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DEMO: Create an Availability Set

The course is part of these learning paths

AZ-303 Exam Preparation: Technologies for Microsoft Azure Architects
AZ-104 Exam Preparation: Microsoft Azure Administrator
AZ-103 Exam Preparation: Microsoft Azure Administrator
3 Pillars of the Azure Cloud
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Duration1h 27m


This course will give you a basic understanding of Azure virtual machines (VMs) and how you can use them in your Azure environments.

The course begins by introducing you to Azure VMs and what resources are necessary to deploy them, before moving onto pricing and the different virtual machine options available. Next, the course explores availability sets and availability zones and gives a demonstration that shows you how to create an availability set using the Azure portal.

The course shows how to deploy both Windows and Linux virtual machines, and you'll get a demonstration of how to deploy and connect to each. Rounding off the course is a section on basic management tasks; you’ll learn how to start, stop, restart, redeploy, and resize virtual machines.

This course is packed full of real-world demonstrations from within the Azure portal to give you first-hand experience of how to get the most from Azure Virtual Machines.

For any feedback you may have relating to this course, please contact us at support@cloudacademy.com.

Learning Objectives

  • Gain a foundational understanding of Azure virtual machines, their features, and their pricing
  • Learn how to set up availability sets
  • Learn how to create and connect to both Windows and Linux virtual machines with Azure
  • Learn how to manage your Azure VMs including starting, stopping, restarting, redeploying, and resizing VMs

Intended Audience

This course is intended for anyone who is interested in learning about the basics of Azure virtual machines.


To get the most from this course you should have a basic understanding of Microsoft Azure and of the Azure portal.


Hi there and welcome back. In this brief demonstration, I'm going to show you how to create an availability set. We're not going to put anything in the availability set quite yet, because we'll do that later on when we create our virtual machines.

So on the screen here, I'm logged in to my Azure portal. I'm logged in as my admin account here and what I've done is create a resource group called VM Course. So I'm looking at my empty resource group here.

To create my availability set, I'm simply going to go up here, click add and then I'm going to search for availability. And then from the market place here, I can select availability set.

We can see here in the create blade, that Microsoft Azure is telling us that an availability set is a group of virtual machines that are split out across multiple fault domains and update domains. And this is what I was talking about earlier. It also tells us here that the availability set ensures the application that's hosted on our VMs isn't affected by single points of failure. And these were the failures I was talking about earlier. Things like network switches and power units.

Now we do have a plans tab here, if we click plans, there's nothing new here, it's just repeating the description. There are no special plans for availability sets, it's just an availability set. So we'll just go back over to overview. And then what we'll do is create our availability set.

Now on the create blade we have some information we need to provide. We need to tell Azure what subscription and resource group is going to hold our new availability set. For this demonstration, we're going to put it in the Lab Subscription and in the VM Course resource group. And then what we need to do is give our availability set a name. So we're just going to call this, my avail set.

Now if we hover over the icon for region here, basically this is telling us that the region we select is where this availability set is going to be deployed to. So, since we're going to work in Central U.S, we'll put this in the Central U.S region. That's the region I usually work in when I'm doing labs and demonstrations.

If we hover over fault domains here, we can see that a fault domain contains virtual machines that share common power and physical network switches. The default here is two. If we hover over update domains here, we can see that machines that are in an update domain will be restarted together during planned maintenance. It also tells us here, and we covered this earlier, that Azure will never restart more than one update domain at a time.

The default configure is to fault domains and five update domains. Now we can expand the fault domains to three and we can drag our slider for update domains to a maximum of 20. So let's drop these back down to two and five, their defaults and then we have an option here for managed disks. If we hover over the icon here, we can see that if we want to use virtual machines in this availability set with managed disks, we need to set this option to yes. We can also see here that if we hover away, that yes if the default option.

So we'll leave this in its current configuration. If we click next here for advanced, we can see that we have the option to configure a proximity placement group. The proximity placement group allows you to group as your resources physically close or within the same region, and that's what it's telling us up here. Now if we hover over the icon here for proximity placement group, we get a little more information.

We can see that a proximity placement group is a logical grouping that's used to ensure the Azure compute resources are physically located close to one and other. Generally speaking, you would use a proximity placement group to ensure resources that require low latency remain close together. An example of this would be, let's say a great plains deployment where you might have the great plain server that has to talk back to a SQL server.

So in this scenario, if you planned on deploying great plains to one VM and then SQL to another VM, you'd probably put them in a proximity placement group because you want those two servers as close together as possible to minimize that latency. We're not doing anything with proximity placement groups here so we'll leave this alone at its default and then of course we could do some tagging, we're not gonna do any tagging here, so from this point, we can click review and create.

We can see that the validation passes and then we'll create our availability set. The creation of an availability set takes just a few seconds and we can see it's already been completed. If we go to our resource here, now we can see here we have nothing in the availability set right now, but we'll take care of that later on when we add a few virtual machines.

So with that, let's call it a wrap and I'll see you over in the next lecture.

About the Author

Learning paths6

Tom is a 25+ year veteran of the IT industry, having worked in environments as large as 40k seats and as small as 50 seats. Throughout the course of a long an interesting career, he has built an in-depth skillset that spans numerous IT disciplines. Tom has designed and architected small, large, and global IT solutions.

In addition to the Cloud Platform and Infrastructure MCSE certification, Tom also carries several other Microsoft certifications. His ability to see things from a strategic perspective allows Tom to architect solutions that closely align with business needs.

In his spare time, Tom enjoys camping, fishing, and playing poker.