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Azure IoT Edge Now Generally Available and Open Source

Microsoft announced Azure IoT Edge, its cloud-based solution for bringing local intelligence to distributed Internet of Things devices, is now generally available and open source.

By parking the source code on GitHub, Microsoft said it's giving developers more flexibility and control over edge solutions -- such as letting them modify the runtime and debug problems -- while continuing the company's commitment to the open source movement.

The fully managed Azure IoT Edge service brings cloud intelligence to edge devices through the use of artificial intelligence (AI), cloud services (including machine learning, stream analytics, SQL Server databases and more) and custom logic local to cross-platform devices, which can operate independently even when offline.

"Now devices can act immediately on real-time data -- whether it be recognizing a crack in a pipe from an aerial view or predicting equipment failure before it happens," the company said in a blog post yesterday (June 27). "As we evolve toward a world of ubiquitous computing, the design of the IoT solution spanning hardware, edge and cloud must be consistent and secure to drive real impact."

After a one-year preview period, the company is also infusing more capabilities into the solution as it goes GA. Of special interest to developers is a simplified experience that includes:

  • Broad language support for module SDKs with languages including C#, C, Node.js, Python and Java.
  • Tooling for Visual Studio Code in the form of the Azure IoT Edge extension available in the VS Code marketplace. Microsoft said it simplifies module development by helping developers code, test, debug and deploy projects all from within the editor. The extension has already been installed more than 52,000 times and has earned a perfect 5.0 rating from six developer reviewers.
  • A Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) CI/CD pipeline that helps manage the complete lifecycle of modules from development, testing, staging and deployment.

The newly GA solution also includes support for the Moby container management system, a ready-to-go ecosystem of certified edge hardware/software and security enhancements.

Those new features were added to previous functionality announced at Microsoft's recent //Build developer conference, where the company unveiled integration with Microsoft AI services, support for Kubernetes container orchestration, new partnerships, and third-party hardware integrations including DJI drones and the Qualcomm vision AI developer kit.

First-party pricing details are available here.

About the Author

David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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