Category Archives : Storage, Backup & Recovery

02

Aug

Managed Disks migration now available in the Azure Portal

We are excited to announce the capability of converting VMs with unmanaged Disks to Managed Disks in the Azure Portal! Now you can migrate to Managed Disks in single click without requiring PowerShell or CLI scripts.

Our customers love the benefits of using Managed Disks. Many customers have already adopted Managed Disks since we launched it. If you have not started using Managed Disks, here’s a quick recap of all the capabilities to motivate you to use Managed Disks.

Scale your application without worrying about storage account limits. Achieve high-availability across your compute and storage resources with aligned fault domains. Create VM Scale Sets with up to 1,000 instances. Integrate disks, snapshots, images as first-class resources into your architecture. Secure your disks, snapshots, and images through Azure Role Based Access Control (RBAC)

To read more about the benefits of Managed Disks, see Azure Managed Disks Overview.

Migrating to Managed Disks in Azure Portal

Migrating in the Azure Portal is a pretty simple experience. Let’s walk through this process.

If you are using a VM with unmanaged disks, you will see an info banner on the VM overview blade.

Once you click on the banner, it will launch the migration

24

Jul

Build richer applications with the new asynchronous Azure Storage SDK for Java

Cloud scale applications typically require high concurrency to achieve desired performance when accessing remote data. The new Storage Java SDK simplifies building such applications by offering asynchronous operations, eliminating the need to create and manage a large thread-pool. This new SDK uses the RxJava reactive programming model for asynchronous operations, also relying on Netty HTTP client for REST requests. Get started with the Azure Storage SDK for Java now.

Azure Storage SDK v10 for Java adopts the next-generation Storage SDK design providing thread-safe types that were introduced earlier with the Storage Go SDK release. This new SDK is built to effectively move data without any buffering on the client, and provides interfaces close to the ones in the Storage REST APIs. Some of the improvements in the new SDK are:

Asynchronous programming model with RxJava Low-level APIs consistent with Storage REST APIs New high-level APIs built for convenience Thread-safe interfaces Consistent versioning across all Storage SDKs Asynchronous programming model with RxJava

Now that the Storage SDK supports RxJava it is easier to build event driven applications. This is because it allows you to compose sequences together with the observer pattern. The following sample, that uploads a directory of xml files

23

Jul

Accelerated and Flexible Restore Points with SQL Data Warehouse

We are thrilled to announce that SQL Data Warehouse (SQL DW) has released accelerated and flexible restore points for fast data recovery. SQL DW is a fully managed and secure analytics platform for the enterprise, optimized for running complex queries fast across petabytes of data.

The ability to quickly restore a data warehouse offers customers data protection from accidental corruption, deletion, and disaster recovery. We have seen scenarios where compliance requirements and having multiple test and development environments of a data warehouse enforce stricter capabilities in this area as well. To continue delivering first-class data protection and recovery, we have released the following critical improvements which are seamlessly integrated within the Azure Portal.

Finer granularity for cross region and server restores

You can now restore across regions and servers using any restore point instead of selecting geo redundant backups which are taken every 24 hours. Cross region and server restore is supported for both user-defined or automatic restore points enabling finer granularity for additional data protection. With more restore points available, you can be assured that your data warehouse will be logically consistent when restoring across regions.

Fast restore with Enhanced Restore Points

You can now restore your

23

Jul

Accelerated and Flexible Restore Points with SQL Data Warehouse

We are thrilled to announce that SQL Data Warehouse (SQL DW) has released accelerated and flexible restore points for fast data recovery. SQL DW is a fully managed and secure analytics platform for the enterprise, optimized for running complex queries fast across petabytes of data.

The ability to quickly restore a data warehouse offers customers data protection from accidental corruption, deletion, and disaster recovery. We have seen scenarios where compliance requirements and having multiple test and development environments of a data warehouse enforce stricter capabilities in this area as well. To continue delivering first-class data protection and recovery, we have released the following critical improvements which are seamlessly integrated within the Azure Portal.

Finer granularity for cross region and server restores

You can now restore across regions and servers using any restore point instead of selecting geo redundant backups which are taken every 24 hours. Cross region and server restore is supported for both user-defined or automatic restore points enabling finer granularity for additional data protection. With more restore points available, you can be assured that your data warehouse will be logically consistent when restoring across regions.

Fast restore with Enhanced Restore Points

You can now restore your

19

Jul

Score one for the IT Pro: Azure File Sync is now generally available!

Azure File Sync replicates files from your on-premises Windows Server to an Azure file share. With Azure File Sync, you don’t have to choose between the benefits of cloud and the benefits of your on-premises file server – you can have both! Azure File Sync enables you to centralize your file services in Azure while maintaining local access to your data.

Visit our planning guide to learn more about Azure File Sync.

We created Microsoft Azure Files with the goal of making it easy for you to reap the benefits of cloud storage. We know from decades of experience building Windows file server that file shares are useful for more than just application development; file shares are used for everything under the sun. With Azure Files, we are focused on building general purpose file shares that can replace all the file servers and NAS devices your organization has, and today, we are happy to share an important milestone on that journey: the general availability of Azure File Sync! 
 
