Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2 Release Notes

This document contains the release notes for the Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2 release and describes New Features in the SDK, Known Issues, and Breaking Changes.

The Windows Azure SDK for .NET version number (2.2) is determined by the core Windows Azure service runtime assembly using semantic versioning. Other client libraries packaged inside the Windows Azure SDK for .NET, along with their respective NuGet packages, follow independent versioning based on the semantic versioning scheme.

The Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2 includes Windows Azure Storage 2.1.0.2, Windows Azure Service Bus 2.1.3, Windows Azure Caching 2.1.0, and Windows Azure Configuration Manager 2.0.1 libraries. You can also download these libraries from their respective NuGet packages.

For more information related to this release, see the following resources:

·      The latest information about using Integrated Sign In to authenticate from Visual Studio - Integrated Sign In - Frequently Asked Questions

·      The Windows Azure SDK 2.2 release announcement

·      The ASP.NET and web tools release announcement

·      New features in Windows Azure - Scott Guthrie’s Blog and the Windows Azure Team Blog

·      New features in the Windows Azure Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio - What's New in the Windows Azure Tools

·      New features and release notes for Windows Azure Service Bus - Release Notes for Service Bus

·      New features and release notes for the Windows Azure Plugin for Eclipse with Java (by Microsoft Open Technologies) - What's New in the Windows Azure Plugin for Eclipse with Java (by Microsoft Open Technologies)

New Features in the SDK

The following are new features and updates in the Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2:

·      Visual Studio 2013 is supported in SDK Version 2.2 - The Windows Azure SDK for .NET version 2.2 adds support for Visual Studio 2013 and discontinues support for Visual Studio 2010.  While versions 2.1 and earlier of the SDK continue to support Visual Studio 2010, we recommend that you upgrade your Visual Studio 2010 projects to Visual Studio 2012 or Visual Studio 2013 now that SDK version 2.2 is released.  Upgrading your projects will ensure that you are able to use the latest features of Windows Azure as new versions of the SDK are released.

·      Sign in to connect to Windows Azure – Access Windows Azure resources through Visual Studio by signing in with your Microsoft account or organizational account as an alternative to loading a subscription publish settings file. For more information, see Managing Windows Azure accounts, subscriptions, and administrative roles.

·      Windows Azure Web Sites support in Visual Studio - In Visual Studio 2013 you can use Server Explorer to interact directly with your remote Windows Azure Web Sites. You can sign in to your Windows Azure account, create new sites, configure existing sites, view real-time logs, and more. Coming soon, you'll be able to start a live debugging session and run in debug mode remotely in Windows Azure. Most of the new features for Windows Azure Web Sites also work in Visual Studio 2012 when you install the current release of the Windows Azure SDK for .NET.

For more information, see Getting started with Windows Azure and ASP.NET and Troubleshooting Windows Azure Web Sites in Visual Studio.

·      Remote debugging for Windows Azure Cloud Services (preview) now available – Start a live debugging session to debug an application running on Cloud Services directly from Visual Studio. For more information, see Debugging a Cloud Service in Visual Studio.

·      TopologyBlast – This new functionality will allow Windows Azure to communicate topology changes to all instances of a service at one time instead of walking upgrade domains. This feature is exposed via the topologyChangeDiscovery setting in the Service Definition (.csdef) file and the Simultaneous* events and classes in the Service Runtime library.

·      Windows Azure Service Bus – partition queues and topics across multiple message brokers – Service Bus employs multiple message brokers to process and store messages. Each queue or topic is assigned to one message broker. This mapping has the following drawbacks:

·      The message throughput of a queue or topic is limited to the messaging load a single message broker can handle.

·      If a message broker becomes temporarily unavailable or overloaded, all entities that are assigned to that message broker are unavailable or experience low throughput.

To overcome these drawbacks, Service Bus now enables queues or topics to be partitioned across multiple message brokers. For more information on partitioned messaging entities, see Windows Azure Service Bus.

Known Issues

The following are known issues in the Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2:

·         Remote debugging may fail to attach to an existing Cloud Service- After deploying a new Cloud Service the debugger may fail to attach to an existing cloud service with the error message “There was a failure to launch the remote debugger”.  To correct this problem, restart Visual Studio and reattach the debugger to the new deployment.  

To ensure the best experience when using the remote debugger you should deploy using an unoptimized debug build configuration for your project.

·         Side-by-Side Cloud Service Debugging works with projects built with 1.7 and later versions of the SDK- Side-by-Side Cloud Service debugging is only compatible with Windows Azure SDK for .NET versions 1.7, 1.8, 2.0, 2.1, and 2.2. For a full debugging experience, projects built using versions prior to version 1.7 must be upgraded. For more information, see Windows Azure Cloud Services Support Lifecycle Policy.

For example, when running a project built on Windows Azure SDK for .NET version 1.6 on a machine with version 2.2 installed, you will see the following error message: "The system is missing a prerequisite to execute the service."

To work around this error, uninstall the compute emulator included in version 2.2 and install the compute emulator for version 1.6. If you do this, however, you will not be able to run an application built on SDK version 2.2 on this machine.

·         CSRun requires an elevated command prompt – Tools and scripts that use the CSRun command-line tool (csrun.exe) to launch the compute emulator, including Windows Azure PowerShell, should be run from an elevated command prompt, or you may receive an error like the following: “The compute emulator has an error: Compute Emulator needs to be launched with administrator privileges in order to run in full emulation mode. Please restart the emulator with correct privileges.”

