SharePoint Development VM on Azure
If you are a working with SharePoint chances are you have an MSDN subscription and that is good news. You get a free USD200 worth of Windows Azure credit the first month you sign up for the trial and monthly credit according to your subscription level as per the following MSDN offer.
SharePoint 2013 demands hardware that many does not have on their local machine, yes? So naturally one would think about having a development VM that one can simply connect to, and for that you have come to the right place. Recently Microsoft have made available Visual Studio 2013 preview and with that, we see that we can now create a Visual Studio Ultimate 2013 Preview VM on Azure that apparently has SharePoint 2013 Trial on it.
If you have not already, sign up for Windows Azure Trial or activate your Windows Azure subscription from your MSDN subscription benefits.
If this is your first time with Windows Azure, you will need to configure a few basic things to be able to provision your VM properly. For this, Keith Mayer have an excellent blog entry that tells you what you need. Make sure you follow the instructions in his blog before creating your Development VM.
To create your VM, simply click on the New icon at the bottom of the Windows Azure management portal page then choose Compute > Virtual machine > From Gallery
Pick Visual Studio Ultimate 2013 Preview from the list and give it a name. I recommend choosing the Extra Large instance for this, although Large instance should be the minimum.
After the virtual machine is provisioned, simply go to Virtual Machines (from left menu), then pick your newly created VM and click on Connect on the bottom of the page to download an RDP file. Log in with the credentials you specified when creating the VM and have a good time.