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What’s on Azure right now?

Published 18 January 2011 3:10 pm

If you speak to Microsoft, they’ll give you a number of active accounts, but what are those accounts actually running? It could be a collection of Hello World ASP.NET sites, or perhaps small exciting web start-ups, or maybe even the beginnings of large corporate moves to the cloud! I guess what I really wanted to know was who is using Azure but that’s a much harder question to answer, so we’ll stick to what for now.

My super awesome comrade Theo Spears attempted to answer this by trawling every IP address in the Azure public range, and trying to pull down the source of the opening HTML page. The results were interesting:

There were 118,528 public Azure IP addresses that were hit and from these came 8,044 http sites that were up and running; meaning that out of that batch of public IP’s as many as 6.8% were running an http site that could be trawled.

At the end of the process there was a lot of info to sift through, but sites found included:


Pretty interesting for a few years of operation. This certainly doesn’t paint a picture of runaway success, but then I don’t think I’ve ever heard Microsoft push that. What they have tried to push is an awareness and adoption of Platform as a Service, and I guess only time will tell if their push will be successful. With the recent high profile purchase of Heroku and growing appreciation of the benefits of PaaS maybe those numbers will look different in a year’s time.

9 Responses to “What’s on Azure right now?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I wonder what the 93,2% are running – this might be backends for other (web) services?

  2. RobbieT says:

    Could be yes, those sites were only the ones that responded to an HTTP request so I bet you’re right and some are just running non HTTP roles.

    It would be interesting to know how many of the others are being utilised for such things.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Oh, and btw: in my opinion it is a PITA to develop for azure. Local cloud behave differently from the real thing, upload & activation takes ages and so on.

  4. RobbieT says:

    You’re definitely right about the upload and activation. I hear they’re trying to improve it but when I last looked it took about 25 minutes before I could see my site. On AppEngine/Heroku it was much quicker.

    I’m also not completely cool with staging costing me money, I understand it uses resources but I think the name is misleading. I’d rather you could make it more like a version queue.

  5. theo.spears says:

    In comparison, AWS has about 550k public IP addresses.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Hey, at least Azure has that cool Pirates love Daisies game!

  7. Anonymous says:

    That’s because anyone who wants to do .NET websites/webapps in the cloud is using AWS. The problem with a MS cloud solution is that you have to “go all in” on MS tech. I think people prefer the flexibility of AWS. Plus AWS is just simply a great product with great documentation and user experience.

  8. RobbieT says:

    I think right now it’s hard to disagree, the luxury of MS PaaS is probably not worth the lock-in.

    I really enjoy using AWS, it’s a great collection of developer features and easy to get into. BeanStalk has the potential (with a bit more platform support) to be pretty cool.

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