20533 Lab Tips and Tricks

20533 Lab Notes

Note: I am working through the detailed lab answer key files, not the lab instructions integrated into the modules themselves. Those instructions are so slight, I anticipate that many/most students will have to primarily use the lab answer keys to successfully complete the labs.

There is no mention that the setup.cmd script needs to be executed prior to starting each lab. It is assumed that the students have been doing each demonstration in the main course notes. This is not a safe assumption. The instructors will need to remind users to run the appropriate setup.cmd for each module, or HynesiTe can put a Note alongside each manual with this instruction. The script is found inside the VM at the following path: D:\Labfiles\<ModXX>\Starter\setup.cmd. <ModXX> will be the id for each lab, Mod01, Mod02 etc. The script should be run as administrator. (Right-Click, Run as Administrator)

The “localized” Microsoft ID logon issue is still an issue across the course. We will need to make sure we communicate the workaround (or at least be aware of the situation and how to deal with it). The issue is that the organization logon pages that Azure uses automatically detect certain email domains as being Microsoft IDs, and automatically redirect to the Microsoft ID logon pages when they detect them. Not all Microsoft ID domains are recognized, specifically we’ve noticed that localized Outlook.com domains (i.e. Outlook.co.xx) aren’t recognized as Microsoft IDs, so the required page redirection doesn’t occur. Either we need to make sure that the Microsoft IDs that students use end in Outlook.com, or make them aware that if they are using localized Microsoft IDs, then when prompted for the initial organization logon pages, they will need to type in an email address that ends in @Outlook.com and then hit TAB. This will trigger the page redirection to the Microsoft ID logon page, at which point they can type in their outlook.co.xx logon name and password and log on to their Azure account.


Lab 1, Introduction to Azure:

  • For consistency sake, when prompted to choose a region, unless otherwise specifically instructed to do so, choose West US.
  • Depending on screen resolution you may need to scroll up and down the startboard to find the objects you need to click on.



Lab 2, Implement and Manage Virtual Networks

In both Lab 2 and Lab 3 there is a fair amount of “wait for 20 minutes for this task to complete” in the labs, especially around VM creation and network connection creation. We will want to make students aware of this in advance.

Exercise 2, Task 1, Step 5: If you’re using an azure pass, the file name will be “Azure Pass-mm-dd-yyyy-credentials.publishsettings”. Other trials may have slightly different name structures. It’s not important, just note what the name actually is for later.

Ex 2, Task 1, Step 7: You can make it easier if you type “~\desktop\” and then use tab complete to get to the publishsettings file.

Ex 2, Task 3, Step 3: This will likely fail as the image file referenced in the script no longer exists. To fix:

  1. Open the PowerShell ISE and run this powershell command: Get-AzureVMImage | where-object { $_.Label -like “Windows*” } | where { $_.Location.Split(“;”) -contains “West US”} | Sort-Object -Property PublishedDate | Format-List PublishedDate, Label, ImageName

In the results, find the ImageName for the Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter image.

  1. Now open the d:\labfiles\Mod02\starter\createvirtualmachines.ps1 powershell script in the PowerShell ISE.
  2. Replace the value of the $winimage variable with the ImageName you located earlier. You can copy and paste this. The new line will look something similar to this:

$winimage = ‘a699494373c04fc0bc8f2bb1389d6106_Windows-Server-2012-R2-201409.01-en.us-127GB.vhd’

  1. Save the changed script. Now you can run the script as indicated in step 3.

The lab manual says it may take 15-20 minutes. I found it take a bit over 20 minutes. And there are some long periods where it doesn’t look like anything is happening. Stuff is, just in the background. In other words, don’t panic. If it’s not throwing red at you, all is well.

Ex 3, Task 1, Step 29: 20-25 minutes for vnet gateways to be created. Be patient.



Lab 3, Implementing Virtual Machines:

In both Lab 2 and Lab 3 there is a fair amount of “wait for 20 minutes for this task to complete” in the labs, especially around VM creation and network connection creation. We will want to make students aware of this in advance.

