What’s new with Azure this week? Here are five updates, including Azure SQL Hyperscale auto-failover groups, Azure Policy support for Azure Site Recovery, additional IP addresses have been added for endpoint monitoring in Azure Traffic Manager, Azure Cognitive Services’ new Semantic Search features, and some useful Azure IoT Central updates. Let’s dig in!
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1. Auto-failover groups for Azure SQL Hyperscale now in preview
The Hyperscale service tier in Azure SQL is not only a cool name, but it’s also the top tier for Azure SQL when it comes to rapid scale out and scale up, support for huge databases up to 100TB in size, nearly instantaneous backups, and very fast restores. It’s like the supercar of the database world. A supercar the size of a bus?
Anyway, this week, auto-failover groups for Hyperscale were released in preview. Some of the benefits you get with auto-failover groups are
- Simplified management of a group of geo-replicated databases including ability to failover the entire group of databases.
- Ability for applications to maintain the same read/write and read-only endpoints after failover.
- Recovery during loss of an entire region through geo-failover which can be initiated manually or through an automatic failover policy.
- Readable online secondaries that can be used for read-only workloads by connecting with read-only listener endpoints which remain unchanged during geo-failovers.
Pretty neat! You can read more about it here.
2. Azure Policy support for Azure Site Recovery is GA
Policy support for Azure Site Recovery is now generally available. Once you have a Disaster Recovery policy created for a given subscription or resource group, all new VMs that are added to that subscription or resource groups will have Azure Site Recovery enabled automatically.
This can be handy to comply with company policy, but don’t forget that you pay for each of those ASRs being enabled. Could get pricy.
Read more here.
3. Azure Traffic Manager: Additional IP addresses for endpoint monitoring service
If you’ve ever used Traffic Manager, you might know that it has an endpoint monitoring service that evaluates the endpoints that traffic is directed to. This is to ensure that traffic isn’t directed to a broken endpoint, keeping your application healthy.
To make sure the capacity of the probes follows the growth of Traffic Manager, Azure will be increasing the number of probes deployed within Traffic Manager’s endpoint monitoring service over the next few years. You will need to monitor the list of IP addresses for the probes to make sure you allow them to work with your Traffic Manager.
4. Public preview: Semantic Search update
Semantic search is now in public preview, which means you can enable it with a flick of a switch in the Azure Portal.
What is semantic search? It is a new feature of Azure Cognitive Services, which can understand user intent and rank the most relevant search results based on the context.
Have a play with it today here. Just don’t search for llama rainbows again. You know what happened last time . . .
5. Azure IoT Central updates
Finally, there are a bunch of little updates to Azure IoT Central:
- The limit of devices that can be shown on a single tile on and Azure IoT Central Dashboard from 10 to 100.
- You can now duplicate IoT dashboards to increase the number of dashboards dramatically…I guess.
- And, you can now send device telemetry in different shapes and transform the telemetry into structured data at Azure IoT Central ingress.
If you do IoT central things, you now have a few more updates to play with. Check it out here.
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