure Site Recovery  

In addition to migration, Azure Site Recovery also offers disaster recovery capabilities. It replicates your VMs to a secondary Azure region, allowing for seamless failover and failback in case of a disaster.

12. Cost Management for Azure VMs  

Managing costs is an important aspect of using Azure VMs. Here are some tips to optimize cost efficiency:

Right-Sizing VMs  

Regularly monitor your VMs’ resource utilization and consider resizing them to match the workload demands accurately. Downsizing underutilized VMs can lead to significant cost savings.

Reserved Instances  

Azure offers Reserved Instances, which allow you to pre-purchase VM instances for one or three years at a discounted rate. By committing to long-term usage, you can save costs compared to on-demand pricing.

Azure Cost Management and Billing  

Utilize the Azure Cost Management and Billing service to monitor, analyze, and optimize your Azure spending. It provides insights into cost drivers, recommendations for cost savings, and budgeting capabilities.

13. Conclusion  

Creating an Azure VM in Microsoft Azure Cloud is a fundamental step towards leveraging the power of cloud computing. In this article, we explored the detailed process of creating an Azure VM, along with various configuration options and management tasks. We also discussed performance optimization, security best practices, troubleshooting steps, and migration options. By following the guidelines and best practices provided, you can confidently create and manage Azure VMs to meet your organization’s needs in a secure and efficient manner.

14. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)  

Q1: How can I access my Azure VM after creation?  

A1: For Windows-based VMs, you can use Remote Desktop Connection (RDP) using the public IP address. For Linux-based VMs, you can connect via SSH.

Q2: Can I resize my Azure VM after creation?  

A2: Yes, you can resize your Azure VM to meet changing workload demands. Navigate to the VM settings and select the desired size.

Q3: What is a Network Security Group (NSG)?  

A3: A Network Security Group (NSG) is a firewall that controls inbound and outbound traffic to your VMs in Azure. You can define rules to allow or deny specific types of traffic.

Q4: How can I monitor the performance of my Azure VM?  

A4: Azure Monitor provides insights into VM performance, availability, and resource utilization. It allows you to set up alerts, create custom dashboards, and analyze performance data.

Q5: What are the best practices for securing Azure VMs?  

A5: Some best practices include implementing proper NSG rules, enabling Just-In-Time (JIT) access, and utilizing Azure Security Center for threat intelligence and recommendations.

Q6: How can I migrate my existing VMs to Azure?  

A6: Azure Site Recovery and Azure Migrate are two options for migrating existing VMs to Azure. They provide comprehensive migration solutions for different scenarios.

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