Azure Automation DSC Overview

Azure Automation DSC is an Azure service that allows you to write, manage, and compile PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) configurations, import DSC Resources, and assign configurations to target nodes, all in the cloud.

Why use Azure Automation DSC

Azure Automation DSC provides several advantages over using DSC outside of Azure.

Built-in pull server

Azure Automation provides a DSC pull server so that target nodes automatically receive configurations, conform to the desired state, and report back on their compliance. The built-in pull server in Azure Automation eliminates the need to set up and maintain your own pull server. Azure Automation can target virtual or physical Windows or Linux machines, in the cloud or on-premises.

Management of all your DSC artifacts

Azure Automation DSC brings the same management layer to PowerShell Desired State Configuration as Azure Automation offers for PowerShell scripting.

From the Azure portal, or from PowerShell, you can manage all your DSC configurations, resources, and target nodes.

Screen shot of the Azure Automation blade

Import reporting data into Log Analytics

Nodes that are managed with Azure Automation DSC send detailed reporting status data to the built-in pull server. You can configure Azure Automation DSC to send this data to your Log Analytics workspace. To learn how to send DSC status data to your Log Analytics workspace, see Forward Azure Automation DSC reporting data to Log Analytics.

Introduction video

Prefer watching to reading? Have a look at the following video from May 2015, when Azure Automation DSC was first announced.


While the concepts and life cycle discussed in this video are correct, Azure Automation DSC has progressed a lot since this video was recorded. It is now generally available, has a much more extensive UI in the Azure portal, and supports many additional capabilities.

Next steps