·         Integrated Sign In to Windows Azure Using the Windows Azure Tools for Visual Studio 2.2- This section describes how to troubleshoot potential issues you may encounter when using Integrated Sign In. For more information, see Integrated Sign In - Frequently Asked Questions.

·      No Windows Azure Subscriptions were added- After trying to connect to Windows Azure you may receive the following message “No Windows Azure Subscriptions were added.  Sign in with an account that has subscriptions”.  This message indicates that either 1) you could not be authenticated with the credentials provided or 2) you were authenticated with an account that does not have an associated Windows Azure subscription.

To correct this problem, if you’re logging in with an organizational account (for example user@contoso.com), go to the Windows Azure Management Portal and ensure that your organizational account has been added to a Windows Azure Directory associated with the subscription that you’re trying to access and that your account appears in the list of co-administrators under the Setting tab. If you’re logging in with a Microsoft account (for example an Outlook.com or Hotmail.com account), contact your subscription’s Service Administrator to ensure that your Microsoft account appears and has been added to the co-administrators in the Windows Azure Management Portal. (If you are the Service Administrator, you will have co-administrator permissions by default.)

·      Databases and Mobile Services not listed in Server Explorer- The SQL Database and Mobile Services nodes in server explorer do not support integrated sign in at this time. These nodes still require a management certificate for authentication with Windows Azure.

·      Unable to view multiple accounts in Multi-account sign in- The integrated sign in feature allows users to be signed in with one User ID at a time. Once signed in, Visual Studio can operate on all subscriptions for which that account is a Service Administrator or a co-administrator. If you need simultaneous access to multiple subscriptions that do not have a common administrator you should continue to use management certificates for authentication.

·      Duplicate web sites listed in Server Explorer- When a user has both management certificate and account access to the same subscription, the Windows Azure web sites shown in server explorer may be duplicated.  To avoid this duplication, use only one means of authentication (either certificate or account) for each subscription

·      Unable to sign out after signing in with a federated account- After signing in with an organizational account or federated account (an account using ADFS to sign in, for example user@contoso.com), you may not be able to sign out from Visual Studio.  In order to correct this problem you will need to close Visual Studio and sign in with different credentials.

·      Account-based access subject to expiration- Account-based access to Windows Azure uses tokens. For security reasons, these tokens expire. If you are using account-based authentication, at some point after you have successfully connected Visual Studio to Windows Azure, your authentication token will expire and you will be required to enter your account credentials in order to re-authenticate.  The lifetime of the authentication token is determined by the authentication provider and could vary from as short as one day up to several weeks.  When your token does expire, you may see the following message: “You are currently signed in as username, Sign out and Sign in as a different user”.  Click OK and enter your credentials on the Sign In dialog in order to refresh your expired authentication token.

4.   Edit and Continue

·      In a 64-bit environment, Edit and Continue requires Visual Studio 2013 and .NET Framework 4.5.1 (since .NET Framework 4.5.1 is always installed with Visual Studio 2013 and it is an in-place upgrade of .NET Framework 4.5, Edit and Continue will still work in Visual Studio 2013 even when targeting .NET Framework 4.5 on x64 machines).

·      In a 32-bit environment, Edit and Continue works in both Visual Studio 2012 and Visual Studio 2013.

·      Edit and Continue requires Azure projects to target IIS Express when F5, it doesn’t work with full IIS. Expect to see “Edit and Continue not allowed” dialog.

·      Edit and Continue doesn’t work in the WebRole.OnStart event. Expect to see “Edit and Continue not allowed” dialog.

·      Edit and Continue works with both full emulator and express emulator.

·      When targeting full emulator, Edit and Continue will only apply changes to the one instance that causes the break (breakpoint or exception), if a role has multiple instances, the behavior might be inconsistent after using Edit and Continue to apply changes to code on the fly.

Breaking Changes

The following are breaking changes in the Windows Azure SDK for .NET 2.2:

·      Turn on Windows feature ASP.NET 4.5 to run MVC4 applications in on Windows Server 2012 R2/Windows 8.1- Running an MVC4 application in Visual Studio 2012 on Windows Server 2012 R2/Windows 8.1 displays the following error if ASP.NET 4.5 is not enabled:  Configuring Web http://localhost:6761 for ASP.NET 4.5 failed. You must manually configure this site for ASP.NET 4.5 in order for the site to run correctly. ASP.NET 4.0 has not been registered on the Web server. You need to manually configure your Web server for ASP.NET 4.0 in order for your site to run correctly.

To resolve, manually enable this feature by navigating to Control Panel -> Uninstall a program ->Turn Windows features on or off -> .NET Framework 4.5 Advanced Services. Check ASP.NET 4.5 and then select OK.

·      Running the Windows Azure compute emulator on Windows 8.1- Internet Explorer in Windows 8.1 has a new Enhanced Security mode which breaks the Start Without Debugging (CTRL+F5) functionality of the compute emulator.  When the compute emulator starts, Internet Explorer launches and fails to load the web application hosted at the local host IP because http://127.0.0.x is not listed in Trusted sites. Start With Debugging (F5) functionality is not affected.

See Also

Introducing Windows Azure