Category Archives : Database

08

Sep

View your Azure Cache for Redis data in new Visual Studio Code extension

Azure Cache for Redis is an in-memory data store that is used to power fast, scalable applications. Now in preview, you can access all the caches under your Azure subscriptions and view their data with the new Azure Cache for Redis Visual Studio Code extension.

With this new integration, you’ll be able to use Visual Studio Code to view, test, and debug your caches—in one streamlined experience. This extension enhances ease of development by eliminating the need to manually track connection and access keys to connect to your caches. Simply authenticate with your Azure account, and you’ll instantly be able to access your Azure Cache for Redis instances.

This extension supports both common configurations—clustered and non-clustered caches, as well as all Redis data types, such as strings, lists, hashes, and sets. With it, you’ll be able to filter Redis keys by match expressions. Ultimately, this extension gives you more time to focus on development, debugging, and testing your application on your terms.

Installation and usage

The Azure Cache for Redis extension can be downloaded from the Visual Studio Code Marketplace or within Visual Studio Code by searching for Azure Cache in the extension tab.

Marketplace will direct you to open

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24

Aug

Power mission-critical applications with Azure Database for PostgreSQL

In our current environment, organizations are increasingly looking towards digital solutions to engage their customers and remain competitive. They’re discovering that their customers’ needs can be best met through differentiated, digital experiences delivered by cloud-native applications.

When building a new application, one of the most important decisions to make is where to store the application data. We see tremendous interest in Azure Database for PostgreSQL when it comes to storing relational data in the cloud for mission-critical applications. Here’s why:

Why Azure Database for PostgreSQL? 100 percent open source. Azure Database for PostgreSQL is built on community edition Postgres, with open extension support so you can leverage valuable PostgreSQL features, including JSONB, geospatial support, and rich indexing. Our Postgres team at Microsoft is committed to nurturing a culture of contributing to and collaborating with the Postgres community, and we’re excited to welcome Postgres committers to the team. These committers review submitted code for Postgres, “commit” it into the source code repository, and work with other contributors to test, refine, and eventually incorporate it into the next Postgres build. In future blogs, they’ll share what they’re working on when it comes to new versions of Postgres and updates

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05

Aug

New Azure SQL Learning Tools help reduce the global technology skills gap

Microsoft’s learning solutions pave the way toward data-centric jobs of the future

“It’s been forecasted 800 million people need to learn new skills for their jobs by 2030. In this time of change, people are hungry to learn, gain new skills, and grow their economic opportunity.”—Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft

Across Microsoft, we are helping a new generation of technology workers develop the right level of skills. Recently, Microsoft announced the availability of new virtual learning programs. These programs, focused on technical topics, are already helping people enhance their digital expertise and, for some, are providing a foundation for success in a new career path.

Building upon this goal, we’re excited to announce the Azure Data team’s latest additions to these educational programs.

Our all-new content will help beginners being introduced to Azure as well as SQL experts learn how to understand the benefits of Azure SQL. Since SQL Server and Azure SQL share the same engine, these new set of tools builds upon familiar content. This means SQL Server professionals can become Azure SQL professionals with just a little bit of help, such as:

Microsoft Learn learning path: This six-course Azure SQL fundamentals learning path provides a built-in lab environment

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28

Jul

Three reasons to migrate your ASP.NET apps and SQL Server data to Azure

The way we work and live has changed. Over the last several months, enterprises have had to shift their strategy from “physical first” to digital first and accelerate their digital transformation to enable remote productivity, reduce costs, or rapidly address new opportunities. In a digital first world, websites and web applications play a significant role in how customers interact with a business. To make a great first impression, companies are modernizing their web applications and data to the cloud for optimal performance, and saving money along the way.

Nearly a third1 of the world’s public websites are built on ASP.NET, and for good reasons; it’s fast, scalable, and secure. What if you could combine those benefits with the operational and financial benefits of the cloud? Microsoft Azure offers the only end-to-end application hosting platform to build and manage .NET applications, enabling significant cost savings, operational efficiencies, and business agility.

Here are three ways you’ll benefit from migrating your ASP.NET apps and SQL Server data to Azure.

Optimize costs with fully managed services that do more for you

Operating your .NET applications on a fully managed platform allows your teams to focus on what matters most by offloading apps, infrastructure, and

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28

Jul

Eight ways to optimize costs on Azure SQL
Eight ways to optimize costs on Azure SQL

Across the globe, businesses are emerging into a new normal, eager to restart or rebuild, but still operating in uncertain times. Optimizing costs and redirecting the spend to where it matters most is as important as ever, and many companies see the cloud as a way to control costs, build resilience, and accelerate time to market.

Customers choose Azure for a variety of reasons, but one of the main reasons is to lower their costs. What more could you do if you could save up to 80 percent or more on your database costs? We introduced the Azure SQL family of database services to help businesses cost-effectively adapt and scale to rapidly changing conditions. Here are the top eight ways you can optimize your data spend, with savings available wherever you are in your digital transformation journey.

1. Maintain business continuity in the cloud with free SQL Server licenses

Use your active Software Assurance benefit to get a free license for every SQL Server in your datacenter for a secondary passive replica you can use for disaster recovery to an Azure Virtual Machine.

