Azure SQL Database
Build apps that scale with the pace of your business with managed and intelligent SQL in the cloud
Build your next app on fully managed Azure SQL Database
Part of the Azure SQL family, Azure SQL Database is the intelligent, scalable, relational database service built for the cloud. It’s evergreen and always up to date, with AI-powered and automated features that optimise performance and durability for you. Serverless compute and Hyperscale storage options automatically scale resources on demand, so you can focus on building new applications without worrying about storage size or resource management.
The fully managed database automates updates, provisioning and backups so you can focus on application development
Fully managed and always on the latest version of SQL
Eliminate the complexity of configuring and managing high availability, tuning, backups and other database tasks with a fully managed SQL database.
Accelerate your application development on the only cloud with evergreen SQL using the latest SQL Server capabilities, and never worry about updates, upgrades or end of support again.
Hyperscale your most demanding workloads
Break through the resource limitations that can affect your application’s performance. Azure SQL Database Hyperscale adapts to changing requirements by rapidly scaling storage up to 100 TB. Flexible, cloud native architecture allows storage to grow as needed and enables nearly instantaneous backups and fast database restores in minutes – regardless of the size of the data operation.
Optimise costs with compute that automatically scales
Build modern apps your way with provisioned and serverless compute options. Azure SQL Database serverless simplifies performance management and helps developers focus on building apps faster and more efficiently with compute resources that automatically scale based on workload demand.
SQL Database serverless is best for scenarios where usage is intermittent and unpredictable and you only pay for compute resources you use on a per-second basis, optimising overall price performance.
Save with the best total cost of ownership
Switch to Azure SQL Database and get better price performance than other cloud service providers. Azure SQL Database meets your mission-critical requirements while costing up to 86 per cent less than the competition.1
Use Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server to maximise the value from your current licensing investments. Use your SQL Server licences with Software Assurance and save up to 55 per cent over pay-as-you-go pricing on SQL Database.2
Build and deliver modern, intelligent apps faster
- Develop on popular platforms including Windows, Linux and Mac with familiar tools such as Visual Studio and Azure Data Studio.
- Build intelligent applications faster using popular languages such as .NET, Java, Node.js, Ruby, PHP and Python.
- Implement CI/CD pipelines with Azure DevOps or GitHub.
- Combine with Azure App Service to manage and scale your entire application and data stack.
- Simplify .NET app integration with native support in SQL Database and App Service.
Advanced data security
- Remediate potential threats in real time with intelligent threat protection and proactive vulnerability assessment alerts.
- Get industry-leading, multi-layered protection with built-in security controls including network security, encryption, and access and key management.
- Take advantage of the most comprehensive compliance coverage of any cloud database service.
- Protect your data with Always Encrypted technology, where encryption keys are never revealed to the database engine.
- Download security infographic
Pricing for the intelligent, relational cloud database service
Explore all SQL Database pricing options and find the performance that fits your workload.
Trusted by companies of all sizes
Reducing costs and delivering the right level of performance for customers
Scaling quickly to meet demand spikes from its large volume of users presented a challenge. Learn how Icertis reduced their costs and helped their customers get the right level of performance when they needed it with Azure SQL Database serverless.
Removing the bottlenecks to business growth
Learn how Paychex migrated to Azure SQL Database to handle their explosive growth. Using elastic pools, Paychex can deliver the app at scale with high performance and availability, while optimising their costs.
Accelerating performance at lower cost with serverless
Learn why CampBrain expects to reduce their overall compute costs by up to 60 per cent.
Promoting growth and innovation with Hyperscale
ClearSale outgrew its on-premises platform and migrated to SQL Database Hyperscale. Learn how they can now process a virtually infinite number of transactions per minute and automatically scale to accommodate their growth.
Cloud migration reduced costs by 70 per cent
Benesse wanted to break free from recurring Oracle server replacement expenses and saw Azure as the cost-effective alternative. Learn how they migrated with zero user impact and reduced operational expenses by 70 per cent.
Improve productivity and reduce operating costs
Find out how Thomson Reuters Elite significantly accelerated their go-to-market and reduced costs over on-premises implementation with Azure SQL Database.
Documentation, training and migration resources
Migrate to SQL Database
Get started straight away with the Azure Migration Center.
Explore tutorials, samples and other documentation to learn how to use SQL Database.
Expand your knowledge and earn certifications with hands-on online courses.
How to reduce costs and raise productivity in the cloud
Discover the benefits of migrating to Azure SQL managed databases in this commissioned Total Economic ImpactTM study conducted by Forrester Consulting.
Download the study
Webinar: Optimise price performance and simplify performance management with serverless
This webinar shows you how to onboard a serverless SQL database and optimise price performance.
View the on-demand webinar
The Essential Guide to Data in the Cloud: A Handbook for DBAs
This e-book shows you how to take your existing DBA skillset and make the transition to becoming a cloud DBA.
