Create custom images to use within Azure Lab Services

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Tech Community.

When you set up a new lab in Azure Lab Services, one of the first steps is to choose the image.  An image contains the operating system, software applications, files, and settings that are installed on a VM. There are two types of images that you can use when you set up a new lab:

  • Marketplace images that are prebuilt by Microsoft for use within Azure. These images have either Windows or Linux installed and may also include software applications. For example, the Data Science Virtual Machine image includes installed deep learning frameworks and tools.
  • Custom images that are created by your institution’s IT department and\or other educators. You can create both Windows and Linux custom images and have the flexibility to install Microsoft and 3rd party applications based on your unique needs. You also can add files, change application settings, and more.

In this blog post, we’ll show ways that you can create a custom image and use it to set up new labs.


The first step to use custom images, is to attach a Shared Image Gallery to your lab account.  Read the following articles for more information:

Next, you have several options to create Windows and Linux custom images:

  • The simplest way to create a custom image is to save the image from a lab’s template virtual machine (VM) using Azure Lab Services' portal.  Both IT departments and educators can create custom images using a lab’s template VM.
  • For more advanced scenarios, IT departments may find it helpful to create custom images outside of Azure Lab Services using either an Azure VM or a VHD from your physical lab environment.

To decide which option is best for your scenario, read the following article:

Once you decide the best approach, refer to the following articles that provide detailed steps to create a custom image and save it to a Shared Image Gallery:

Thanks for reading!

~Azure Lab Services’ team

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