Azure Portal, CLI, and PowerShell

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Interacting with Azure

There are 3 ways you can interact with Azure: the Portal, the Azure CLI, and the Azure PowerShell module. A good engineer or architect should be proficient in at least two of these tools, so they can optimize their workflow for any situation.


  1. Azure Portal
    • This is the graphical user interface (GUI) for Azure
    • You access the portal from
    • The portal is great for learning about Azure, or doing one-time tasks
      • Compared to other options, clicking around in the Azure portal can be a little slow
      • The portal is also great for visualizing your environment
      • Very useful for most day-to-day work
    • Automation is not supported with the Portal
  2. Azure Cloud Shell / Azure CLI
    • The Azure CLI is a command-line program that allows you to do pretty much everything that can be done in the Portal, but through the use of Azure commands
    • This can be much quicker than the portal, since you do not have to wait for pages to load and click around
    • This is also great for users who want to create Bash scripts and put the Azure CLI commands into the script, which is how many tasks are automated
    • Azure Cloud Shell is the implementation of Azure CLI that runs in the Azure portal, so you can run Azure CLI commands from a browser-based command line
  3. Azure PowerShell Module
    • If you are a fan of PowerShell, the Azure PowerShell module is for you
    • It has the same advantages as the Azure CLI, but instead of CLI commands, you will be using PowerShell cmdlets
      • The Azure PowerShell module still is great for repetitive tasks, is generally quicker than the Portal, and can be put into a script (a PowerShell script, of course)