21st January 2019
Microsoft Azure has Data Centres all over the world, each group of Data Centres in a specific location is referred to as a Region. When resources or services are provisioned in Azure you must specify which Region (Data Centre(s)) you want to provision the services in.
When selecting a region, consideration should be given to the following factors:
Storage accounts are required in Azure for the persistence of any data by the Azure Platform. When deploying Virtual Machines, the storage accounts are used to store the virtual hard disk files used by the Virtual Machines.
Storage Accounts include one or more of the following sub-services:
|Blob (Block Blob)||Blob storage is used for storing unstructured data files such as Documents, Photos, Videos, Audio, Backups and Logs.|
|File (File Share)||File storage allows the creation of SMB file shares which can be mounted and used by both on-premises and cloud resources simultaneously (subject to supporting the SMB 3.0 protocol).|
|Disk (Paged Blob)||Disk/Paged Blobs are optimised for IaaS virtual hard disks and support random read/write operations.|
|Table||Table storage is Microsoft’s semi-structured NoSQL Key/Attribute data store.|
|Queue||Queue storage provides reliable message storage which can be utilised by both on-premise and cloud services for integration purposes.|
It’s possible to create several types of Storage accounts, however, each type has limitations regarding which services are available within the account:
|Storage Account Type||Blob||File (File Share)||Disk (Paged Blob)||Table||Queue|
Redundancy is built-in to all storage accounts; however, it is possible to customise the level of redundancy depending on your requirements and budget (more resilience comes at an increased cost):
Choosing the right storage and region will impact cost and functionality. We believe you should always use the right one for the right job. For example, you wouldn’t opt to pay for RA-GRS over GRS unless you want to read the copy in the second location. And you might choose critical backups for GRS, but it may be cost effective to do daily’s to LRS, and weekly to GRS.
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*specification accuracies based on time of print (31 Dec 2018)
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