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Azure SQL Database zone redundancy for all!

Wayne Hoggett
Wayne Hoggett

What’s been happening in Azure news this week? We take a look at redundancy for Azure SQL Database and DevOps improvements for Azure Static Web Apps. We also check out the latest changes and enhancements to the Azure Monitor Agent.

DevOps, Monitoring and Redundancy – three of my favorite topics! Let’s dive in.

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Zone redundancy for Azure SQL Database general purpose tier

Microsoft recently announced that you can now configure your Azure SQL Databases in the general purpose service tier for zone redundancy.

This was previously reserved only for the higher-cost business and critical tiers.

Zone redundancy protects your databases against a wider range of Azure failures, including datacenter outages, and as a result bumps the SLA provided by Microsoft to 99.995%. And as you’re using zones in the same region, you still get a recovery point objective (or RPO) of zero. This means no data loss in the event of a zone failure. Always handy. 

You can also flick the switch over to zone redundant on existing databases using either the Portal, ARM templates PowerShell or the Azure CLI.

It’s worth noting this service will cost a bit more, and is only currently generally available in select regions, with additional regions available in preview. 

Stable URLs for preview environments in Azure Static Web Apps

Azure Static Web Apps is one of my favorite up-and-coming Azure services.

I say up-and-coming because it’s still a baby in the Azure world, being only a year since general availability. It allows you to easily deploy globally redundant web front ends, and can also be easily integrated into Azure Functions.

But what’s really great about Azure Static Web Apps is their integration with modern DevOps tools, like GitHub and Azure DevOps, to continuously deploy your changes.

Previously, whenever you created a pull request against your production branch, Azure Static Web apps would generate a preview URL so you could take a look at the changes before merging the pull request.

With Stable URLs, you can now have a permanent preview for different branches of your website. Say you have a long-running development branch that’s used for continuous integration, you can now have a URL permanently set up for that branch.


Azure Monitor Agent updates

Azure Monitor Agent is the new agent you can deploy to your Azure Virtual Machines, Scale Sets, and Azure Arc-enabled servers to send log and metric data to your Log Analytics Workspace.

Previously, this collection was all done using a handful of different agents, including the Log Analytics Agent. The Log Analytics Agent now has a retirement date of August 2024. This means that Microsoft is busily adding all of the Log Analytics Agent features into Azure Monitor Agent.

The latest of these features to enter public preview is support for custom text-based logs and Windows-based IIS Logs.

This is in addition to the recently added support for Windows 10 and Windows 11 clients.

What I love about the Azure Monitor Agent is its support for Data Collection Rules that allow you to granularly configure which logs and metrics are collected. You can even hand off this responsibility to the workloads teams to decentralize your monitoring configuration efforts.

So take a look at the Azure Monitor Agent, run it alongside the Log Analytics Agent, and see if it supports your requirements. Oh, and make sure you move across before the Log Analytics Agent is retired!

Keep up with all things Azure

Well that’s all for this week! Want to keep up with all things cloud? Follow ACG on Twitter and Facebook. You can also subscribe to A Cloud Guru on YouTube for weekly Azure updates, and join the conversation on Discord.

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