Step-by-Step Azure Stack HCI Installation Guide
Azure Master Class
Jan 9, 2024 3:30 PM

Step-by-Step Azure Stack HCI Installation Guide

by HubSite 365 about John Savill's [MVP]

Principal Cloud Solutions Architect

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Master Azure Stack HCI Deployment: From Setup to VM Creation & AKS Integration!

Key insights

 

Complete Azure Stack HCI Install! A thorough guide to deploy an Azure Stack HCI cluster, covering all steps from the beginning to the end!

  • Introduction to Azure Stack HCI: Azure Stack HCI is a robust hyperconverged infrastructure solution for streamlining on-premises architectures and tapping into cloud services. It merges compute, storage, networking into a unified and resilient platform.

  • Key Benefits: The solution promotes simplicity by unifying key resources, enhancing scalability to adjust to business needs, and ensuring high availability. It offers hybrid cloud capabilities, bridging on-premises infrastructure with Azure.

  • Use Cases: Azure Stack HCI is ideal for virtual desktop infrastructures (VDI), server virtualization, application hosting, and supporting remote/branch office (ROBO) environments due to its ease of management and cloud integration.

Overall, Azure Stack HCI delivers a reliable and adaptable infrastructure solution that can simplify and modernize on-premises solutions and provide access to cloud services, making it well-suited for all sizes of organizations looking to enhance their IT infrastructure.

A Deeper Dive into Azure Stack HCI

Azure Stack HCI streamlines datacenter operations by converging multiple layers of technology into a single cohesive unit. It is an extension of the Windows Server operating system, designed to run on a wide range of industry-standard hardware, eliminating vendor lock-in and allowing users to leverage existing investments. With its inherent capabilities, it provides a pathway to hybrid integration, which means organizations can choose where to run their applications based on performance, regulatory, or operational criteria, be it on-premises or in Azure. It's particularly useful in scenarios where latency, regulatory requirements, or connectivity concerns dictate the need for local data processing.

The adoption of Azure Stack HCI can lead to significant cost savings due to the reduction in physical hardware and improved operations efficiency. It's not only about bringing the infrastructure components together but also about optimizing them so that they work better collectively than they would separately. For IT decision-makers looking to refresh their data centers or extend their operations with minimal disruption, Azure Stack HCI represents a strategic avenue to embrace the benefits of cloud computing while maintaining control over their IT environment.

 

Complete Azure Stack HCI Install! A full run through of deploying an Azure Stack HCI cluster from start to finish!

00:00 - Introduction
02:40 - Active Directory preparation
05:44 - Node configuration

06:46 - Installing Arc on the nodes
06:47 - Installing Arc on the nodes
09:55 - Last ever touch of the nodes

12:33 - HCI Cluster creation
22:05 - Pre-create validation
23:54 - Cluster creation progress

24:48 - Post creation steps
25:39 - Default storage paths
25:57 - Adding images

27:22 - Adding logical networks
29:50 - Creating a VM
33:05 - Adding AKS

33:42 - Summary and close
35:38 - My finished VM

Azure Stack HCI is a hyperconverged infrastructure solution that lets you bring together your on-site infrastructure. It simplifies management and connects to cloud services. It merges your servers' compute, storage, and networking into one dependable and scalable platform.

  • Simplicity: Azure Stack HCI streamlines managing infrastructure by merging various resources into a single platform. It reduces management complexity and aids in easy deployment and maintenance.
  • Scalability: Azure Stack HCI's flexibility lets you adjust the size of your setup as your business needs change. It supports workload virtualization and uses the cloud's scalability.
  • High Availability: Azure Stack HCI is built to be always on, using redundant parts to cover failures. This keeps your apps up and running, maintaining your business operations.
  • Hybrid Cloud: Azure Stack HCI works well with Azure DataCenter, linking your local setup to the cloud. It allows you to manage workloads both on-site and in the cloud and shift them as needed.

Use cases for Azure Stack HCI:

  • Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI): Azure Stack HCI is excellent for VDI due to its scalability and availability. It gives users a consistent experience and supports many users.
  • Server Virtualization: It's a strong option for consolidating servers, saving you money and enhancing performance and scalability.
  • Application Hosting: Azure Stack HCI is good for hosting high-demand apps like Dynamics CRM and ensures they are always available.
  • Remote Office/Branch Office (ROBO): It's ideal for ROBO scenarios for its simplicity and cloud connectivity, which allows centralized management.

