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Azure Sandbox Environment

Sandbox environments offer a safe and isolated space for users to learn, experiment, and test new technologies without affecting production systems. In this episode of Azure on Air, Lex welcomed Luke Murray, a Microsoft Azure MVP from Hamilton, New Zealand, to discuss the concept of Azure sandbox environments. Luke discusses the significance of sandbox environments, their technical implementation, and how they can help users accelerate projects and enhance learning.

What are Sandbox Environments?

Sandbox environments are not meant to be a pathway to production. Instead, they provide a playground for users to test things at their own pace, without the pressure of impacting production systems. These environments can be limited in scope and time, allowing users to explore and learn without worrying about consequences.

The Conceptual Viewpoint

According to Luke, Gartner identified platform engineering and developer self-service capabilities as one of the top 2024 strategic technology trends. Sandbox environments allow giving developers this playground to test and build upon the platform.

Luke described platform engineering as building self-service internal platforms, maintained by a team, to meet the needs of the users consuming that platform. Sandbox environments work well under this concept.

Azure landing zones, which provide cloud adoption best practices from Microsoft, are also highly relevant when architecting sandbox environments. They cover areas like identity, governance, networking considerations that apply to sandboxes, too.

The Importance of Sandbox Environments:

Sandbox environments are crucial for several reasons:

  • Safe exploration: Users can learn new technologies and features without affecting production systems.
  • Accelerated project development: Sandboxes enable developers to test and develop applications quickly, reducing the time to market.
  • Cost-effective learning: Sandboxes allow users to experiment with various services and configurations, helping them make informed decisions about which tools and settings to use in production environments.
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