Latest Azure News: Outage; PowerShell in Azure Functions; Azure Machine Learning; API for FHIR; Channel insights

May 10 2019

Outages made headlines in the first week of May, while it was a comparatively quiet for new announcements from Microsoft. On May 2, a large scale disruption blocked access to Azure, Office 365, SharePoint, OneDrive, Teams, Power BI, Dynamics 365 and other systems. Support teams pinned the issue to a DNS problem and resolved it within about two hours for most users.

According to Eamon O'Reilly, principal program manager for Azure Functions, customers have routinely requested PowerShell support in Functions—a request that Microsoft honored. The new capability, in-preview, is intended to help operationalize and automate tasks. The PowerShell support uses PowerShell Core 6, natively integrated with Application Insights. The new options also include Portal and VS Code integration, integrated security, hybrid connection and VNet support, automatic Azure module management and authentication against Azure services.

Venky Veeraghavan, group program manager for Azure touched on new Azure Machine Learning updates in connection with Microsoft Build 2019. An automated machine learning interface in preview helps with training ML models without writing code, while the visual interface is intended to support planning, scaling, version control and security. Additionally, users have access to new Azure DevOps extensions and hosted notebooks tied into the Machine Learning Python SDK.

In connection with the HIMMS 2019 conference in March, Microsoft premiered the Azure API for FHIR. The team now maintains a GitHub repository with sample apps, including patient dashboard apps. An Azure Function will load patient data produced with Synthea into FHIR or SMART apps.


Advanced Threat Protection is now a part of the Azure Storage offering, detecting anomalous behavior and illegitimate attempts to access storage accounts.

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