Microsoft Azure has had a pre-configured SharePoint 2013 image for quite a while, but you still had to create a SQL Server image to make it work and then run the SharePoint wizard to create the farm. Now they have a wizard approach to quickly create a ready to use three server basic farm or a nine server high-availability farm. Just click, click, click, wait a while and start playing with SharePoint! Just the thing for evaluations, demos and development.
The three server farm includes a SQL server, a DC server and a SharePoint server. The high-availability farm includes two DC servers, three SQL server servers, two application servers and two SharePoint web servers. (This one should drain your Azure budget! Remember to turn these off when not in use.)
Details on both configurations can be found here: http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/virtual-machines-sharepoint-farm-config-azure-preview/
Here's the steps to create your Azure SharePoint 2013 farm: http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/virtual-machines-sharepoint-farm-azure-preview/
A few observations:
- SharePoint Version: 15.0.4571.1502 (Service Pack 1 (revised))
- License: SharePoint Server Trial with Enterprise Client Access License
- An initial web application and site collection have been created, but you will be asked to pick the template for the top level site on the first visit.
- None of the services applications have been installed. User Profiles, Search, etc.
- The VMs are available via Remote Desktop.
- SharePoint is accessible from the web, so you can test from your local PC.
- Outgoing and incoming email has not been configured.
- Does not include Office Web Apps server.
Things you will need to do to have a complete SharePoint:
- Configure the services
- Configure email options
- Add one more server VM for Office Web apps
Now all we need is a volunteer to create the PowerShell scripts to do the final work for us!