Ex 1, Task 1, Step 19: If the creation fails using the preview portal more than once, attempt using the standard portal. It appears there may be a bug in the preview portal. I was able to create a VM using the standard portal, as well as powershell. I came back later and tried again, but this time chose to use a resource group that already existed, rather than having it create a resource group (which is what it was defaulting to). This was not successful. Given that I can create the vms in all other management tools, this appears to be a preview portal bug.

Ex 1, Task2, Step 7: This name of the storage account is c20533alab3store2, not what is indicated in the manual.

Ex 1, Task 2, Step 11: Make sure you use single quotes around the password string. If you use double quotes the cmdlet will fail because the dollar signs aren’t handled properly.

Ex 2, Task 1, Step 6: Use the image name from the list of images that is the closest match to the name in the manual. There is a slightly newer image, and it has a slightly different name.




Lab 4, Managing Virtual Machines

Ex 1, Task 1, Step 3: It says it may take 30 minutes for the setup script to run. It took mine approximately 45 minutes.


Ex 1, Task 3, Step 18: This failed the first time I did it. With an authentication error. I went to the Storage node, and navigated to the 1-azure-storage container, and edited the properties to allow anonymous access to the blob, and retried from the start of Task 3. It was successful.


Ex 1, Task 3, Step 32: This failed the first two times I attempted it, with a message reading “Failed to detach disk from the virtual machine ‘WebVM2’. Authentication failed. The ‘Authorization’ header is not present or provided in an invalid format. This is the same message I got at Step 18. Perhaps the anonymous settings were merely coincidental. It could be a preview portal issue. Third time was a charm for the detach. I changed no configurations. This is more a heads up that this could occur.

Ex 1, Task 3, Step 43: Attaching the second disk failed the first two attempts, with the same errors indicated earlier.. Succeeded on the third. This seems to be a pattern.

Ex 2, Task 2, Step 17: Wait until the AdatumWebLBS shows up in the “Load Balanced Sets” blade before closing the blade.

Ex 2, Task 2, Step 24: If joining the existing AdatumWebLBS load balanced set, wait 1 minute then try steps 19-23 again. When the “Load balanced sets” tile on the WebVM2 blade shows “1” you can proceed.



Lab 5: Implementing Websites

In the lab setup notes that are in the lecture notes, but not in the detailed answer keys there is this instruction on how to create your own globally unique number. We will need to address this for the MSInvolve delivery. The pattern they recommend is as follows:

<course number><date><CPLS number><student seat number>

It is referenced first in Ex 1, Task3, Step 2.

Except that won’t work because it has to start with a letter. I’d recommend we go with this:

auldhouse20533S001 i.e. auldhouse<course number>S<student number> I’d make the student numbers a 3 digit number.

Ex 4, Task4, Step 14: You should disable the endpoint that was returned in the nslookup you did is step 8, it may not be the first endpoint.




Lab 6: Planning and Implementing Storage.

Before you start this lab: Ensure that the Windows Azure Files preview feature is activated for your account. To do this, do the following:

In Internet Explorer go to https://account.windowsazure.com/PreviewFeatures. Log on with the Microsoft ID associated with your Azure subscription.

Scroll down until you see the “Windows Azure Files” feature, and notice what it says in the green box. If it reads “try it now”, then this feature has not been activated. If it reads “sign up again”, then it is activated. If necessary, click on “try it now” and wait for the feature to become active.

This needs to be done before you create the storage account.

If this hasn’t been done you will need to turn on the feature and redo the steps to create a storage account, using a new name for the storage account.

NOTE: The Setup.cmd script will not create the VM because the image it references is obsolete. We will need to provide a different setupazuer.ps1.txt file or change it to use the current image. Edit the file before you run setup.cmd.

Get-AzureVMImage | where-object { $_.Label -like “Windows*” } | where { $_.Location.Split(“;”) -contains “West US”} | Sort-Object -Property PublishedDate | Format-List PublishedDate, Label, ImageName

Ex 2, Task 2, Step 12: When typing the net use command, make sure that the /u: switch looks like this:

/u:<storage_account> <storage_account_primary_key> In the Pdf, it isn’t clear that there should be a space between the storage account and the key. Basically, it’s a username and password.

