"Often when I talk to developers, they tell me they can never find anything on Microsoft’s websites. “It’s too big” or “it’s too complicated.” “Stuff gets buried”. And on and on, and so forth…
Having been here a while, I can testify to the truth of that. Luckily, the advent of search engines like Google & Bing make this a little less of an issue (if you know what you’re looking for).
But, it would be nice to have an easy to navigate guide to the Microsoft Universe handy. With over 90K employees, a gazillion products, and product websites, keep dreaming! It’s just not going to happen.
Although, in December, the new WindowsAzure.com website took a pretty good stab at the problem. The new site re-organized all of the Azure documentation into one place that makes it easier to navigate and surface various content. This includes the new Developer Centers I wrote about recently. Kudos to the Azure team on that!
But, as good as the site overhaul is, there is still good stuff that gets buried. Every now and then, you find a gem via Google or Bing and then the next thing you know, you’re hot on the trail of good information like Fred and Velma connecting all the dots at the end of a Scooby Doo episode! You bookmark the gem, and then look for similar content from the author or the location it is published.
Zoinks Scoob!!! Real World Azure Guidance?! That sounds cool. I thought, “What else is around here?” and navigated up a level. That tipped me off to a whole treasure trove of ‘top secret’ Windows Azure documents. Really impressive stuff in there, like:
As I navigated through each of these topic areas, I felt like Julian Assange stumbling upon something I wasn’t meant to see, and now it’s my job to tell the world about it! Except, I think I was meant to see it?
You see, there’s nothing “secret” about these documents at all! They’re all publicly available documents buried within the bowels of MSDN. Not sure why they’ve been hidden away like top secret sensitive information, but hopefully this post can shine a little light on them!
"Updated: December 9, 2011
Welcome to Real World Windows Azure Guidance.
In this section, find valuable and interesting articles based on the real world experience of Microsoft customers developing applications for Windows Azure. These articles are written by members of the community, who have developed subject matter expertise working with Windows Azure.
Another place to look for Azure information if you're wondering about it and the "real world" (i.e. beyond demo-ware)