ASDK admin basics

There are several things you need to know if you're new to Azure Stack Development Kit (ASDK) administration. This guidance provides an overview of your role as an Azure Stack operator in the evaluation environment. Familiarizing yourself with this info ensures your test users will become productive as quickly as possible.

First, you should review the What is Azure Stack Development Kit? article to make sure you understand the purpose of the ASDK and its limitations. You should use the development kit as a "sandbox," where you can evaluate Azure Stack to develop and test your apps in a non-production environment.

Like Azure, Azure Stack innovates rapidly so we'll regularly release new builds of the ASDK. However, you can't upgrade the ASDK like you can Azure Stack integrated systems deployments. So, if you want to move to the latest build, you must completely redeploy the ASDK. You can't apply update packages. This process takes time, but the benefit is that you can try out the latest features as soon as they become available.

What account should I use?

There are a few account considerations you should be aware of when managing Azure Stack. This is especially true in deployments using Windows Server Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) as the identity provider instead of Azure Active Directory (Azure AD). The following account considerations apply to both Azure Stack integrated systems and ASDK deployments:

Account Azure AD AD FS
Local Admin (.\Administrator) ASDK host admin ASDK host admin
AzureStack\AzureStackAdmin ASDK host admin

Can be used to sign in to the Azure Stack administrator portal

Access to view and administer Service Fabric rings
ASDK host admin

No access to the Azure Stack administrator portal

Access to view and administer Service Fabric rings

No longer owner of the Default Provider Subscription (DPS)
AzureStack\CloudAdmin Can access and run permitted commands within the Privileged Endpoint Can access and run permitted commands within the Privileged Endpoint

Can't sign in to the ASDK host

Owner of the Default Provider Subscription (DPS)
Azure AD Global Administrator Used during installation

Owner of the Default Provider Subscription (DPS)
Not applicable

What tools do I use to manage?

You can use the Azure Stack administrator portal https://adminportal.local.azurestack.external or PowerShell to manage Azure Stack. The easiest way to learn the basic concepts is through the portal. If you want to use PowerShell, you need to install PowerShell for Azure Stack and download the Azure Stack tools from GitHub.

Azure Stack uses Azure Resource Manager as its underlying deployment, management, and organization mechanism. If you're going to manage Azure Stack and help support users, you should learn about Azure Resource Manager. You can learn more by reading the Getting Started with Azure Resource Manager whitepaper.

Your typical responsibilities

Your users want to use services. From their perspective, your main role is to make these services available to them. Using the ASDK, you can learn which services to offer, and how to make those services available by creating plans, offers, and quotas. You'll also need to add items to the marketplace, such as virtual machine (VM) images. The easiest way is to download marketplace items from Azure to Azure Stack.


If you want to test your plans, offers, and services, you should use the user portal https://portal.local.azurestack.external; not the administrator portal https://adminportal.local.azurestack.external.

In addition to providing services, you must take care of all the regular duties of an Azure Stack Operator to keep the ASDK up and running. These duties include the following things:

  • Add user accounts for either Azure AD or AD FS deployments.
  • Assign role-based access control (RBAC) roles (this isn't restricted to just admins).
  • Monitor infrastructure health.
  • Manage network and storage resources.
  • Replace failed development kit host computer hardware.

Where to get support

For the ASDK, you can ask support-related questions in the Azure Stack MSDN Forum.

You can also access the forums by clicking Help (question mark) in the upper-right corner of the administrator portal. Then click Help + support to open Help + Support Overview, which has a link to the forum. MSDN forums are regularly monitored.


Because the ASDK is an evaluation environment, there's no official support offered through Microsoft Support.

Next steps

Deploy the ASDK