2. Shift capex to opex with SQL Server on Azure Virtual Machines

Migrating your data to virtual

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11

May

Office Licensing Service and Azure Cosmos DB part 2: Improved performance and availability

This post is part 2 of a two-part series about how organizations use Azure Cosmos DB to meet real world needs, and the difference it’s making to them. In part 1, we explored the challenges that led the Microsoft Office Licensing Service team to move from Azure Table storage to Azure Cosmos DB, and how it migrated its production workload to the new service. In part 2, we examine the outcomes resulting from the team’s efforts.

Strong benefits with minimal effort

The Microsoft Office Licensing Service (OLS) team’s migration from Azure Table storage to Azure Cosmos DB was simple and straightforward, enabling the team to meet all its needs with minimal effort.

An easy migration

In moving to Azure Cosmos DB, thanks to its Table API, the OLS team was able to reuse most of its data access code, and the migration engine they wrote to avoid any downtime was fast and easy to build.

Danny Cheng, a software engineer at Microsoft, who leads the OLS development team explains:

“The migration engine was the only real ‘new code’ we had to write. And the code samples for all three parts are publicly available, so it’s not like we had to

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11

May

Office Licensing Service and Azure Cosmos DB part 1: Migrating the production workload

This post is part 1 of a two-part series about how organizations use Azure Cosmos DB to meet real world needs, and the difference it’s making to them. In part 1, we explore the challenges that led the Microsoft Office Licensing Service team to move from Azure Table storage to Azure Cosmos DB, and how it migrated its production workload to the new service. In part 2, we examine the outcomes resulting from the team’s efforts.

The challenge: Limited throughput and other capabilities

At Microsoft, the Office Licensing Service (OLS) supports activation of the Microsoft Office client on millions of devices around the world—including Windows, Mac, tablets, and mobile. It stores information such as machine ID, product ID, activation count, expiration date, and more. OLS is accessed by the Office client more than more than 240 million times per day by users around the world, with the first call coming from the client upon license activation and then every 2-3 days thereafter as the client checks to make sure the license is still valid.

Until recently, OLS relied on Azure Table storage for its backend data store, which contained about 5 TB of data spread across 18 tables—with separate tables

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06

May

Minecraft Earth and Azure Cosmos DB part 1: Extending Minecraft into our real world

This post is part 1 of a two-part series about how organizations use Azure Cosmos DB to meet real world needs and the difference it’s making to them. In part 1, we explore the challenges that led service developers for Minecraft Earth to choose Azure Cosmos DB and how they’re using it to capture almost every action taken by every player around the globe—with ultra-low latency. In part 2, we examine the solution’s workload and how Minecraft Earth service developers have benefited from building it on Azure Cosmos DB.

Extending the world of Minecraft into our real world

You’ve probably heard of the game Minecraft, even if you haven’t played it yourself. It’s the best-selling video game of all time, having sold more than 176 million copies since 2011. Today, Minecraft has more than 112 million monthly players, who can discover and collect raw materials, craft tools, and build structures or earthworks in the game’s immersive, procedurally generated 3D world. Depending on game mode, players can also fight computer-controlled foes and cooperate with—or compete against—other players.

In May 2019, Microsoft announced the upcoming release of Minecraft Earth, which began its worldwide rollout in December 2019. Unlike preceding games in the

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06

May

Minecraft Earth and Azure Cosmos DB part 2: Delivering turnkey geographic distribution

This post is part 2 of a two-part series about out how organizations are using Azure Cosmos DB to meet real world needs and the difference it’s making to them. In part 1, we explored the challenges that led service developers for Minecraft Earth to choose Azure Cosmos DB and how they’re using it to capture almost every action taken by every player around the globe—with ultra-low latency. In part 2 we examine the solution’s workload and how Minecraft Earth service developers have benefited from building it on Azure Cosmos DB.

Geographic distribution and multi-region writes

Minecraft Earth service developers used the turnkey geographic distribution feature in Azure Cosmos DB to achieve three goals: fault tolerance, disaster recovery, and minimal latency—the latter achieved by also using the multi-master capabilities of Azure Cosmos DB to enable multi-region writes. Each supported geography has at least two service instances. For example, in North America, the Minecraft Earth service runs in the West US and East US Azure regions, with other components of Azure used to determine which is closer to the user and route traffic accordingly.

Nathan Sosnovske, a Senior Software Engineer on the Minecraft Earth services development team explains:

“With Azure available

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30

Apr

Azure Cost Management + Billing updates – April 2020

Whether you’re a new student, thriving startup, or the largest enterprise, you have financial constraints and you need to know what you’re spending, where, and how to plan for the future. Nobody wants a surprise when it comes to the bill, and this is where Azure Cost Management + Billing comes in.

We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management + Billing can help you better understand where you’re accruing costs in the cloud, identify and prevent bad spending patterns, and optimize costs to empower you to do more with less. Here are a few of the latest improvements and updates based on your feedback:

Azure Spot Virtual Machines now generally available. Monitoring your reservation and Marketplace purchases with budgets. Automate cost savings with Azure Resource Graph. Azure Cost Management covered by FedRAMP High. Tell us about your reporting goals. New ways to save money with Azure. New videos and learning opportunities. Documentation updates.

Let’s dig into the details.

 

Azure Spot Virtual Machines now generally available

We all want to save money. We often look at our largest workloads for savings opportunities, but make sure you don’t stop there. You may

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