Served in the army in Turkestan in 1892. Took part in the RussoJapanese war, 1905. Chief-of-staff of the Caucasian military district in 1912.
Commander-in-chief of the Caucasian Army, 1915. After the February Revolution 1917, commander-in-chief of the Caucasian front. Dismissed by the Provisional Government in April 1917.
Went underground in Petrograd during the October Revolution 1917. Moved to Finland in autumn 1918, then to Estonia. Appointed commander of local White detachments by Admiral Kolchak.
In October 1919, made a surprising bid to capture Petrograd, drawing upon himself very large reserves of the Red Army. Forced to retreat with his North-Western Army to Estonia, where he was interned. Emigrated to France.