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.
Frictionless database migration with no code changes at an industry leading TCO
Built-in machine learning for peak database performance and durability that optimizes 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. Never worry about SQL Server end of support again because SQL on Azure SQL Database is always supported. 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. Maximize the performance of your application with customized 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 99.99 percent availability. Take advantage of Hyperscale, with support for up to 100TB, 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. Optimize 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 datacenters, 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 optimizing their costs.
Achieve breakthrough performance and savings
Learn how Komatsu Australia reduced costs by 49 percent and increased performance up to 30 percent by migrating their data to SQL Database Managed Instance.
Migrating to Azure unlocks savings and time-to-market gains
Allscripts realized 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 easy
Get instant access by signing up for an Azure account.
Discover how to use SQL Database: exploretutorials, API references, and other documentation.
Deploy SQL Database using quickstart resources made by the Azure community.
Migrate to SQL Database
Get started right away with the Azure Migration Center.
Forrester Consulting Total Economic ImpactTM of Microsoft Azure SQL Database Managed Instance
Learn more about the operational and financial benefits of migrating on-premises SQL Server workloads to Managed Instance in this commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting.
Webinar: How to Achieve up to 212% ROI by Migrating to Azure SQL Database
Learn about the advantages of migrating to SQL Database Managed Instance, and how it can help you achieve up to a 212% return on investment (ROI) over three years, based on the results of an October 2018 commissioned Total Economic Impact™ Forrester Consulting study.
Updates, blogs, and announcements
May 6, 2019
Get high-performance scaling for your Azure database workloads with Hyperscale
April 2, 2019
Self-service exchange and refund for Azure Reservations
July 17, 2018
Intelligent Healthcare with Azure Bring Your Own Key (BYOK) technology
January 18, 2018
December 2017 Leaderboard of Database Systems contributors on MSDN
December 11, 2017
November 2017 Leaderboard of Database Systems contributors on MSDN
November 16, 2017
October 2017 Leaderboard of Database Systems contributors on MSDN
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 a 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, minimizing or eliminating the need to re-design 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 maximize 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 licenses 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 like 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 percent 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 is appropriate for most business workloads, offering a balanced set of compute and storage options where IO latency or failover times are not the priority.
- Hyperscale is optimized for OLTP and high throughput analytics workloads with highly scalable storage and read-scale requirements.
- Business Critical is best for OLTP applications with high transaction rate and lowest latency IO. It offers highest resilience to failures using several, isolated replicas.
Connectivity between your Microsoft Azure SQL Database and the Azure Internet gateway is guaranteed at least 99.99 percent 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.