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Building Simple Serverless Applications with Azure Functions

Chris Behrens

Serverless functions offer an organization a highly scalable solution with zero server maintenance required, and because their priced by consumption, the economics makes them inevitable compared to traditional server-based web architecture. We’ll follow several functions from design, to coding in Visual Studio, and then to deployment and maintenance.

Join expert Chris Behrens for an in-depth look at Azure Functions - how they work, how to create them and where they fit into your application.

What you'll learn-and how you can apply it

  • How to code an Azure function
  • The different ways to connect to and trigger your function
  • How to deploy your functions
  • The limits of Azure functions, and how to manage them

At a high-level, you will be able to:

  • Implement functions with different connection models
  • Create an Azure function that references other libraries you create
  • Deploy Azure functions from version control
  • Understand the alternatives to Azure functions for serverless architecture

This training course is for you because...

  • You’re an architect or developer looking to add serverless functions to your Azure toolbox.

Prerequisites

  • You should have a good grasp of C# or Javascript, and have some experience with software development.

Recommended preparation:

Recommended follow-up:

About your instructor

  • Chris B. Behrens is a writer, speaker, and software developer, specializing in DevOps. He has been a developer and architect for more than 20 years focusing on small to medium size companies and the development changes they face. He focuses on his flavor of Fear Based Development, whereby a developer ranks their tasks in descending order of anxiety, and how to tackle them in that order. Chief among these anxiety-inducing processes is software deployment.

Schedule

The timeframes are only estimates and may vary according to how the class is progressing

Introduction (30 minutes)

  • Presentation: Serverless functions are inevitable; The economics of serverless applications; The ultimate web architecture
  • Discussion: How might this apply to your current business? Where is the server?
  • Q&A

Getting Started with Azure Functions (30 minutes)

  • Presentation: GET Hello World; Authenticated GET Hello World; A simple reminder function
  • Discussion: What do chron-type functions replace? Why are they better?
  • Discussion: What are some of the trade-offs of dependencies versus in-line code?
  • Exercise: Creating a Hello World function and calling it in the browser
  • Q&A
  • Break (5 mins)

Challenges in Azure Functions (30 minutes)

  • Presentation: State; Dependency Management; Troubleshooting
  • Exercises: Unit-testing a local function and investigating a function with Kudu
  • Discussions: What’s so bad about state? Where to test? When to test?
  • Q&A

Advanced Azure Functions (45 minutes)

  • Presentation: All the other trigger formats; Function binding
  • Exercise: Chaining the result of an Azure function to blob storage
  • Discussion: What are some scenarios in your work that could be chained?
  • Q&A
  • Break (5 mins)

The Grand Tour (30 minutes)

  • Presentation: The design
  • Discussions: Where’s the server (part 2)? and how to add a database to this architecture
  • Q&A (5 minutes)

Wrap-up (15 minutes)

  • Presentation: Serverless alternatives to Azure functions and when to use them; The current Azure functions features backlog
  • Q&A