Ex 3, Task 3: Students will need a bit of a warning here. The tool seems to have changed, so the screens in the Register Server wizard are slightly different. One thing that will need to be done prior to running the wizard is to download and save the vault credentials file, and not the certificate.

Ex 3, Task 4, Step 6: This is no longer a separate page. This setting is now on the “specify backup Time” page.



Lab 7: Planning and Implementing Data Services

Ex 1, Task 1, Step 6: The pricing tier defaults to S0, so to choose S1, you will have to click on the link to “Browse All Pricing Tiers”, and then you can choose S1.

Ex 1, Task 4, Step 4: The Metric should be “Total Database size” not “Storage”




Lab 8: Implementing PaaS Cloud Services

Ex 1, Task 1, Step 16: This may take quite a while. Be patient. Mine took approximately 20 minutes. It appeared to have hung. I confirmed that the storage account had been created in the azure portal. And then I did a Ctrl+C to get out of the hung PowerShell cmdlet.

Ex1, Task 2, Step 54: Make sure you delete the { } as well as the placeholder text.

Ex3, Task 1, Step 1 & 2: For some reason, I couldn’t add metrics to the staging environment. I was getting an error indicating that it was a backend issue. Nothing I had done. So I tried the steps using the Production environment. That worked fine. I tried on staging about 5 minutes later, and it worked fine.

Ex 3, Task 3: It may take up to 5 minutes for the alert to show as “active”, and a few minutes more for the email to come through. Probably not worth waiting for the email. Once the alert has gone active you can see all the settings.




Lab 9: Implementing a Content Delivery Network

Lab B, Ex 1, Task 2, Steps 11 & 12 Make sure that there are NOT quotation marks around the storage account name, and that the storage account name is in all lowercase letters.



Lab 10: Implement Azure Active Directory

No issues.






Lab 11: Managing an Active Directory Hybrid Environment

This setup.cmd file takes quite a long time (up to 30 minutes)—it is creating all the private AD infrastructure you need as Azure VMs.

Ex 2, Task 2, Step 7: Before you can properly load and log on to the Azure website you might need to turn off Internet Explored Enhanced Security (use server manager) and then close and restart your web browser.

Ex 2, Task 2, Step 25: If the .Net 3.5 framework does not successfully install because you do not have a copy of the source files (which is required), then try the following steps in ADatumDC1

  1. Go to Windows Update through the Control Panel.
  2. Click “check for update” on the left side. It may take a while to check for the update like it did on my machine. (~5-10 min)
  3. Click the “# important update is available” blue button next.
  4. On the next screen you will be shown important updates that are ready to be installed. You should have an update called “Update for Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 for x64-based Systems (KB3005628)”. With that update checked, click install on the bottom.

When the installation has finished, go back to server manager and retry adding the .NET 3.5 Framework Feature.

Ex 2, Task 6, Step 10: The URL you should type is “manage.windowsazure.com”



Lab 12: Implementing Automation

Ex 1, Task 1, Step 2: If there is no “Automation” link on the left of your Azure Management Portal, then you likely haven’t enabled this Preview Feature yet.

In IE go to http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/services/preview/, sign in with your Azure subscription, scroll down the page until you see a listing for “Azure Automation”.

Click on the green “try it now” button for Azure Automation. Make sure that your subscription for the course is selected, then click on Complete (the check mark).

It may take a few minutes for the feature to be activated. When it is finished it should read “sign up again” and “You are active” for the Azure Automation feature.

Return to the management portal. You may need to refresh the management portal page. The Automation link is towards the bottom of the list on the left. You may need to scroll down to find it.

Ex 2, Task 3: After the runbook has finished running you might need to refresh the management website in the browser to see the new objects.






















3 thoughts on “20533 Lab Tips and Tricks

  1. Agostino Martinelli

    Hi, when I lunch setup/azure from the azure powershell as administrator the sign in microsoft account become blank I try also @outlook.com but with the same result… can you help me_ thanks

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