Microsoft Azure is cool. It's an easy way to get an IoT project off the ground. The Azure Sphere Starter Kit is a great place to begin too. However, getting to that easy part is a journey. I've put together this guide to help people get started with a "hello word" kind of IoT project. I will step you all though the circuitous procedure of setting up a Azure account all the way through testing the project.


The project was a simple idea: detect vibration and send an alert. I want to do something similar to my Washing Machine Texter project. However, just getting a test version off the ground had a lot of steps that I want people do easily navigate first.


Section 1: Update Azure Sphere, Authenticate Against Microsoft Azure Active Directory and connect Azure Sphere to the Network (You need to do it on updated Windows 10).


1.1. You will need to use Windows 10 to run an Azure project. I used the trial of Microsoft Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC. I went here:

Choose the LTSC iso. I chose LTSC because I didn't want to deal with a lot of updates to the OS while I was developing. But, feel free to use any version you want. You will just need to update to the most recent version.

1.1.a. If you do not have a Microsoft account, you will need one.


1.2. You will need Visual Studio to install the Azure Sphere SDK and develop applications. You can use Community (free) Edition. Just go to and install Visual Studio IDE (Community will be OK).


1.3. After downloading the loader here, run it and select Desktop development with C++ and Linux development with C++.


1.4. Just after installing you have to Sign in to the Visual Studio. If you do not have an account you can create a new one.


At this point, I recommend creating a spreadsheet for all the accounts and passwords you will be creating over the course of this guide.



1.5 If you will be creating a new account, please create a new Organization Account (Azure Active Directory) - it is a must for Azure Sphere and you can create it here:

Please use the CALL ME option. Sometimes Text Message doesn’t work.


1.6. After creating a new account (or using your old one) please log in to Visual Studio:


1.7. At this moment you can close Visual Studio and you can download and install the Azure Sphere SDK Preview for Visual Studio from

TAP network devices will be installed during this process.

Installation time can take the same or even longer than Visual Studio.

Please remember to have all the updates installed.


Installing these windows should appear:


And finish with this:


1.8. Azure Sphere uses Azure Active Directory (AAD) to enforce enterprise access control. If you didn't already setup an Azure Active Directory (AAD) account, do as follows.

You need to be a Global Administrator to create Azure Sphere Tenant in your Azure Active Directory. If you are not Global Administrator or have not Azure Active Directory created you can just create it here:


1.9. After that please restart your computer and Launch Azure Sphere Developer Command Prompt:


1.10.  Type the following commends (show current version, update your device) (please log in using GLOBAL Admin your Azure Active Directory):

azsphere device show-ota-status


If you receive error “error: The device is not responding.” just ignore it

azsphere device recover


Sometimes you have to unplug and plug your Azure Sphere Device back in.

azsphere device show-ota-status


If you receive error “error: The device is not responding.” just ignore it


1.11. Log in to the Azure Active Directory, type to following command:

azsphere login


1.12. If you have more that one Azure Sphere Tenant you can select it using Azure Sphere Tenant command, if you have not any you can create one and assign the device to it:

azsphere tenant create --name AZSphereMF

azsphere device claim


azsphere device claim – this is a one-way ticket, due to the security reason you cannot change Azure Sphere Tenant of your device.


1.13. Now you can connect your device to the internet using:

azsphere device wifi scan

azsphere device wifi add --ssid fastsmsnet2 --key "1131166687"

azsphere device wifi list

azsphere device wifi show-status



If all this worked out for you, move on to Part 2.