Azure PASS VC Next meeting: Kung Fu Migration to Windows Azure SQL Database

Azure PASS VC’s next meeting:

Kung Fu Migration to Windows Azure SQL Database

Speaker: Scott Klein, Technical Evangelist Microsoft

Summary: As cloud computing becomes more popular and cloud-based solutions the norm rather than the fringe, the need to efficiently migrate your database is crucial. This demo-filled session will discuss the tips and tricks, methods and strategies for migrating your on-premises SQL Server databases to Windows Azure SQL Database, AKA SQL Azure. Focusing primarily on SQL Server Data Tools and the DAC Framework, this session will focus on how these tools can make you a kung-fu migration master.

About Scott: Scott Klein is a Corporate Technical Evangelist for Microsoft focusing on Windows Azure SQL Database (AKA SQL Azure) and related cloud-ready data services. His entire career has been built around SQL Server, working with SQL Server since the 4.2 days. Prior to Microsoft he was a SQL Server MVP for several years, then followed that up by being one of the first 4 SQL Azure MVPs. Scott is the author of over ½ dozen books for both WROX and APress, including Pro SQL Azure. He can be found talking about Windows Azure SQL Database and database scalability and performance at events large and small wherever he can get people to listen, such as SQL Saturday events, local SQL Server user groups, and TechEd.

Details at http://azure.sqlpass.org/

Download the calendar file: http://www.sqlpass.org/iCal.aspx?EventID=245

How to Join Azure PASS VC’s?

If you want to stay updated on meeting announcements, please consider registering on PASS’s website and Joining our VC:

If you do not have a SQLPASS account:

a. Go to http://www.sqlpass.org/RegisterforSQLPASS.aspx

b. Fill up the required information and register

Now, After successful login/registration – Go to http://www.sqlpass.org/MYPASS.aspx

a. switch to MyChapters section

b. Now under virtual chapters, you would see a list of virtual chapters. Join the one’s you are interested in!

my PASS my Chapter Azure VC

I look forward to seeing you at next Azure PASS VC’s meeting!

SQL Azure: Is there a “per transaction” cost for Windows Azue SQL Database?

Question: Is there a “per transaction” cost for Windows Azue SQL Database (SQL Azure)?

Short Answer: No

I recently answered the question on MSDN forum where the question was about Transactions and the associated cost in SQL Azure. As of now, There is no “per transaction” cost associated with SQL Azure. There are two parameters that affect your SQL Azure Bill: 1) Database Size 2) Outbound Data Transfer and an example of an outbound transfer would be data access by an application hosted outside of your Azure DB’s data-center.

If you want to read more about SQL Azure pricing, here’s the official resource:

https://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/pricing/details/#header-4

And here are some of the blog-posts that I’ve written on the same topic:

SQL Azure got a new pricing model!

SQL Azure: Indexes are very helpful but they cost $Money$

Getting started with SQL Azure – Part 3: Provisioning and Billing Model of SQL Azure << Paras Doshi

For my Archives: Few questions answered on Windows Azure & SQL Azure MSDN forums

I normally Blog about the answers that I give out on MSDN forums. The answer on MSDN forum is generally brief and to the point and in the blog post – I expand it to cover related areas. Here are the questions for which I didn’t choose to write a blog. So I am just going to archive them for now:

SQL Azure’s Journey from Inception in Year 2008 to June 2012!

SQL Azure has been evolving at an amazing pace. Here is a list that summarizes the evolution till June 2012:

SQL Azure, June 2012 (During Meet Windows Azure event)

SQL Azure reporting is now generally available and is backed by SLA

SQL Azure now called Windows Azure SQL Database

Run SQL Server on Azure VM role

SQL Azure, May 2012

SQL Azure now available in one more data-center: “East USA”

SQL Azure Data SYNC, April 2012

Data SYNC Service Update notes

SQL Azure, February 2012:

Updated pricing model

SQL Azure Labs, February 2012:

SQL Azure security services

Microsoft Codename “Trust Services”

SQL Azure Labs, January 2012:

Project codenamed “Cloud Numerics”

Project codenamed “SQL Azure Compatibility Assessment”

Service Update 8, December 2011:

Increased Max size of Database [Previous: 50 GB. Now: 150 GB]

SQL Azure Federations

SQL Azure import/export updated

SQL Azure management portal gets a facelift.

