Tag Archives: Cloud

How to: configure custom DNS names for multiple sub domain-based Azure web sites

This blog post shows how to configure multiple custom sub domain names to map to multiple Azure web sites.

Azure web sites supports multiple web sites (and at the moment you can run several free websites in the Azure web sites preview).

When a new site is created it gets a default subdomain name in the “azurewebsites.net” domain, so if you create a web site called “mysite” then it would be available as “mysite.azurewebsites.net”.


It is also possible to configure custom domain names for the sites. To be able to use custom domain names the web site needs to be in the shared or reserved web site mode. Neither is free, you can see the current pricing information in the portal. (If you have an MSDN subscription or MPN association with benefits then you might get access to some resources as part of the subscription.)


If you have several Azure sites and want to map them to several sub-domains for your custom domain it is possible and quite easy. However, the documentation about this has improvement potential, hence this blog post.


A custom domain “stefanjohansson.org” needs to be mapped to 3 different sites in Azure:

domain name Azure Site Azure DNS name
stefanjohansson.org myplainsite myplaintestsite.azurewebsites.net
test1.stefanjohansson.org my1sttestsite my1sttestsite.azurewebsites.net
test2.stefanjohansson.org my2ndtestsite my2ndtestsite.azurewebsites.net

Custom CNAME records

Step 1 is to set up custom “awverify” CNAME mappings from each domain to Azure for verification so that Microsoft knows that you own/can administer the domain.

Name Type Data
awverify.stefanjohansson.org CNAME awverify.myplaintestsite.azurewebsites.net
awverify.test1.stefanjohansson.org CNAME awverify.my1sttestsite.azurewebsites.net
awverify.test2.stefanjohansson.org CNAME awverify.my2ndtestsite.azurewebsites.net

once the CNAME’s are valid and can be read by Azure you can create A-records for the subdomains so that you can reach Azure using the custom domain names

A Records

Step 2 is to configure A records for the domains and sub domains.

First look up the actual IP-address (faked as below) of the sites in the manage domains page of the Azure management dashboard.

Next, create the custom A records for the sub domain names in your DNS providers dashboard (such as your hosting providers administration panel/tool, your registrars website or your dns tool for internally hosted dns systems.)

Name Type Data
stefanjohansson.org A
test1.stefanjohansson.org A
test2.stefanjohansson.org A

Configure Azure Websites

Step 3 is to configure the new A records in the Azure websites dashboard. The configuration tool checks that both CNAME and A records are valid so it is not possible to add this before the configuration changes in the DNS-system has propagated.

The manage domains link is in the Configure tab of the site in the bottom toolbar as below



Once the configuration is done the domain names should be visible in the Azure dashboard and you should be able to navigate to the custom domain name and be able to access your resources in the Azure web sites using your custom domain names.



More resources

(Also, please note that the sub domain names, Azure sites and ip-addresses used here are faked.)

What is the cost of cloudspamming?

Being of curious nature, I wanted to test if spam traffic would affect cloud services in a typical “pay as you go” scenario.

I ordered an introductory SQL Azure package from Microsoft with a pay as you go pricing plan.


By creating a plain, empty, SQL server instance with a random public access name I managed to get a monthly $10 cost in just 2 months without any advertising or mentions anywhere.

It will be very interesting to se how the cloud services will develop in the future in regards to this aspect.


How not to provide “cloud” services

When providing cloud services to customers, it might seem as a good idea to have all information securely tucked away somewhere within the providers servers and storage devices. If, for instance, your phone is lost and all data is stored on a server somewhere its quite easy to just disable the phones access to the data and get a new one – up to speed with everything in minutes, nothing lost.

However, when its the other way around, you still have your phone but someone misplaced the cloud – then its another story altogether.

Like this little story here:

“Regrettably, based on Microsoft/Danger’s latest recovery assessment of their systems, we must now inform you that personal information stored on your device – such as contacts, calendar entries, to-do lists or photos – that is no longer on your Sidekick almost certainly has been lost as a result of a server failure at Microsoft/Danger.”


This is the current information (10-10-2009) for T-Mobiles’ Sidekick users in the US. Their phones store everything on Microsoft’s (Danger is a Microsoft subsidiary) servers somewhere in “the cloud”. When they manage to misplace their entire data store it seems that the whole idea that big, safe, knowledgeable corporations like Microsoft and  T-Mobile are somehow better suited to provide a safe haven for your data is a little off.

Note to self: When providing cloud services to store clients data, make a backup copy and store it in a safe place.

image001 (screenshot of the message to the end users)

UPDATE – After several weeks it seems as if everything actually managed to be found and almost restored… You still have to have your photos emailed to you but I guess that is ok since the Sidekick phone is probably not around anymore anyhow…