In summary, Azure Stack HCI is a versatile and robust infrastructure solution that simplifies, enhances, and connects your local infrastructure to the cloud. It suits organizations of different sizes looking to advance their IT infrastructure and leverage cloud services.

A General Overview of Azure Stack HCI

Azure Stack HCI represents a significant advancement in how businesses can operate efficiently and leverage hybrid cloud technologies. As a blend of on-premises datacenter resources with cloud integration, it offers an optimal environment for handling various workloads, including virtual machines (VMs), containerized apps, and even traditional server roles. Its seamless integration with services like Compute & Containers provides extended capabilities for management and governance across cloud and on-premises assets, giving IT departments the agility and flexibility needed to meet the evolving demands of modern business. For those exploring options to evolve their infrastructure, Azure Stack HCI stands out as an adaptable, high-availability solution that reaches beyond traditional data center limitations to embrace the versatility and scalability of the cloud.

 

Azure Stack HCI Advantages

Azure Stack HCI simplifies infrastructure management, reducing the complexity of system administration. This simplification is achieved by unifying compute, storage, and networking resources. It's a less complicated solution that streamlines the deployment, configuration, and maintenance of server environments.

The Azure Master Class infrastructure is also designed for both vertical and horizontal scaling. This scaling ability is crucial for businesses seeking flexibility in IT resources. Furthermore, its ability to foster high availability means reduced risk of downtime and improved business continuity.

With hybrid cloud capabilities, Azure Stack HCI bridges on-premises and cloud infrastructures, facilitating seamless workload transitions. This integration proves valuable for a variety of applications within different organizational structures and needs.

Real-world applications of Azure Master Class infrastructure include Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), server virtualization, and application hosting. VDI offers a uniform user experience, while server virtualization concentrates workloads to reduce costs. Azure Master Class infrastructure supports robust, scalable application hosting.

Remote offices and branch office environments also benefit from Azure Stack HCI's simplicity and ease of management. It enables centralized infrastructure oversight and integrates ROBO setups with cloud services. This ensures efficient, cloud-enabled operations across dispersed locations.

In summary, Azure Stack HCI embodies a comprehensive solution for on-premises infrastructure modernization. Whether simplifying existing setups or extending capabilities into cloud services, it's an invaluable choice for various enterprise sizes aiming to enhance their IT infrastructure. Note that there is no image shown due to the guideline restrictions.

Expanding on Azure Stack HCI

The Azure Stack HCI is an important development in the world of information technology, offering a blend of on-premises hardware and cloud-based services. It’s a key solution for businesses striving to evolve their IT infrastructures, ensuring they stay competitive in a rapidly changing digital landscape. This flexible platform not only caters to current technological needs but also paves the way for future growth and scalability. By allowing for such efficient integration with cloud services, Azure Stack HCI demonstrates Microsoft's commitment to hybrid infrastructures, balancing local control with cloud innovation.

 

Azure Master Class - Step-by-Step Azure Stack HCI Installation Guide

 

Read the full article Complete Azure Stack HCI Install!

 

People also ask

How do I create an Azure stack HCI cluster?

To create an Azure Stack HCI cluster, start by setting up compatible hardware according to Microsoft's guidelines. Install the Azure Stack HCI operating system on each server envisaged for the cluster. Once the OS is installed, configure network settings and validate the hardware using Windows Admin Center or PowerShell tools. Afterwards, create the cluster by joining each node using clustering commands or through the Windows Admin Center interface. Complete the process by configuring cluster settings and integrating it with Azure services for management and monitoring purposes.

What is the difference between Azure stack and Azure stack HCI?

The key difference between Azure Stack and Azure Stack HCI is that Azure Stack is an integrated hardware and software solution that brings Azure Cloud services to on-premises environments, enabling a consistent hybrid cloud platform. Azure Stack HCI, on the other hand, is a hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) solution optimized for virtualized workloads, leveraging the same technologies but focusing on providing highly available, high-performance storage and computing services without the full Azure platform integration out of the box.

Is Azure Stack HCI free?

Azure Stack HCI is not free; it requires a subscription-based license. Customers must purchase the Azure Stack HCI operating system as part of a subscription service, which includes access to Azure support and enables hybrid services with Azure. However, Microsoft may offer trial periods or incentives that allow temporary cost-free evaluation of the service.

What is the full form of HCI in Azure?

The full form of HCI in Azure stands for Hyper-Converged Infrastructure. Azure Stack HCI is a solution that combines compute, storage, and networking on highly available, software-defined infrastructure/platform designed to run virtualized applications on premises while connecting to Azure for hybrid capabilities.

 

Keywords

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