We are trying to figure out how to direct PHP/WordPress memcache calls to our Shared Cache service, but what few examples we can find about memcache support in the 1.7 SDK all refer to the Cache role and not the Shared Cache.
Is there memcache support for Shared Cache or not?
The shared cache does not support of memcached protocol.
You can use the Windows Azure Caching (Preview). The Windows Azure Caching (Preview) support memcached protocol.
If, you choose PHP on the "Windows Azure Web Sites", You must select Dedicated Role Caching and create a cache worker role (dedicated role caching) on the Windows Azure Cloud Services.
Simply put, Shared Cache not being an option combined with Extra Small VMs not being an option for a Dedicated Cache make this "upgrade" to caching useless for our needs.
Our current Shared Cache usage with our Azure apps doesn't even exceed 1MB at any time, so being able to use the excess with WordPress would have been perfect. Of course such small cache requirements also means that setting up two dedicated Small VMs for cache would cost almost 4x what our current Shared Cache does.
The answer we want is "both". We are currently using Shared Cache with Cloud Services, but we were looking to try moving our WordPress sites to Windows Azure Websites and use the same Shared Cache with them.
Since posting the original question, we had decided to try establishing a pair of Small instances running Dedicated Cache which we would then share among our various Cloud Services and Windows Azure Websites. But after being unable to determine what endpoints to add I am coming to the conclusion that "Dedicated Cache" is actually Dedicated to a single Cloud Service and can't actually serve as a Dedicated Cache option for all of our Azure applications at once??
The more we dig into this, the more we question how this is supposed to make sense for our company...
Why don't you try some other distributed cache provider like AppFabric or NCache. AppFabric is a free cache provider by MS while NCache is an enterprise level distributed cache for .NET and Java and also provides a fast and reliable storage for ASP.NET and JSP Sessions.