Windows

Azure Disk Encryption and Azure Backup

If you are looking to use Azure Disk Encryption and Azure Backup you need to follow a couple of additional steps to the standard encryption procedure.

The offical documentation can be found below:

How it works

There are two types of encryption keys to consider.

  • BEK – Bit Locker Encryption Key
  • KEK – Key Encryption Key

The encryption service uses Key Vault to manage the secrets, to do this we need an application in Azure AD that has permissions (Set by a Key Vault Access Policy) to operate inside of Key Vault.

This is used if you are just using BEK or setting up KEK for Azure Backup support.

For KEK a Key must be imported or created in the Key Vault. You reference this key when running the commands.

Finally, the Backup Management Service needs permissions to access the Key Vault and the keys.

Image 1: Example of Secrets inside of Key Vault

Procedure

Please note: You will need a Key Vault before you can complete this procedure. The Key Vault must be in the same region as the VM that will be encrypted.

1. Set up an Azure AD Application

In Azure Active Directory, select App registrations and create a new app registration. Enter a Name, select Web app / API and assign a sign-on URL (you will not use this so a default entry is adequate).


Image 2: App Registration in Azure Active Directory

Make a note of the Application ID and create and take note of the application Key. Please note that the Key will only be available to you after it is saved and only once on the page. After that it will be hidden.

2. Configure the permissions in the Key Vault for the new Azure AD Application

In the Key Vault set up an Access Policy for the new application.

      
Image 3: Setting up permissions in the Key Vault (an Access Policy)

Key Permissions need to be set to Wrap Key, Secret permissions to Set.


Image 4: Setting the Key Vault Access Policy for the Azure AD Application

3. Create a Key in Key Vault

This will be the key used to wrap the BEK, also known as the KEK


Image 5: Creating the KEK

4. Set permissions for the Backup Management Service

Select Access Policies and from the template select Azure Backup. The principal will be Backup Management Service.

    
Image 6: Creating the Access Policy for the Backup Management Service

5. Check the Advanced access policies to enable access to Azure Disk Encryption for volume encryption.


Image 7: Setting the Advanced Access policies for Disk Encryption

PowerShell commands for an existing VM


subscriptionName = "SUBSCRIPTION NAME"

$RGName = "RESOURCE GROUP NAME"

$VMName = "VM NAME"

$AADClientID = "AZURE AD APPLICATION ID"

$AADClientSecret = "AZURE AD APPLICATION SECRET"

$VaultName= "KEY VAULT NAME"

$keyName = "KEY NAME"

$keyEncryptionKeyUri = Get-AzureKeyVaultKey -VaultName $VaultName -KeyName $keyName

$KeyVault = Get-AzureRmKeyVault -VaultName $VaultName -ResourceGroupName $RGName

$DiskEncryptionKeyVaultUrl = $KeyVault.VaultUri

$KeyVaultResourceId = $KeyVault.ResourceId

Set-AzureRmVMDiskEncryptionExtension -ResourceGroupName $RGName -VMName $vmName -

AadClientID $AADClientID -AadClientSecret $AADClientSecret -

DiskEncryptionKeyVaultUrl $DiskEncryptionKeyVaultUrl -DiskEncryptionKeyVaultId

$KeyVaultResourceId -KeyEncryptionKeyUrl $keyEncryptionKeyUri.Id -

KeyEncryptionKeyVaultId $keyVaultResourceId

Disclaimer:  Please note although I work for Microsoft the information provided here does not represent an official Microsoft position and is provided as is.

Creating a VM from an Azure Image | Azure

Working with Azure in the enterprise means you will quickly want to create your own custom images.  In this introductory article I will show you an example of how to create an image from an existing generalized imaged.

Please note:

  • This is utilising the ARM model and does not apply to Classic.
  • This assumes you have created a generalized image in Azure and know where it is!
  • This process is not considering on premises VMs.
  • This process uses Windows images.

The following documents and articles were used to create the script below.  Many thanks to the efforts and hard work of the authors.

Create a Virtual Machine from a User Image by Philo

Upload a Windows VM image to Azure for Resource Manager deployments by Cynthia Nottingham

Cynthia shows how to create the image and find the URL of the uploaded image.  She also gives detailed examples of the PowerShell scripts required to create the new VM.

Philo uses variables for existing networks which I found very useful and just comment out the pieces I do not need, e.g. when the vnet already exists.

Happy VM creating!


$cred = Get-Credential
$rgName = "ResourceGroupName"
$location = "Azure Location"
$pipName = "Public IP address Name"
$pip = New-AzureRmPublicIpAddress -Name $pipName -ResourceGroupName $rgName -Location $location -AllocationMethod Dynamic
$subnet1Name = "Subnet Name"
$vnetSubnetAddressPrefix = "Subnet address e.g. 10.1.0.0/24"
$vnetAddressPrefix = "vnet address e.g. 10.1.0.0/16"
$nicname = "Name of Nic"
$vnetName = "Name of vnet"
$subnetconfig = New-AzureRmVirtualNetworkSubnetConfig -Name $subnet1Name -AddressPrefix $vnetSubnetAddressPrefix
#$vnet = New-AzureRmVirtualNetwork -Name $vnetName -ResourceGroupName $rgName -Location $location -AddressPrefix $vnetAddressPrefix -Subnet $subnetconfig
$nic = New-AzureRmNetworkInterface -Name $nicname -ResourceGroupName $rgName -Location $location -SubnetId $vnet.Subnets[0].Id -PublicIpAddressId $pip.Id
$vmName = "Name of VM"
$vmConfig = New-AzureRmVMConfig -VMName $vmName -VMSize "Standard_A4"
$computerName = "Nameof Cumputer"
$vm = Set-AzureRmVMOperatingSystem -VM $vmConfig -Windows -ComputerName $computerName -Credential $cred -ProvisionVMAgent -EnableAutoUpdate
$vm = Add-AzureRmVMNetworkInterface -VM $vm -Id $nic.Id
$osDiskName = "Name of Disk"
$osDiskUri = '{0}vhds/{1}{2}.vhd' -f $storageAcc.PrimaryEndpoints.Blob.ToString(), $vmName.ToLower(), $osDiskName
$urlOfUploadedImageVhd = "URL to generaized image https://somename.blob.core.windows.net/system/Microsoft.Compute/Images/templates/name-osDisk.00aaaa-1bbb-2dd3-4efg-hijlkmn0123.vhd"
$vm = Set-AzureRmVMOSDisk -VM $vm -Name $osDiskName -VhdUri $osDiskUri -CreateOption fromImage -SourceImageUri $urlOfUploadedImageVhd -Windows
$result = New-AzureRmVM -ResourceGroupName $rgName -Location $location -VM $vm
$result

Disclaimer:  Please note although I work for Microsoft the information provided here does not represent an official Microsoft position and is provided as is.

Windows 8, Touch me Now!

There have been a number of blogs about the Windows 8 Metro look and feel, some positive some negative.  In my own experience if you use the OS from a touch enabled device the experience is good, try using a mouse and it is frustrating.  No doubt it will be possible to switch between interfaces however what I would like to see is the intelligence in the operating system to detect the type of device you are using and then present the interface based on the result.  Between devices if the user choices and settings can be synced then I think Microsoft will have a real winner.  In my opinion leave it up to admins to decide who gets what and when and force users to use an interface they are not happy with and the operating system will be rejected.