How to – Connect to an Azure VM

If you’ve just created your first Azure VM and are struggling to connect to it, this post should offer some help. I’ll cover connecting to both a Windows VM and a Linux VM, so RDP and SSH.

Connect to a Linux VM in Azure

To connect over SSH, you’ll need a client. A commonly used client is Putty, but you can use whichever you like. The first step is to know the details of your VM that are required to make a connection. When you built your VM, you would have created an administrator username and either a password or SSH key, ensure you have those to hand.

Next, you will need the IP or DNS name of the VM to connect to it. You can get this via the Azure Portal. If you click on the VM you want to connect to, it will by default open the Overview blade. From here, you will be able to copy the IP or DNS as required.

VM Overview settings

Then, using Putty, or a similar client, you can use that IP or DNS name, and port 22, to access SSH

PuTTY terminal settings

Once your session opens, you’ll be prompted for the credentials mentioned earlier.

Connect to a Windows VM in Azure

To connect via RDP, you’ll need to be using a machine that has an RDP client. This comes built into Windows. Next, you need to know the details of your VM that are required to make a connection. When you built your VM, you would have created an administrator username and a password, ensure you have those to hand.

Next, login to the Azure Portal, click the VM you want to connect to. This will open the Overview blade. From here you can click the Connect button. This will generate an RDP file for you to download and use.

Open the RDP file once downloaded. You may see some warnings relative to certificates, these can be ignored. Click connect.

Screenshot of a warning about an unknown publisher.

You will be prompted for credentials, these are the credentials as mentioned earlier. Once entered, you may see some warnings relative to certificates, these can be ignored.

Troubleshooting

If you’re having problems establishing a connection to your VM, first check if there is an NSG assigned to the VM or subnet the VM resides in. If there is, this NSG will require a rule to allow RDP/SSH access. By default, all connections via Public IP are blocked.

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