A while ago I wrote a rather damning article concerning my experiences trying to bring an Umbraco site to bear on the Azure platform on a budget.
Since then the landscape seems to have changed somewhat, as well explained by Darren Fergusons seminar at the Umbraco UK festival.
I have a site redesign plan underway at the moment and I'm looking forward to using some of this to try and make it work again. I'll report back when it's done!
ADDENDUM: Although the site rework is still at the design stage, if you are reading this message then you are reading it on a direct port of the original site to SQL Azure and an Azure Web Site. A handy guide to which I found at https://agebase.co.uk/blog/moving-an-umbraco-website-to-windows-azure-websites/.
We've been working with T4 templates for use with Entity Framework for a couple of years now. T4 templates are great because they actually let you write code to generate code so you can say goodbye to a load of unnecessary boilerplate.
We really like Entity Framework as an ORM tool, but where it's always fallen down has been in an ability to easilly unit test the applications that use it (particularly back when we started, before the common usage of POCOs and DbContext). In order to mitigate these problems we began work on developing a T4 template that would auto generate a repository pattern infrastrucre from the EDMX file generated by Entity Framework. You can then use the repositories for accessing data, a Repository Factory for accessing the repositories themselves and maintaining save state and all with built in interfaces that can be easilly mocked. This also allows you to add alternative data sources to the same model by adding additional classes.