• Sat. Jun 3rd, 2023

Introducing Microsoft Dev Box; a Cloud-Powered Developer Workstation

ByPeter Oluka

May 24, 2022

One thing developers need is the flexibility to set up and maintain their workstation, but even ‘small changes’ can unexpectedly poison one’s dev environments, interrupting workflow and costing hours to undo.

Today, at Microsoft Build Conference 2022, Microsoft Dev Box, a new cloud service that provides developers with secure, ready-to-code developer workstations for hybrid teams of any size, was announced.

Microsoft Dev Box empowers developers to focus on the code only they can write, making it easy for them to access the tools and resources they need without worrying about workstation configuration and maintenance.

“Dev teams preconfigure Dev Boxes for specific projects and tasks, enabling devs to get started quickly with an environment that’s ready to build and run their app in minutes. At the same time, Microsoft Dev Box ensures unified management, security, and compliance stay in the hands of IT by leveraging Windows 365 to integrate Dev Boxes with Intune and Microsoft Endpoint Manager”, says Anthony Cangialosi of Microsoft Developer Division.

Transforming the developer workstation

Contemporary dev workstations come with a plethora of challenges. New developers can spend days setting up a working environment and weeks before they make their first commit.

Microsoft Dev Box
| Source: news.microsoft.com

Senior developers often work across multiple projects that can bring conflicting dependencies and bog down their dev workstation. And we’ve all made a change that unexpectedly left us with a broken environment.

With Microsoft Dev Box, dev teams create and maintain Dev Box images with all the tools and dependencies their devs need to build and run their applications. Teams can include their application source code and nightly built binaries, enabling devs to immediately start running and understanding the code without having to wait for long re-builds.

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Developers stay in control of their Dev Boxes with a developer portal that enables them to create and delete their Dev Boxes for any of their projects.

Developers can create Dev Boxes to experiment on a proof-of-concept, keep their projects separate, or even parallelize tasks across multiple Dev Boxes to avoid bogging down their primary environment.

For devs working on legacy apps, they can maintain Dev Boxes for older versions of an application to quickly create an environment that can reproduce and diagnose critical customer issues as they emerge.

Microsoft Dev Box supports any developer IDE, SDK, or internal tool that runs on Windows. Dev Boxes can target any development workload you can build from a Windows desktop and are particularly well-suited for desktop, mobile, IoT, and gaming. You can even build cross-platform apps using Windows Subsystem for Linux.

And because Microsoft Dev Boxes are hosted in the Microsoft cloud, you can access them from anywhere: Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, or your web browser.

Microsoft Dev Box ensures developers always have the right tools and resources based on project, task, and even role. When building Dev Boxes, dev teams select from a range of SKUs to define the right level of compute for each project and instantly scale up aging physical hardware.

Microsoft Dev Box
| Source: news.microsoft.com

Thanks to Azure Active Directory integration, teams can rapidly onboard new team members by assigning them to Azure Active Directory groups that grant access to the Dev Boxes they need for their projects.



Peter Oluka

Peter Oluka is the Editor, TechEconomy. Email: Peter.Oluka@TechEconomy.NG

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