It became tradition for the Azure SQL Managed Instance (SQL MI) team to use period of Ignite and PASS Data Community Summit conferences to reflect on the product innovations that marked current year, and 2023 is no exception to that.
During this year, SQL MI has been continuously improved based on critical feedback from customers who were on their migration and modernization journey to Azure.
Recent set of features further strengthened reputation of SQL MI being the optimal choice for modernizing large SQL estates in Azure, offering the lowest barrier of entry along with the highest outcome of modernization and combining the best of SQL Server features with all the
Earlier this year, we announced a considerable number of features, significantly extending service capabilities in terms of performance, security, and potential for application modernization in new hybrid scenarios. Here is the quick recap of these announcements along with ideas how to use them in your scenarios.
Cost-efficient use of Azure SQL Managed Instance as passive disaster-recovery replica for your SQL Servers running on-premises or in other clouds or for another SQL Managed Instance running in a different region in Azure.
Ability to create Azure SQL Managed Instance on wider set of sponsored subscriptions for free of charge evaluation.
What is announced at Microsoft Ignite and PASS Data Community Summit
Product updates that are coming for these two big conferences aim to improve customer experience in the following key areas of customer interest.
Optimal cost of running in the cloud
The economy of running in the cloud is an enduring theme for all customers who try to do more with less, especially in times of economic uncertainty. SQL MI team continues with investments that help customers optimize their spending by using the following capabilities as generally available(GA):
Start/Stop instance, for dynamic resource adjustment to the variable workloads and paying for compute only when instance is started.
However, having an additional level of protection for a rare event of a zonal outage became de facto standard in many industries and we reacted to that feedback.
We are happy to announce that as of today both service tiers support zone redundant configuration: Business Critical in GA (after being in preview since November 2022), while General Purpose will open public preview.
Zone redundant configuration utilizes Azure Availability Zones to replicate your instances across multiple physical locations within an Azure region. By selecting zone redundant configuration, you can make your managed instances resilient to a much larger set of failures, including catastrophic datacenter outages, without any changes of the application logic.
You can enable the zone redundant configuration for your new and existing Azure SQL Managed Instance. For more details, explore this blogpost.
Hybrid flexibility and disaster recovery
In parallel with the increased focus on cloud modernization, our customers voiced a strong request for having the flexibility to move, copy, synchronize and process data in hybrid environments which are spanning across Azure, on-premises, and other clouds.
We are happy to announce a new coherent set of features that will significantly improve data mobility and processing across diverse environments.
Disaster recovery for SQL Server 2022 with Link feature for Managed instance entered unlimited public preview, after a period of being in preview with sign up. In this blogpost you can learn about additional capabilities that were added to MI link in the meantime to support hybrid DR scenarios.