Expanded support for user defined collations

And there are no additional cost when you go above 50 GB. [so cost of 50 GB database = cost of 150 GB DB = ~500$ per month]

SQL Azure Labs, November 2011:

Microsoft project codename “Data Transfer”

upcoming SQL Azure Q4 2011 service release announced!

SQL Azure federations

150 GB database

SQL Azure management portal will get a facelift with metro styled UI among other great additions

Read more

SQL Azure LABS, October 2011:

Data Explorer preview

Social Analytics preview

New registrations for SQL Azure ODATA stopped.

News at SQLPASS, October 2011:

SQL Azure reporting services CTP is now open for all!

SQL Azure DATA SYNC CTP is now open for all!

Upcoming: 150 GB database!

Upcoming: SQL Azure Federations

SQL Server Developer Tools, Codename “Juneau” supports SQL Azure

Following updates where not added in July 2011 and where later added in September 2011:

New SQL Azure Management Portal

Foundational updates for scalability and performance

Service Update 7, July 2011:

Creating SQL Azure firewall rules with IP detect

SQL Azure Co-Administrator support

Enhanced spatial data types support

Service Update 6, May 2011:

Support for Multiple servers per subscription

SQL Azure database management REST API

JDBC driver

Support for Upgrading DAC packages

Service Update 5, October 2010:

Support for SQL Azure sync

Support for SQL Azure reporting

SQL Azure Error messages

Support for sp_tableoption system stored procedure

Service Update 4, August 2010:

Update on project Houston, A silverlight based app to manage SQL Azure databases

Support for TSQL command to COPY databases

Books Online: Added How-To topics for SQL Azure

Service Update 3, June 2010:

Support for database sizes up to 50 GB

Support for spatial datatype

Added East Asia and Western Europe datacenter

Service Update 2, April 2010:

Support for renaming databases

DAC (Data Tier Applications) support added

Support for SQL Server management studio (SSMS) and Visual Studio (VS)

Service Update 1, February 2010:

Support for new DMV’s

Support for Alter Database Editions

Support for longer running Queries

Idle session Time outs increased from 5 min to 30 min

SQL Server Data Services / SQL Data Services Got a new Name: SQL Azure, July 2009

SQL Server Data Services was Announced, April 2008

 

we now have 3 (three) options to run SQL server on CLOUD.

Following the announcements at “Meet Windows Azure” event, we now have three options to run SQL Server on CLOUD; They are:

1. SQL Azure which is now called Windows Azure SQL Database

2. SQL Server on Windows Azure VM Roles (Nice addition, in my opinion!)

3. SQL Server on Amazon Web Services RDS

And apart from these options,

if you can fire up a VM on cloud and decide to run SQL Server on it – that’s also SQL Server on CLOUD.

Update 22 June 2012:

Naveen commented about running SQL Server on Amazon EC2.

Quick updates from meet windows azure event for Data Professionals

1. SQL Azure reporting is generally available and backed by SLA

2. You can now run SQL Server on VM roles

3. Azure was rebranded a while back but quick reminder: SQL Azure was renamed to Windows Azure SQL Database and so in the “new” portal – you’ll see “SQL database” instead of SQL Azure.

I’ll blog about these features as and when I get a chance to play with it.

Read all updates here: Now Available: New Services and Enhancements to Windows Azure

And I updated http://parasdoshi.com/whats-new-in-sql-azure/

One more way to run SQL Server on cloud: SQL server on AWS RDS

Up until April 2012, the only way to run SQL server on cloud was “SQL Azure”. But recently AWS announced SQL Server on Cloud. Good news? Probably. it’s always good to have more than one option. So for those who are new to world of AWS, here are few tips before you get hands-on:

1) The way RDS works is that you spin up “db instances”. So here you specify the machine size that would “power” your database. And remember that the type of instance you choose would directly affect your bill.

