What database administrators need to know about Azure SQL

For database administrators, it’s important to find a system that’s feature-laden in a way that delivers optimal value to the end-users. That’s why the best solution for most organizations is to use Microsoft Azure SQL. It has a unique blend of features that allow for greater organizational effectiveness and efficiency.

Whether you’re building a new database or migrating a legacy database to a new program, Azure SQL is perfect for you.

The question is: why should your organization use Azure SQL? Let’s take a closer look at some of the advantages of using it by running through many of the program’s many features.

Implementation options

First, Azure SQL offers some versatile implementation options for getting started. The option you choose will depend on where you currently are in your Azure SQL experience. Depending on the level of sophistication you have with the product, your options may vary.

  • Looking to migrate your workloads onto Azure Virtual Machines (VM)? SQL server is the option for you.
  • With Azure SQL Managed Instance, you can update the applications you have as well as tap into hybrid flexibility.
  • You can also put the infrastructure needed in place to support your modern cloud applications by using Azure SQL Database.

No matter how you choose to implement Azure SQL, you’ll have a whole host of features at your disposal. Below is a brief summary of the features you can expect to benefit from using Azure SQL:

Security

Protecting your data is paramount for an organization with any kind of digital presence. Whether you need to safeguard proprietary data or personally identifiable information, having a secure database is critical for keeping your information’s integrity intact.

Azure SQL offers all the tools you’ll need for a comprehensive security posture. It has cryptographic verification. It also has real-time threat protection capabilities to help you navigate threats and assess your vulnerabilities as soon as possible. Azure SQL has security controls such as encryption and access management as well to keep the right people in and the wrong people out. Finally, Azure SQL’s compliance coverage will keep your security tools up to date.

Scalability

As your business grows, your database requirements may change as well. Azure SQL allows you to adapt and scale your database needs as the needs of your organization evolve. You’ll be able to scale your capabilities on a timeline that works for you and your team.

Serverless

Azure SQL’s fully managed service eschews hardware for a more flexible, serverless approach. Forget dedicating physical space you don’t have for computer storage. Azure SQL supports cloud applications.

Great availability

A service can have all the capabilities in the world, but without reliability, it will fail to serve you. When it comes to your database, you’ll want to be sure you can access it the majority of the time without disruptions or outages. Azure SQL offers great availability with minimal chances of disruption.

Regularly recurring tasks such as patches, updates, and data backups are all automated by Azure. It also has remedies in place for spontaneous network outages or failures. If you use retry logic within your app, your database will experience minimal downtime.

The bottom line is that a database is only as good as its ability to keep you connected to your data. Azure SQL has plenty of ways to keep your data available no matter what external circumstances might occur.

Backup and recovery

For most organizations, their data is the lifeblood of their business. So what happens when disaster strikes and that data is compromised? Without the right protection in place, it can be catastrophic for your organization. Azure SQL databases rely on SQL Server engine technology to provide data backup and restoration services. These measures provide you with the safety and security of knowing a disaster won’t take you back to square one. Azure SQL’s redundancy offers regularly scheduled backups, ensuring you access your data after an incident occurs.

Automatic tuning

You’ll also want to optimize your database’s performance, and Azure SQL gives you the ability to do just that. With automatic tuning, you’ll always have the best performance available. Azure SQL has a highly adaptable performance posture, enabling you to get the most out of your database without having to manually adjust or monitor your performance settings.

Monitoring and analytics

One of the most time-consuming aspects of your IT operations can be manually monitoring the performance of your various systems. Azure SQL cuts down on this, providing you with a comprehensive portal that allows you to monitor and track performance across all of your Azure SQL databases and other virtual services.

You’ll also have access to a host of analytical tools. This type of data is critical to making sure your organization’s IT operations are operating with maximum efficiency. With a single page, Azure SQL gives you a holistic view of all of your SQL resources. This includes your Azure SQL databases, the server hosting them, as well as any SQL Managed Instances or your SQL Server on Azure VMs. 

On-Demand

Because Azure SQL offers such a versatile and comprehensive suite of services, it can often seem overwhelming having to sift through everything to find specific data. SQL On-Demand offers you more insight into your data with the ability to make tailored queries to get you the information you need when you need it.

Azure SQL is the database solution you need

Because of the features described above, it’s clear that Azure SQL offers a better database solution than any other option available. Azure SQL has solutions that can be customized and applied to a variety of organizational types and sizes, scaled up or down depending on what you need.

With this in mind, it only makes sense for your team to migrate its legacy database services to Azure SQL. The main challenge is determining how to navigate these migrations. While it may seem daunting at first, having the right partner in place to guide you through the process helps you overcome any obstacles, focusing on getting the most out of Azure SQL.

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