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How do you back up your SQL Servers today? You could be using backup software that require you to manage backup servers, agents, and storage, or you could be writing elaborate custom scripts which need you to manage the backups on each server individually. With the modernization of IT infrastructure and the world rapidly moving to the cloud, do you want to continue using the legacy backup methods that are tedious, infrastructure-heavy, and difficult to scale? Azure Backup for SQL Server Virtual Machines (VMs) is the modern way of doing backup in cloud, and we are excited to announce that it is now generally available! It is an enterprise scale, zero-infrastructure solution that eliminates the need to deploy and manage backup infrastructure while providing a simple and consistent experience to centrally manage and monitor the backups on standalone SQL instances and Always On Availability Groups.

Azure Backup for SQL Server running in Azure Virtual Machines


Built into Azure, the solution combines the core cloud promises of simplicity, scalability, security and cost effectiveness with inherent SQL backup capabilities that are leveraged by using native APIs, to yield high fidelity backups and restores. The key value propositions of this solution are:

  1. 15-minute Recovery Point Objective (RPO): Working with uber critical data and have a low RPO? Schedule a log backup to happen every 15 minutes.
  2. One-click, point-in-time restores: Tired of elaborate manual restore procedures? Restore databases to a point in time up to a second in one click, without having to manually apply a chain of logs over differential and full backups.
  3. Long-term retention: Rigorous compliance and audit needs? Retain your backups for years, based on the retention duration, beyond which the recovery points will be pruned automatically by the built-in lifecycle management capability.
  4. Protection for encrypted databases: Concerned about security of your data and backups? Back-up SQL encrypted databases and secure backups with built-in encryption at rest while controlling backup and restore operations with Role-Based Access Control.
  5. Auto-protection: Dealing with a dynamic environment where new databases get added frequently? Auto-protect your server to automatically detect and protect the newly added databases.
  6. Central management and monitoring: Losing too much time managing and monitoring backups for each server in isolation? Scale smartly by creating centrally managed backup policies that can be applied across databases. Monitor jobs and get alerts and emails across servers and even vaults from a single pane of glass.
  7. Cost effective: No infrastructure and no overhead of managing the scale, seems like value for the money already? Enjoy reduced total cost of ownership and flexible pay-as-you-go option.

Get started

Click on the image below to watch the video, “How to back up SQL Server running in Azure VMs with Azure Backup.”

Azure portal with ‘Restore’ blade open inside the vault view that shows the graphical view of continuous log backups.

Customer feedback

We have been in preview for a few months now, and have seen an overwhelming response from our customers:

“Our experience with Azure SQL Server Backup has been fantastic. It’s a solution you can put in place in a couple of minutes and not have to worry about it. To restore DBs, we don’t have to deal with rolling logs and only have to choose a date and time. It gives us great peace of mind to know the data is safely stored in the Recovery Services Vaults with our other protected items.”

– Steven Hayes, Principal Architect, Acuity Brands Lighting, Inc

“We have been using Azure Backup for SQL Server for the past few months and have found it simple to use and easy to set up. The backup and restore operations are performant and reliable as well as easy to monitor. We plan to continue using it in the future.”

– Celica E. Candido, Cloud Operations Analyst, Willis Towers Watson

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