Download the e-book
Azure SQL Database updates, blogs and announcements
12 January, 2021
Azure SQL Database named among the top 3 databases of 2020
27 May, 2020
The Azure SQL family: Innovation and value in the cloud
14 October, 2019
Azure SQL Database: Continuous innovation and limitless scale at an unbeatable price
12 August, 2019
Six ways we’re making Azure reservations even more powerful
31 July, 2019
Understanding and leveraging Azure SQL Database’s SLA
8 July, 2019
Thanks for 10 years and welcome to a new chapter in SQL innovation
Frequently asked questions about Azure SQL Database
Azure SQL Database provides the following deployment options for an Azure SQL database:
- As a single database with its own set of resources managed via a logical server.
- As a pooled database in an elastic pool with a shared set of resources managed through a logical server
In general, elastic pools are designed for a typical software-as-a-service (SaaS) application pattern, where there is one database per customer or tenant. Purchasing individual databases and over-provisioning to meet the variable and peak demand for each database is often not cost-efficient, but with pools, you manage the collective performance and the databases scale up and down automatically. Our intelligent engine recommends a pool for databases when a usage pattern warrants it. For details, see elastic pool guidance.
The Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server helps you to maximise the value from your current licensing investments and accelerate your migration to the cloud. Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server is an Azure-based benefit that enables you to use your SQL Server licences with active Software Assurance to pay a reduced rate (“base rate”) on vCore-based Azure SQL Database and Azure SQL Managed Instance. You can apply this benefit even if the SKU is active but note that the base rate will be applied from the time you select it in the portal. No credit will be issued retroactively.
You can activate the Azure Hybrid Benefit via the Azure Portal by confirming that you have sufficient active licences with Software Assurance.
The Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server provides:
- The ability to move your licences to a fully managed platform-as-a-service (PaaS) product. Azure is the only cloud that provides this ability. Amazon Web Services Relational Database Service (RDS) is not eligible for bring-your-own-licence (BYOL) and must be offered as “licence-included”.
- Four cores in the cloud for every one core on premises for Enterprise edition customers in the general purpose or Hyperscale service tiers.
- One hundred and eighty days of dual-use rights to apply to current deployment (on premises or on third-party cloud) and in Azure to allow for data migration.
No. Azure SQL Database is a fully managed database service, which means that Microsoft operates SQL Server for you and ensures its availability and performance. SQL Database also includes innovative features to enhance your business continuity, such as built-in high availability. A comprehensive security portfolio allows you to implement intelligent features such as threat detection, so that don’t have to worry about administering or maintaining hundreds or thousands of your SQL Server databases. View the full feature comparison of Azure SQL Database and SQL Server.
The vCore-based service tiers are primarily differentiated by availability, storage type and IOPS:
General Purpose offers a budget-oriented and balanced set of compute and storage options where I/O performance or failover time is not the priority.
Hyperscale is appropriate for most business workloads, optimised for online transaction processing (OLTP) and hybrid transactional analytical workloads (HTAP), with highly scalable storage size, read scale-out and fast database restore capabilities.
Business Critical is best for OLTP applications with high transaction rate and low IO latency. It offers the highest resilience to failures and fast failovers by using multiple synchronously updated replicas.
Connectivity between your Microsoft Azure SQL Database and the Azure Internet gateway is guaranteed at least 99.99 per cent of the time, regardless of your service tier. 0.01 per cent is reserved for patches, upgrades and failovers. For more information, read the SLA. For information about the availability architecture of Azure SQL Database, see high availability and Azure SQL Database.
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1Price-performance claim based on data from a study commissioned by Microsoft and conducted by GigaOm in August 2019. The study compared price performance between a single, 80 vCore, Gen 5 Azure SQL Database on the business critical service tier and the db.r4.16x large offering for Amazon Web Services Relational Database Service (AWS RDS) for SQL Server. Benchmark data is taken from a GigaOm Analytic Field Test derived from a recognised industry standard, TPC Benchmark™ E (TPC-E) and is based on a mixture of read-only and update intensive transactions that simulate activities found in complex OLTP application environments. Price-performance is calculated by GigaOm as the cost of running the cloud platform continuously for three years divided by transactions per second throughput. Prices are based on publicly available US pricing in East US for Azure SQL Database and US East (Ohio) for AWS RDS as of August 2019. Price-performance results are based upon the configurations detailed in the GigaOm Analytic Field Test. Actual results and prices may vary based on configuration and region.
2Savings based on eight vCore Managed Instance Business Critical in East US Region, running for 730 hours per month. Savings are calculated from full price (licence included) against base rate (applying Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server), which excludes Software Assurance cost for SQL Server Enterprise edition, which may vary based on Enterprise Agreement. Actual savings may vary based on region, instance size and performance tier. Prices as of February 2020, subject to change.