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Microsoft refreshes its Azure A-Series VM instance lineup

A remnant of the time when Microsoft's public cloud, Azure, carried the Windows moniker in its name hangs in building 42 on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Wash.

Microsoft today said that it has introduced new virtual machine (VM) instances through its Azure public cloud. It’s not a completely new type but instead a set of new options under the existing A-Series of VMs, which developers can use for a variety of workloads. The new VMs generally have more RAM and faster storage speeds.

The beefiest VM offers 8 vCPUs, 64GiB of RAM, 80GB of temporary solid state drive (SSD) storage, and “high” network bandwidth, according to a blog post today from Microsoft principal program manager Jon Beck.

This second version of A-Series VMs are available now in “most” of Azure’s data center regions around the world and will be available from all of them “shortly,” Beck wrote.

The announcement comes a week before Azure’s biggest competitor, Amazon Web Services (AWS), makes a bevy of its own announcements at its annual re:Invent conference. Historically one of those re:Invent announcements is about new raw computing infrastructure. So Microsoft is getting out of front of that.

Earlier this week AWS announced price cuts for its S3 storage service. Microsoft has previously committed to matching the prices of core AWS services. Last month Microsoft announced price cuts for some of its Azure VMs.

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Ms. A. C. Kennedy
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