Azure File Sync grew out of our conversations with thousands of customers about the challenge of balancing the need for local and fast access to their frequently accessed data with the maintenance

02

Jul

Azure Backup hosts Ask Me Anything session

The Azure Backup team will host a special Ask Me Anything session on Twitter, Tuesday, June 26, 2018 from 7:30 AM to 11:30 AM PST. You can tweet to @AzureBackup or @AzureSupport with #AzureBackupAMA

What’s an AMA session?

We’ll have folks from across the Azure Backup Engineering team available to answer any questions you have. You can ask us anything about our products, services or even our team!

Why are you doing an AMA?

We like reaching out and learning from our customers and the community. We had great conversations in the past when we did an AMA in 2016 and 2015. We want to know how you use Azure and Azure Backup and how your experience has been. Your questions provide insights into how we can make the service better.

How do I ask questions on Twitter?

You can ask us your questions by putting “#AzureBackupAMA” in your tweet. Your question can span multiple tweets by replying to first tweet you post with this hashtag.  You can also directly message @AzureBackup or @AzureSupport if you want to keep your questions private. You can start posting your questions one day before the scheduled time of AMA but we will start

28

Jun

Static website hosting for Azure Storage now in public preview

Today we are excited to announce the public preview of static website hosting for Azure Storage! The feature set is available in all public cloud regions with support in government and sovereign clouds coming soon.

This set of new storage capabilities enables a cost-effective and scalable solution for hosting integrated modern web applications on Azure. On a static website, webpages contain static content and JavaScript or other client-side code. By contrast, dynamic websites depend on server-side code, and can be hosted using Azure Web Apps. As deployments shift toward elastic, cost-effective models, the ability to deliver web content without the need for server management is critical. The introduction of static website hosting in Azure Storage makes this possible, enabling rich backend capabilities with serverless architectures leveraging Azure Functions and other Paas Services.

How it works

When you enable static websites on your storage account, a new web service endpoint is created of the form

<account-name>.<zone-name>.web.core.windows.net.

The web service endpoint always allows anonymous read access, returns formatted HTML pages in response to service errors, and allows only object read operations. The web service endpoint returns the index document in the requested directory for both the root and all subdirectories. When the

28

Jun

A closer look at Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2

On June 27th, 2018 we announced the preview of Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 the only data lake designed specifically for enterprises to run large scale analytics workloads in the cloud. Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 takes core capabilities from Azure Data Lake Storage Gen1 such as a Hadoop compatible file system, Azure Active Directory and POSIX based ACLs and integrates them into Azure Blob Storage. This combination enables best in class analytics performance along with Blob Storage’s tiering and data lifecycle management capabilities and the fundamental availability, security and durability capabilities of Azure Storage.

In this blog post, we are going to drill into why Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 is unique. Taking a closer look at the innovative Hadoop file system implementation, Azure Blob Storage integration and a quick review of why Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 enables the lowest total cost of ownership in the cloud.

High-Fidelity server side Hadoop file system with hierarchical namespace

The simplest way to enable Hadoop applications to work with cloud storage is to build a Hadoop File System driver which runs client-side within the Hadoop applications as illustrated in diagram 1. This driver emulates a file system, converting Hadoop file system

28

Jun

A closer look at Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2

On June 27, 2018 we announced the preview of Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 the only data lake designed specifically for enterprises to run large scale analytics workloads in the cloud. Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 takes core capabilities from Azure Data Lake Storage Gen1 such as a Hadoop compatible file system, Azure Active Directory and POSIX based ACLs and integrates them into Azure Blob Storage. This combination enables best in class analytics performance along with Blob Storage’s tiering and data lifecycle management capabilities and the fundamental availability, security and durability capabilities of Azure Storage.

In this blog post, we are going to drill into why Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 is unique. Taking a closer look at the innovative Hadoop file system implementation, Azure Blob Storage integration and a quick review of why Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2 enables the lowest total cost of ownership in the cloud.

High-Fidelity server side Hadoop file system with hierarchical namespace

The simplest way to enable Hadoop applications to work with cloud storage is to build a Hadoop File System driver which runs client-side within the Hadoop applications as illustrated in diagram 1. This driver emulates a file system, converting Hadoop file system

20

Jun

Disaster Recovery solution for Azure IaaS applications

On June 4th 2018, Corey Sanders announced the general availability of Disaster Recovery (DR) for Azure Virtual Machines (VMs) using Azure Site Recovery (ASR) in his blog post about why you should bet on Azure for your infrastructure needs today and in the future. Azure is the first public cloud to offer native Disaster Recovery solution for applications running on IaaS. With this offering, you can make your applications resilient to even region level failures by replicating VMs into another region. Along with Availability Sets and Availability Zones, Azure Site Recovery completes the resiliency continuum for applications running on Azure Virtual Machines.

Key benefits No infrastructure required: You do not need any additional software infrastructure (VMs or appliances) in your Azure subscription to enable this functionality. You avoid all the complexity and cost associated with deploying, monitoring, patching and maintaining any DR infrastructure.

“By using ‘Azure to Azure DR’, Microsoft’s Universal Store Team (UST), who develops and operates Microsoft’s core commerce Store and systems, was able to use its previously DR validated platform on-premises to perform the equivalent on Azure. Without ASR, the Universal Store team would have spent substantial resources deploying a new instance of the legacy