What is Azure DevTest Labs?
Azure DevTest Labs is a service for easily creating, using, and managing infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) virtual machines (VMs) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environments in labs. Labs offer preconfigured bases and artifacts for creating VMs, and Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates for creating environments like Azure Web Apps or SharePoint farms.
Lab owners can create preconfigured VMs that have tools and software lab users need. Lab users can claim preconfigured VMs, or create and configure their own VMs and environments. Lab policies and other methods track and control lab usage and costs.
Common DevTest Labs scenarios
Common DevTest Labs scenarios include development VMs, test environments, and classroom or training labs. DevTest Labs promotes efficiency, consistency, and cost control by keeping all resource usage within the lab context.
Custom VM bases, artifacts, and templates
DevTest Labs can use custom images, formulas, artifacts, and templates to create and manage labs, VMs, and environments. The DevTest Labs public GitHub repository has many ready-to-use VM artifacts and ARM templates for creating labs, environments, or sandbox resource groups. Lab owners can also create custom images, formulas, and ARM templates to use for creating and managing labs, VMs, and environments.
Lab owners can store artifacts and ARM templates in private Git repositories, and connect the artifact repositories and template repositories to their labs so lab users can access them directly from the Azure portal. Add the same repositories to multiple labs in your organization to promote consistency, reuse, and sharing.
Development, test, and training scenarios
DevTest Labs users can quickly and easily create IaaS VMs and PaaS environments from preconfigured bases, artifacts, and templates. Developers, testers, and trainers can:
- Create Windows and Linux training and demo environments, or sandbox resource groups for exploring Azure, by using reusable ARM templates and artifacts.
- Test app versions and scale up load testing by creating multiple test agents and environments.
- Create development or testing environments from continuous integration and deployment (CI/CD) tools, integrated development environments (IDEs), or automated release pipelines. Integrate deployment pipelines with DevTest Labs to create environments on demand.
- Use the Azure CLI command-line tool to manage VMs and environments.
Lab policies and procedures to control costs
Lab owners can take several measures to reduce waste and control lab costs.
- Set lab policies like allowed number or sizes of VMs per user or lab.
- Set auto-shutdown and auto-startup schedules to shut down and start up lab VMs at specific times of day.
- Monitor costs to track lab and resource usage and estimate trends.
- Set VM expiration dates, or delete labs or lab VMs when no longer needed.
Get started with Azure DevTest Labs
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