Managing remote connectivity in a secure manner at scale
When users and administrators connect to cloud services, security comes first. Enterprises are increasingly moving mission-critical applications to the cloud, which increases the demand for secure, scalable, and dependable jumpbox services and remote public access. With this change, businesses are depending on managed jumpbox services to enable user access rather than disclosing public IP addresses on virtual machines (VMs) and cloud infrastructure that operate their apps. Fundamentally, managed jumpbox services and remote connectivity must offer four essential features:
Secure public access that limits how much of the target applications’ access points and IP addresses are made public.
· single deployments that control connectivity between connected or local virtual private networks.
· scalable infrastructure features that control the volume of active remote connections.
· metrics, surveillance, and alerting for the technical setup that enables remote connectivity
Public access that is secure
Traditional (on-premises) jumpbox solutions are frequently installed on a management network with a low level of trust. The local network that houses application services and private endpoints and this network are two different networks. The target local network’s connectivity to apps and private endpoints is made possible by a virtual private network (VPN) solution, and the jumpbox solution’s public IP address is specified in the management network. After establishing a VPN connection, users connect to the jumpbox solution’s private IP address in the management network and establish remote connectivity to the target application. As an alternative, some businesses publish public IP addresses on the VMs hosting the target applications and deploy apps to the management network, allowing users to login to the application using RDP and SSH. However, by scaling out public IP addresses to any VM requiring remote user connectivity, this strategy increases the potential attack surface. At the end of the day, business workloads require trusted and secure access.
For VMs installed on any local or peer Azure Virtual Networks, Azure Bastion is a fully managed jumpbox-as-a-service that offers secure RDP and SSH connectivity. A transport layer security (TLS) connection is made straight from the Azure Portal to the public IP address of Azure Bastion to create remote connectivity. Following that, Azure Bastion creates RDP and SSH connections to the target VMs’ private IP addresses in the local or peering virtual network. Azure Bastion enables remote connectivity to both the pre-existing and newly configured VMs utilising a single public IP address as users add more VMs to their Virtual Networks. In order to create a more secure access perimeter, users can setup Network Security Groups (NSGs) to limit incoming public access to the public IP address of Azure Bastion.
A solo deployment that controls connectivity between nearby or connected Virtual Networks
Hub-and-spoke topologies are frequently used by contemporary businesses for developing application services. Applications are deployed to connected spoke networks using this type of architecture, which centralises management of Network Virtual Appliances (NVAs) and jumpbox services in a hub network. The target spoke application is then reached after passing through the hub network.
Customers can continue to provide remote connectivity from an Azure hub-and-spoke architecture using Azure Bastion and Virtual Network peering. Customers can configure application VMs on the spoke networks and deploy Azure Bastion to a hub Virtual Network. Azure Bastion can manage RDP and SSH connection to VMs inside the local hub Virtual Network and across the peer to VMs in the application spoke Virtual Networks once the customer configures Virtual Network peering between the hub and spoke networks.
Ability to scale infrastructure
Utilizing platform-as-a-service (PaaS) infrastructure scalability capabilities is one of the main reasons businesses are moving mission-critical workloads to the cloud. Customers may specifically scale-up and scale-out infrastructure with the touch of a button to handle any increase in demand or traffic to their applications. Furthermore, the amount of traffic passing through the hub network grows as customers add more applications to spoke networks. In order to handle the increased workload, the architecture enabling NVAs and jumpbox services deployed to the hub network must be scalable.
Manual host scaling is now supported by Azure Bastion. Customers can set up between 2 and 50 scale units while deploying a Standard Azure Bastion. After the resource is created, customers may also control the number of instances in the Azure Bastion configuration blade. The protocols RDP and SSH are based on usage. Customers may need to scale out additional instances to support application connections, depending on the quantity of concurrent sessions and the workloads of each session. In particular, users may need to scale out host instances to sustain Azure Bastion connectivity when they either deploy more apps to the spoke network(s) or peer more spoke networks to the hub network. Ultimately, Azure Bastion can handle distant connectivity globally thanks to the inclusion of both Virtual Network peering and host scalability.
Monitoring and alerting for metrics
Near-real-time metrics, monitoring, and alerting on the performance, availability, and traffic of infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) resources are another important advantage of cloud services. In order to proactively identify any performance issues—and more crucially, to scale-out infrastructure services as application demand develops, prior to any potential outages—enterprises frequently monitor and enable bespoke alerting on metrics within these three areas.
Customers may establish alerting across availability, performance, and traffic metrics with Azure Bastion and Azure Monitor. Customers can use these features to monitor CPU and memory usage, session counts, and splits by host instance to determine when to scale out host instances.
Easily deploy, manage, and keep an eye on infrastructure with only a few clicks.
With these modifications to Azure Bastion, customers can now consistently manage secure remote connection to applications at scale. Cloud service providers must invest in PaaS products that make the advantages of the underlying platform available to clients as businesses continue to move their workloads to the cloud. Enterprises should eventually be able to deploy, manage, and monitor infrastructure with a single click, reallocating that work from infrastructure management to application development.
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