One of the features shipped with Windows Azure SDK for Visual Studio 2010 is the Azure Storage emulator. This little add-on enables you to run your very own Azure Cloud storage service locally while developing, and needless to say this makes everything quite a lot simpler.
When first initialized, the emulator creates a database in Microsoft SQL Server Express (which you can change to your local SQL Server if you want). It also sets up three services to emulate the Blob, Queue and Table types on different ports:
If you receive the following error message when attempting to start one of the services (typically the Blob service)
Process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process
it actually means that the port is taken, not a file. Run “Netstat /a” from your command prompt to find the culprit that’s taking up your precious port (which will probably be your torrent client – don’t tell RIAA!).