Azure SQL Database
Managed, intelligent SQL in the cloud
The best destination for fully managed SQL in the cloud
Azure SQL Database is the intelligent, scalable, cloud database service that provides the broadest SQL Server engine compatibility and up to a 212% return on investment. Migrate existing apps or build new apps on Azure – the best cloud destination for your mission-critical SQL Server workloads.
Azure SQL Database is now Azure Arc-enabled. You can run this service on premises on infrastructure of your choice with cloud benefits such as automation, no end of support, unified management and a cloud billing model.
Frictionless database migration with no code changes at an industry-leading TCO
Built-in machine learning for peak database performance and durability that optimises performance and security for you
Unmatched scale and high availability for compute and storage without sacrificing performance
Advanced data security including data discovery and classification, vulnerability assessment and advanced threat detection all in a single pane of glass
Accelerate your on-premises SQL Server migrations without changing the application code with Managed Instance. Always have the latest SQL Server capabilities in the cloud with an evergreen SQL database that requires no patching or upgrading from you. Use the Azure Hybrid Benefit for industry-leading TCO.Read the Azure Database Migration Guide
Built-in machine learning
Get peak database performance and durability with safe, reliable and proven AI technology. Maximise the performance of your application with customised auto-tuning recommendations. Use Intelligent Insights to monitor and detect disruptive events that can cause poor performance.Learn more about machine learning-based monitoring and tuning
Unmatched scale and high availability
Scale your application on demand with up to 99.995 per cent availability. Take advantage of Hyperscale, with support for up to 100 TB, and restore massive databases in just minutes. Scale compute and storage resources independently for maximum flexibility and lower your costs with discounted readable replicas. Built-in high availability in Azure SQL Database guarantees that the database will never be the single point of failure in your software architecture. Optimise price performance for databases with intermittent and unpredictable usage patterns with the serverless compute tier.
Advanced data security
- Protect your databases from malicious acts with fine-grained access controls, Always Encrypted technology and advanced threat-protection capabilities.
- Discover, track and remediate potential vulnerabilities from a single screen.
- Azure SQL Database meets the most stringent compliance standards with built-in auditing and information-protection technology.
- Get continuous protection with deeper insights from Azure Security Center.
- Multi-layered security provided by Microsoft across physical data centres, infrastructure and operations.
Pricing for the intelligent, relational cloud database service
Azure SQL Database is a fully managed relational database with built-in intelligence supporting self-driving features such as performance tuning and threat alerts. Explore all SQL Database pricing options and find the performance that fits your workload.Visit the SQL DB pricing page
Trusted by companies of all sizes
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.
Achieve breakthrough performance and savings
Learn how Komatsu Australia reduced costs by 49 per cent and increased performance up to 30 per cent by migrating their data to SQL Database Managed Instance.
Migrating to Azure unlocks savings and time-to-market gains
Allscripts realised dramatic time-to-market gains and savings by migrating their applications to SQL Database Managed Instance and Azure infrastructure as a service (IaaS) offerings.
Migrate large workloads without extensive downtime or code changes
Learn how KMD, part of NEC corporation, migrated an 8-terabyte production database to Azure SQL Database Managed Instance, quickly and without service interruption.
Improve productivity with smarter services
Find out how enterprise software developer ABB uses Azure platform as a service (PaaS) offerings, including Azure SQL Database, to drive product development using a microservices-based architecture.
Predicting weather with cloud-based machine learning
AccuWeather uses machine learning to provide minute-by-minute updates to help defend people and businesses against the weather.
Everything you need to get started easily
Documentation, training and migration resources
Migrate to SQL Database
Get started straight away with the Azure Migration Center.
How to lower costs, raise productivity in the cloud
Discover the benefits of migrating to managed instance in this commissioned Total Economic Impact™ study conducted by Forrester Consulting.
Making PCI compliance easier with Azure SQL Database
This white paper provides guidance on how to achieve and maintain compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard with Azure SQL Database.
Azure SQL Database for gaming industry workloads
Read the white paper detailing the technical aspects of why Azure SQL Database is the best place to run online games.
Updates, blogs and announcements
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
17 May, 2019
Optimize price-performance with compute auto-scaling in Azure SQL Database serverless
6 May, 2019
Get high-performance scaling for your Azure database workloads with Hyperscale
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
- As part of a Managed Instance, which is a collection of databases that contains system and user databases and shares a set of resources
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. Azure’s intelligent engine recommends a pool for databases when a usage pattern warrants it. For details, see Elastic pool guidance.
SQL Database Managed Instance is an expansion of the existing SQL Database resource types, combining the best of SQL Server with all the benefits of a fully managed (platform as a service) PaaS, minimising or eliminating the need to redesign the application. SQL Database Managed Instance uniquely offers instance-level compatibility for SQL Server features such as SQL Agent, Service Broker, Linked Server and cross-database queries, enabling new migration scenarios where application changes are significantly reduced or eliminated.
Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server helps you maximise the value from your current licensing investments and accelerate their 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 Software Assurance to pay a reduced rate (“base rate”) on SQL Database. Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server is available at public preview of the vCore-based purchasing model for SQL Database single databases and elastic pools. You may apply this benefit even if the SKU is already active, but please note that the base rate is applied from the time you select it in the Azure portal. No credit will be issued retroactively.
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 security and business continuity. For example, 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 between Azure SQL Database vs SQL Server.
This new purchasing model is an addition to the existing DTU-based model. The vCore-based model is designed to give you flexibility, control, transparency and a straightforward way to translate on-premises workload requirements to the cloud. It also allows you to scale your compute and storage resources based on your workload needs. Single database and elastic pool options using the vCore model are also eligible for up to 55 per cent savings with Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server. See the vCore-based purchasing model for more information.
The vCore-based service tiers are primarily differentiated by availability, storage type and IOPS.
- General Purpose offers a budget-oriented balanced set of compute and storage options for where IO performance or failover time is not the priority.
- Hyperscale is appropriate for most business workloads, optimised for 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% 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.