Today I attended Microsoft Azure Tour in Washington, DC and I’m glad I did because there was a number of pretty interesting sessions. It’s impossible to rehash everything, but my favorite four sessions were:
Protecting and Accelerating Azure Web App with CloudFlare
I have recently finished watching excellent Pluralsight course Getting Started with CloudFlare™ Security by Troy Hunt and got so intrigued by it that I wanted to get more familiar with it. Fortunately I already had Web App running on Azure that was configured with custom domain name and SSL certificate. It turned out to be a perfect continuation from the previous post.
So, what is so special about CloudFlare? Here’s a short list of fascinating features that were of particular interest to me that are available in free and paid plans.
CloudFlare makes site safer by:
- Enabling SSL Support for your site
- Redirecting visitors to HTTPS/SSL
- Offering HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS)
- Protecting against DDoS attacks
- Protecting against XSS and SQL injection attacks
- Protecting against content scrapers or content thieves
- Protecting against bandwidth thieves
- Reducing spam comments
- Limiting content from suspicious visitors
CloudFlare makes site faster by:
- Providing CDN services
- Offering custom caching options
- Improving a web page’s window.onload time
- Providing Always On functionality
As a side benefit, making your site faster improves its web search ranking.
These are just few awesome features provided by CloudFlare. The full list can be found on Overview page.
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Configure Custom Domain Name and SSL Certificate in Azure Web App
I’m reading Learning Windows Azure by Geoff Webber-Cross, following the examples and got to the chapter where I need to configure a custom domain name for the Azure Web App and upload SSL Certificate. I have not done it before, so it turned out to be an interesting experience.
The author did not mention what domain name registrar he used but he mentioned that he got SSL Certificate from GlobalSign. Since I already had an account with GoDaddy, I decided to buy a domain name and SSL Certificate from it. Another difference from author’s experience is that I’m doing the development in Windows 8 Pro virtual machine (Parallels) on MacBook Pro.
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