2) Spend some time understanding the billing structure. Since AWS gives you lot of options – their billing structure is not simple. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that lot of options in AWS is bad. it’s just that the billing is not simple and it’s not one-dimensional (there are various dimensions that shapes your billing structure). And why should you invest time? because in the “pay – as – you – go ” model it would directly affect your Bill.

3) understand costs like: cost to back-up database PLUS data-transfer cost.

4) Understand the difference between “Bring your OWN license” and “license included” (Express, Standard and web only. Currently enterprise edition not included here) model in RDS SQL Server

5) and unlike SQL Azure, RDS SQL Server charges on a “per hour” basis.

Note the date of this post: 15th may 2012. Things change very fast, so readers-from-the-future please refer to official documents.

BTW, here are the few blog posts from the web-o-sphere:

1. Expanding the Cloud for Windows Developers

2. First Look – SQL Server on Amazon Web Services RDS

3. Official resource: AWS RDS SQL Server

That’s about it for this post.

How do you reduce the network “latency” between application and SQL Azure?

I was at SQL Rally recently (10-11 may 2012) where I happened to have a nice talk about SQL Azure with a fellow attendee. They were considering porting their database (that supports one of their apps) to Microsoft’s cloud service. One of the concern they had was “How to reduce the network latency between SQL Azure and their App?” And Since I knew the solution, I shared it with that person. I am sharing it here so others can benefit too.

Now one of the first question that I asked the attendee was: Are you also porting your app along with the database to Azure?

Turns out, They were considering to host the app on Azure cloud too. So technically that’s called a “Code Near” scenario – And in this case, the application and the database both *should* reside in the same data-center. if you do so, the network latency between your app and the database is minimal.

Now, if you have your app on-premise and you are considering SQL Azure, then select the data-center location that has the minimal network latency between your app and SQL azure. Technically it’s called Code-Far scenario I have written about one of the ways you can do so, here’s the URL: Testing latency between client and SQL Azure via client statistics in SSMS

That’s about it for this post.

Official Resource: SQL Azure and Data access

what’s the role of a “Master” database in a SQL Azure world?

One of the question that pops up in the head of first-time SQL Azure user is “What is Master Database doing in my server”. They try to delete/drop it. That does not happen. Fun fact: I tried dropping Master database when I had got my hand on SQL Azure for the first time. Any-who what we speculate is that  “OMG! I paying for this SQL Azure Master database!” Wait…No, read this:

You are not charged for the SQL Azure Master Database.

Ok Good news, But why does this “read-only” master database exist?

Here is the information I have used that is available via SQL Azure Master Database:

  • It has SQL Azure usage metrics
  • It stores logins for a given SQL Azure LOGICAL server (To manage Server-Level security)
  • To view list of all databases via sys.databases
  • To create databases via TSQL. You do that by logging into master database first.

What do use SQL Azure master database for?

That’s about it for this post.

And Let’s connect! I Look forward to Interacting with you on any of these people networks:

paras doshi blog on facebookparas doshi twitterparas doshi google plus

Reports hosted on SQL Azure reporting (preview) accessed via Windows Phone, iPhone and Android phones!

Here are screenshots of reports hosted on SQL Azure reporting preview accessed via Windows Phone, iPhone and Android Smartphone. I knew one can access reports using browser and so just wanted to test them on Windows Phone, iPhone and Android.

Note: Report is just for demo purpose. So I have kept it very simple.

Here are the screenshots:

1. Windows Phone:windows phone sql azure reporting

2. iPhone:iPhone SQL Azure reporting

3. Android Smartphone:
sql azure reporting android phone

Note: I have not tested it but I have heard reports on SQL Azure reporting are accessible via iPad too. 

Simran Jindal confirmed that It works great on iPad too!

Conclusion: These opens up a whole new world of possibilities for businesses. Business users would be able to get access to reports from anywhere in the world. Think of reports that are built on top of Data Marts hosted on cloud. They are kept in sync with Data that resides on-premise (locally). We have exciting times ahead!

Resource:
Getting Started Guide for Report Readers (SQL Azure Reporting)
Guidelines and Limitations for SQL Azure Reporting Preview