For many years I’m developing PHP applications which are running on virtual hosts in some datacenter, which was great since there was no better alternative.
In 2012 I was invited by Microsoft to attend a session given by Josh Holmes about their new cloud infrastructure called Windows Azure. Within fifteen minutes I knew this would change the world of PHP forever!
Back in those times, cloud providers were emphasizing on running virtual machines, similar to the infrastructure that many already had, but now in the cloud. The biggest advantage the cloud offered was elastic infrastructure on a global scale. In other words you had the option to add more machines when needed and remove them again later, in one or more regions around the world.
Even though this flexibility was a strong selling point, you still had to maintain the infrastructure yourself. Windows Azure introduced their platform as a service (PaaS) flagship web services: a server with web services maintained by Microsoft where I could “drop” my PHP code and become operational within minutes.
I loved this so much, I needed to share my experiences with the world. I started speaking at user group events first, later I appeared at conferences talking about the awesomeness of PHP on Azure.
Today Microsoft Azure offers hundreds of solutions to build complex systems, but their app services (as web services are called now) remain my favorite service. Even with the Kubernetes and Docker solutions they provide, the App Service remains my favorite solution.
Unfortunately people still struggle with their PHP apps running on Azure. Through this blog I want to share my knowledge and examples people can use. This way I can contribute back to the awesome communities in PHP and the Azure world.