Muddling my way through figuring out how to install Ignition to an Azure VM. I was an MCSE on Windows NT 4.0 and a few things have changed since then. I have an adequately sized VM available, am hip to scripting and PowerShell, just can’t find the right script format (all the online tutorials show how to install the IIS extension, not a third-party app like Ignition). Any help appreciated, I’m surely not the first to do this…
Here is a high-level list of what I have accomplished so far. While it has been asserted by some that the vast majority of these projects are still taking place on-prem, it’s only a matter of time before we see more cloud-based installations. This is an Ignition forum, not an Azure forum, but as IT and OT integrate, many IT departments will want to host/support these gateways on familiar architecture.
In Azure most administrative tasks are handled with PowerShell scripts and templates. I plan to do all that later, but in the meantime here is the manual hack version:
- Open an Azure account - you can do this for free at first but as you add services and extend past 30 days, know that some will accrue actual fees while running. Luckily MSFT make it very easy to see current and forecast charges by month through the Azure Portal, with which you will become very familiar. (Lots of free training on Microsoft Learn as well). I recommend creating a common resource account as the first step in the portal for all the Azure services that will support your Ignition installation.
- Consult the Inductive Automation server sizing guide (excellent resource) and determine the specs you’ll need for your server. Go to the Azure Portal and build a VM that meets or exceeds those. Note: your next instinct will be to open a browser, surf out to Inductive’s website and download the gateway install. Azure disallows that. They disallow downloading ANYTHING to a VM. For good reason but that discussion is for another time & place. Just take my word for it. You can surf there, you can click on all the links you want, it will stare back at you in passive-aggressive silence.
- Create a storage account in the Portal (assign it to your resource group), and then create a File Share under that storage account.
- Download the Azure Storage Explorer tool and connect it to your VM
- From your workstation (not the VM), download the Ignition install (maybe grab an updated browser of your choice while you’re on the Internet) and save them locally
- User Azure Storage Explorer to Connect to your VM (middle button on navigation bar) - this will open a script you can copy and run locally on the VM (I used RDP) and it will map a drive to the File Share on the Storage Account
- Upload the Ignition installer and browser executable to the file share using Azure Storage Explorer, then go back to your RDP session and run the install locally.
When I get time to script all this out using PowerShell I will come back and share that. Hope this helps somebody avoid a lot of frustration and time!