The Ultimate Windows Azure Development VM

As a Software Developer we have many options when it comes to the tools that we put in our tool belt. One thing that I’ve found exceptionally useful over the years are Virtual Machines, not only Virtual Machines, but having a tailored environment to what you’re Developing.

With my focus on the Cloud I thought it would be useful to continue the trend of Building out a Virtualized Environment that’s Tailored to my work that I’m doing in the Windows Azure Platform. I’ve compiled a list of the Tools and SDKs in which I have found the most useful while working on projects for Windows Azure.

Operating System

  • Windows 7 [SP1]
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 [SP1]

Note: Windows Server 2008 R2 is a Handy OS to have on a Virtual Machine within your environment if you expect to have to use the VM Role in Windows Azure.

Desktop Backgrounds

Windows Add-Ons

Development Environment




Assessment & Optimization

Management & Debugging



Code Samples


This article also appears on SyntaxC4's Blog.