Blockchain is deservedly taking a center stage around the globe due to the transparency and immutability it offers to an array of transactions. It is the powerful technology behind cryptocurrency; hence, numerous cryptocurrency tracing experts, traders, and lots more are paying more attention to it. In fact, many leading corporations around the world are investing in blockchain technology.

Despite the potential of blockchain technology, Microsoft ended its blockchain service a few months ago. But why did the service end? How did this affect the existing users of the Azure blockchain service? Will Microsoft offer related services in the future? These are some of the questions that will be answered in this article.

Microsoft is shutting down its azure blockchain service

You will continue to get billed while these resources exist.

Azure VM-based Quorum guidance

Use the following the steps to create transaction nodes and validator nodes.

Transaction node

A transaction node has two components. Tessera is used for the private transactions and Geth is used for the Quorum application.

Validator nodes require only the Geth component.

Tessera

  1. Install Java 11. For example, apt install default-jre.

  2. Update paths in tessera-config.json.

    Change all references of /working-dir/** to /opt/blockchain/data/working-dir/**.

  3. Update the IP address of other transaction nodes as per new IP address. HTTPS won’t work since it is not enabled in the Tessera configuration.

Microsoft to shut down azure blockchain service

Until the company does offer up an explanation — any requests for details have garnered no response – we can only assume that the decision stems from a lack of customers, increasing costs, or general streamlining.

In a note in the Azure documentation, Microsoft says simply:

On September 10, 2021, Azure Blockchain will be retired. Please migrate ledger data from Azure Blockchain Service to an alternative offering based on your development status in production or evaluation.

Microsoft has put together a guide to exporting data from Azure Blockchain Service and recommends migrating to ConsenSys Quorum Blockchain Service.

It has been suggested that the closure of Azure Blockchain Services could lead to the creation of a new blockchain service by Microsoft. This would probably be a more advanced version of the Azure Blockchain Service.
But we cannot confidently say whether this will be the reality or not.

Nonetheless, the only certainty is that users would have to migrate from Azure blockchain service to an alternative. In fact, the majority of the users migrated before the closure of the blockchain service in September 2021.
With this development, they did not have to wait endlessly for Microsoft to make up its mind on whether it would like to continue with its blockchain service or not.

Regardless of what Microsoft decides to do in the future, everyone can rest assured that blockchain technology will continue to grow.

At that time, officials said the Coco (short for “confidential consortium”) Framework was meant to work with any ledger protocol and work on any operating system and hypervisor that supports a compatible Trusted Execution Environment (TEE), or secure area of a processor. The Framework was designed to be used on-premises and/or in various vendors’ clouds, officials said.

Microsoft officials said ACL works well when users need audit logging and tracking of highly sensitive admin operations.
They suggested that healthcare, financial and retail, information technology, supply chain monitoring and any business where contracts and deeds need to be exchanged securely would all be good candidates for ACL.

I asked Microsoft if ACL should be considered the replacement for Azure Blockchain as a Service and got no direct reply.

Microsoft that the user had begun to move to other similar services.

The ConsenSys Quorum Blockchain service was the migration destination recommended by the corporation itself. Besides, users are allowed to utilize VMs to decide to manage their blockchain themselves. As Microsoft had recommended an alternative blockchain service to users, it was becoming obvious at this point that Microsoft would move away from the blockchain service.

Therefore, it didn’t come as a surprise when it was finally announced in the middle of 2021 that the service would come to an end in September of the same year.

Using ConsenSys Quorum as an option to Microsoft blockchain service

At the announcement of the end of the Microsoft blockchain technology, the intention of the corporation was not known by many individuals.

Microsoft has announced that its Azure Blockchain Service is to close down this fall. The end date for the complete closure is September 10, but the company has already put a stop on new deployments and signups.

No big announcement has been made about the closure of the service which has been around since 2015 when Microsoft partnered with ConsenSys.
The decision leaves existing users with just four months to find an alternative home for their ledgers.

