Let me set things straight- when I first started this blog, it was my intention to host it on Azure.
I signed up for a trial subscription, I setup a WordPress 1 blog via a template in the Azure Marketplace and started messing around with some WordPress templates. I purchased my domain name from GoDaddy. I was ready to delegate A records and start to write some blog posts. Woohoo!
While on GoDaddy things changed.
I, like everyone, am susceptible to a good deal. I got my domain name clouduccino.com for the low price of $12 per year. As it was a new domain on a new account, I could get 1 year of WordPress hosting. Wait for it- for free! Or as Bill Burr puts it during his podcast advertising reads: for freeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
Back then, I had heard of Azure and read that it was getting traction and growing. I logged in to play around and compare it with AWS which I had more experience with. Since I was going to start a new job working more and more on Azure, I thought it was be a good way for me to learn the platform while I was also doing some study at the same time. Nothing like actually clicking around and doing something technical compared to simply reading or watching videos. Finally, coming from a Microsoft centric background, it was natural that I moved to learn more about Azure.
How was I going to host things on Azure?
Back before the time of Azure Resource Manager (ARM) there was Azure Service Management (ASM), now referred to classic across most of the service offerings. So, I was going to deploy a single instance ASM(classic) Cloud Service of WordPress from the Azure Marketplace. Just a quick deploy from template under the Shared service plan for $12.32 (current price) a month. Really simple stuff.
What about hosting in Azure now? Have things changed?
To be honest, not really. Moving up to basic ($89.08 per month) or standard ($119.40 a month) AppService’s 2 is simply out of my desired budget for the blog. I could simply move it to WordPress.com for $10.75 a month 3 and I believe I can keep my newly updated swanky theme, or even Medium.com 4 and host it for free on that awesome looking platform.
What about requirements? Well, there are not to many and it’s pretty simple. What I want from a hosting service is as follows:
- Affordable web hosting, probably $5-15 a month
- Reliable hosting that has minimal to no outages
- Somewhere where I can use my own domain name
- Somewhere that would support SSL (for when I finally am ready to fork out the $$$ for one)
- A WordPress.org based solution
- This allows for complete control over WordPress
- This allows for customisation and change to my heart’s content (which I do all the time since I always want to be improving)
Good question. GoDaddy has been pretty decent. Nothing against the service, apart from some minor gripes I’ve had. I won’t bad mouth them as overall I would certainly recommend using GoDaddy, but, since I want to be working with Azure more, blogging about that, for me it makes sense to have the blog hosted there. Nothing crazy, just simple thinking there.
Over the next few weeks I’m going to build out the Azure hosting, blog about, transition the blog, and blog about. From there I’ll look at setting up some reporting, improve security (possibly setup HTTPS instead of the now ever more disliked HTTP) and look at ways to tinker with Azure to get a close to a Ferrari solution, on a Kia budget (Sorry Kia, Mrs Lucian had one, which meant I had one, and the car was… certainly not a Ferrari).
Step 1: decision
The first step for any piece of work is the decision to go ahead and do the work. That’s either a choice that you make or a choice that is enforced upon you through circumstances. For me, I’ve finally make the choice. It’s the first big step. Next is going to be setting up Azure. Heres the rundown of what the next few blog posts should feature since Azure meets my requirements:
- Designing the solution
- Planning the transition
- Building out a POC
- Transitioning content from my current WordPress MySQL database
- As well as the theme
- All the WordPress plugins I use
- Any other misc config
- DNS cutover
- Decommissioning the legacy site and hosting service
So, stay tuned. I hope to share the experiences of moving at every step of the way. I don’t think there should be too much pain as most of those processes, from my brief Googles, are rather straight forward.