RoleEnvironment API returning 'InstanceIndexId'
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Howard Hoffman commented
A stable Microsoft.WindowsAzure.ServiceRuntime RoleEnvironment or RoleInstance property that returns the index number of the current role instance is needed.
The Microsoft.WindowsAzure.ServiceRuntime RoleEnvironment.CurrentRoleInstance.Id property is a formatted string that includes the "index" of the running-instance where the running-instance is part of a multiple-instance Compute (for ex. Web) Role that has internal Endpoints.
The value following the last '_' (for Azure) or '.' (for Azure Emulator) is that index value in v1.3 SDK -- a number that is-the index of the running instance among other instances.
For Web Roles with multiple Virtual Applications, the "parse" algorithm might be different.
This index value is highly useful for legacy-load-distributing mechanisms being ported to Azure (but which cannot leverage Azure Storage Queues for unrelated reasons) that need to reliably divide work across multiple instances.
Note that the total number of running instances is already available in v1.3 SDK Microsoft.WindowsAzure.ServiceRuntime Role.Instances.Count contains the number of running instances across Azure.