See also:

  • Microsoft releases new PowerToys update with important fixes and changes
  • Microsoft releases KB5003173 cumulative update for Windows 10 20H2 and 2004
  • Time to upgrade Windows 10 as Microsoft ends support for older versions

Microsoft has not given any reason for shutting down Azure Blockchain which will inevitably lead to speculation.

export NETWORK_ID=`j q ‘.APP_SETTINGS | fromjson | .”network-id”‘ env.json` PRIVATE_CONFIG=ignore geth –config /geth/config.toml –datadir /opt/blockchain/data/working-dir/dd –networkid $NETWORK_ID –istanbul.blockperiod 5 –nodiscover –nousb –allow-insecure-unlock –verbosity 3 –txpool.globalslots 80000 –txpool.globalqueue 80000 –txpool.accountqueue 50000 –txpool.accountslots 50000 –targetgaslimit 700000000 –miner.gaslimit 800000000 –syncmode full –rpc –rpcaddr 0.0.0.0 –rpcport 3100 –rpccorsdomain ‘*’ –rpcapi admin,db,eth,debug,net,shh,txpool,personal,web3,quorum,istanbul –ws –wsaddr 0.0.0.0 –wsport 3000 –wsorigins ‘*’ –wsapi admin,db,eth,debug,net,shh,txpool,personal,web3,quorum,istanbul –mine

Upgrading Quorum

Azure Blockchain Service may be in running one of the following listed versions of Quorum.

Microsoft is shutting down its Azure Blockchain Service on September 10, 2021. Existing deployments will be supported until that date, but as of May 10 this year, no new deployments or member creation is being supported.

Microsoft’s initial foray into Azure Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) began in 2015 with an offering on the Etherum Platform with ConsenSys. In late January 2016, Microsoft made available a preview of a lab environment in Azure’s DevTest Labs so that Blockchain-related services and partners can decouple the Blockchain technology from virtual machines. Microsoft’s short-term goal for the Azure BaaS was to make available a certified blockchain marketplace.

In the interim, the focus was to add blockchain partners of all kinds, rather than trying to pick a limited number of potential winners, officials said.

Also:Bitcoin and 11 more cryptocurrencies you need to know

Blockchain is the technology that underpins the cryptocurrency Bitcoin. But many tech vendors and users felt it had far more uses beyond that.

A blockchain is a shared ledger that can store the complete transaction history of not just cryptocurrency but other kinds of records. As such, it attracted initial interest among some enterprises, especially those in banking and finance.

Microsoft ended up fielding a preview of Azure BaaS, but lately had not done much to update the service. However, Microsoft’s product page for Azure BaaS lists GE, J.P.

Joseph Lubin, ConsenSys founder and CEO Lubin welcomed the Azure refugees:

“Expanding our relationship with Microsoft helps organizations take advantage of ConsenSys Quorum and Quorum customer support to offer users an enterprise-grade managed blockchain service that can be effortlessly set-up and deployed.”

This imminent closure was given more public attention through a Twitter post on May 12 by the Azure architect Tom Kerhove.

Looks like Azure Blockchain Service is no longer a thinghttps://t.co/HX0aFYkU3I

Kudos to @TechMike2kX for finding out.

— Tom Kerkhove ☁️ (@TomKerkhove) May 12, 2021

Notably, Microsoft’s Azure Blockchain is six years old. It was developed from a sandbox-style service in 2015 on Ethereum partnering with ConsenSys.

Azure Blockchain Service to ConsenSys’ Quorum Blockchain Service, which is a managed offering on Azure that supports GoQuorum Ledger technology.

“Expanding our relationship with Microsoft helps organizations take advantage of ConsenSys Quorum and Quorum customer support to offer users an enterprise-grade managed blockchain service that can be effortlessly set-up and deployed,” said Joseph Lubin, CEO and founder of ConsenSys.

“We are excited to bring the awarding-winning Quorum product to Azure users as the next step in our collaboration with Microsoft.”

Alternatively, users can opt to self-manage their blockchains using virtual machines (VMs).

How To Migrate To An Alternative:

  • To migrate a production workload, first export your data from Azure Blockchain Service.

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