Modex is proud to announce that it has integrated its flagship product, the Blockchain Database (BCDB) trademark solution, with Microsoft Azure, one of the most important cloud computing providers available on the market. Through this technological integration, Modex offers its middleware software as an IaaS offering on the major public clouds for clients and potential clients who wish to deploy a Modex BCDB infrastructure on their Azure cloud subscriptions to set up a hybrid infrastructure that fuses blockchain technology with the cloud.

The new Modex BCDB release is built upon the foundation set up earlier this year when Modex entered the Microsoft for Startups program that gave the company access to Microsoft partners who guided Modex during its integration with Azure and some of its services. All the hard work done by the Modex development team during the last few months crystallized in our latest release, where the main focus was placed on ensuring a smooth integration with the Azure Marketplace. This means that Modex BCDB is now available on the Azure Marketplace as an IaaS offering.

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What does the Modex-Azure integration mean for companies looking for a cloud solution?

Deploying blockchain-based solutions on-premise is a difficult and costly process that requires companies to build an infrastructure from the ground up. Due to the large overhead involved in building and deploying a new IT infrastructure, a significant segment of companies from the market cannot access blockchain solutions or other distributed solutions.

The rapid expansion of cloud computing and IaaS services over the past decade has provided an answer to many issues that revolve around building and maintaining a costly on-prem infrastructure. To remove the financial barrier and to streamline the overall deployment process, Modex has integrated its BCDB solution with the most popular public cloud infrastructure, Microsoft Azure, as a plug and play solution on their marketplace, which makes data integrity and immutability readily available, without requiring companies and businesses to support all the costs associated with an on-prem infrastructure.

Custom cloud infrastructure

Azure subscribers are now able to access and deploy with the push of a button a blockchain database infrastructure that enhances data security and data management operations. Modex enables companies to customize and deploy from a wizard interface the network infrastructure in a matter of minutes, compared to the weeks and even months required for deployment by other solutions present on the market.

Once a client configures the network according to the business logic of their company, Modex begins to set up the infrastructure and virtual machines according to the network configurations chosen by the client. Keep in mind that Modex does not provide the hardware infrastructure, the cloud provider is the entity that provides the necessary computational resources. Modex will coordinate the client’s configuration settings while also providing the blockchain and database technological layer.

Modex BCDB, a new player in the Azure Marketplace

The new Modex BCDB – Azure integration sees the BCDB product published as a solution template on the Azure Marketplace. A solution template is a powerful tool that helps Azure subscribers set up multiple services and infrastructures connected by networks while also acting as a mechanism through which beneficiaries can install and configure a collection of machines. In short, it’s a more complex solution that helps Azure subscribers quickly deploy multiple services.

The main benefit of a solution template stems from its ability to significantly reduce deployment time by relying on automation and scripting. Another important benefit stems from its ability to remove or hide complexities through an abstraction layer that significantly simplifies the interaction with the deployment process.

Through the Modex BCDB solution template, Azure subscribers are just a few clicks away from setting up and configuring their own Modex BCDB infrastructure. Once a set of minimal information has been passed in the installation interface, and the deploy button is hit, the Azure platform takes over all the heavy lifting and allocates all the hardware required for the backend processes. After the automated setup process concludes, the beneficiaries have a fully deployed BCDB infrastructure and workbench at their disposal that can be used to add a blockchain backend to their applications.

Automate everything for the integrations

As expected, the integration journey was accompanied by its own set of challenges that needed to be addressed. Dragos Rautu, Modex CTO, and the mind behind the recent integration is the ideal candidate to describe the integration journey and the challenges faced during the development process.

“The integration with the Azure Marketplace was quite a challenge because, in the initial stages of the Modex BCDB project, we mainly targeted on-prem deployment which varied depending on the configuration. The moment we set our sights on Azure, we knew that we had to automate almost everything, including all the processes that we used to perform manually. Of course, during development, we encountered certain areas that needed to be re-engineered to fall in line with the automation facilitated by Azure. During our testing phase, we have researched multiple cloud infrastructures and concluded that Azure has the most complex deployment user interface which made it an ideal platform for what we had in mind for Modex BCDB.”

Automation challenges v2

“There were, indeed, a number of challenges. Cloud providers in general offer a basic set of configurations and functionalities. It’s impossible to provide an exhaustive list of configurations for each potential use case. So we had to tackle each issue at a time. The biggest challenge revolved around creating an automated user interface that required the least possible input from the user. This was certainly a task that demanded a bit of out of the box thinking on our part – how to achieve a balance between what information the user needs to introduce and what parameters we can automate to set up the network. Basically, how to make the user interface more user friendly through automation. In the initial stages of development, users had to fill a large form to set up their BCDB infrastructure which would have been too cumbersome and tedious to complete. After three or four rounds of brainstorming, we reached a format where users only need to fill in the information required by default by Azure and only three-four fields required for the BCDB nodes configuration”, adds Dragos Rautu.

Modex BCDB will be the bridge that connects multiple Azure solutions

The integration with the Azure Marketplace represents the first step in the Modex strategy, as the company has set a series of strategic goals for 2021. The initial focus for the following months will be placed on expanding our technological reach by integrating with a suite of Azure SaaS offerings like:

  • Azure CosmosDB – Microsoft’s proprietary globally-distributed, NoSQL, multi-model database service
  • Azure SQL Server – a high-performing, unified SQL platform with limitless scalability and intelligentperformance and security
  • Azure Blockchain – a fully managed ledger service that gives users the ability to grow and operate blockchain networks at scale in Azure
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After the above-mentioned integrations have successfully concluded, the stage is set for the final stage in the Modex plan, to transform the BCDB product into a complementary solution that connects the Azure database services with Azure Blockchain. As such, besides the functionalities of the blockchain database solution, Modex will offer Azure subscribers the ability to connect through a plug-and-play approach Cosmos DB, Azure Server, and Azure Blockchain to tailor their own unique infrastructure, customized to suit their business needs. By acting as a bridge that connects multiple Azure solutions, Modex BCDB will answer the needs of Azure clients who wish to customize their businesses by joining multiple Azure services, without needing to invest time and other resources for developing a custom connection.

About Modex

Modex innovates in order to solve the last mile adoption problem of digital technology in society. Modex offers fully integrated data protection solutions and aims to make digital technologies user-friendly for organizations and people. Modex is a leading Blockchain Database provider offering real data integrity, log immutability, and data security to help companies protect valuable information.