After coming across My Azure Dashboard over the weekend, my interest was piqued enough to start digging into the Windows Store to see what else was available for managing Windows Azure from a Windows 8.1 computer or device. With all the investment in Windows Azure and Windows 8.1, you'd think that Microsoft would be developing easier methods for Windows Azure customers to access data and manage their services. Fortunately, 3rd party developers have been active enough so that there are a few options.

I've yet to find an all-in-one solution for managing Windows Azure on Windows 8.1, except of course, the Microsoft's web-based Windows Azure administration console. The Windows Store offers tidbits of value strewn across many apps. Some the apps available offer very similar functions, however each does so in unique ways. So, you really have to cobble together your own solution by locating those you find most valuable, and creating a Windows 8.1 Start Screen group filled with your favorites.

The following are the best of the ones I found. There were a few more, but offered a lot less value than those listed below. I've linked each app title to the app's Windows Store residence so you can jump out and check them out yourself.

Windows Azure Dashboard - Shows all Azure services' healthy status and incident history. Supports showing service status in a Live Tile.

Windows Azure Status - Quick and easy utility for viewing the world wide status of Windows Azure services.

Azure Diagnostics Viewer - Provides diagnostic information logged into WadLogsTable by Windows Azure diagnostic services. Supports multiple accounts.

Azure Studio - Allows easy management of files stored in the Cloud including access to Windows Azure blog storage, background uploading and downloading facilities, and file search.

Azure Ticker – Provides a quick view (also supported through a Live Tile) of your Windows Azure account balance.

Azure Storage Monitor - Offers access to visualize Windows Azure Storage Analytics data, including graphs that provide rich data insights into your blob, table, and queue traffic. Supports exporting of the data into an Excel spreadsheet which automatically includes the raw data, pivot tables, and charts.

Azure SAS Generator - Generates Shared Access Signatures (SAS) for Windows Azure storage blob containers, blobs, tables, and queues. These SAS query strings can then be copied to the clipboard so that they can easily be distributed to others granting them secure access to the storage resource.

AzureDash - Views Cloud services, roles for each Cloud service, and supports multiple subscriptions.

My Azure Dashboard - Enables the management of Azure virtual machines. Monitor the status of virtual machines right on your screen and also start or stop VM’s.

Rest Azured - A simple app to show Windows Azure messages directly on the Windows 8.1 lock-screen. Also supports a Live Tile and Toast Notifications when monitored services change.