Enhancing Azure Files resilience and performance
Published May 20 2024 05:07 PM 1,220 Views
Microsoft

Azure Files provides the best-in-class fully managed file share solution in the cloud. We are excited to showcase several new capabilities, some already launched and others upcoming, all aimed at enhancing your application reliability and performance, when using Azure Files.


Snapshot support for NFS File Shares
You can now take point-in-time snapshots of Azure File shares using NFS. This enables users to roll back their entire file share to a previous point in time or restore specific files that were accidentally deleted or corrupted. Customers can now perform share-level snapshot management via the Azure portal, REST API, Azure PowerShell, and Azure CLI. This feature is now available in all Azure public cloud regions. Get started with snapshots here.

 

Soft Delete Support for NFS File Shares
Soft delete which is currently available on SMB file shares will light up for NFS File Shares (soon to be in preview). This will enable you to easily recover data that may be mistakenly deleted by an application or due to user error. Soft delete for file shares is enabled at the storage account level and will apply to all file shares (incl. SMB and NFS) within a storage account. Soft delete is enabled by default for new storage accounts and can be disabled or enabled at any time. Soft delete is not automatically enabled for existing storage accounts. Keep an eye on the what’s new page for the upcoming announcement.

 

Geo-redundancy for large file shares
Geo-redundancy is now supported for large file shares using SMB. Previously, Azure Files provided 100 TiB standard SMB shares with both locally redundant storage (LRS) and zone-redundant storage (ZRS). However, geo-redundant file shares had a 5 TiB capacity limit and were also limited on IO operations per second (IOPS) and throughput. Now, geo-redundant standard SMB file shares support up to 100 TiB capacity with higher IOPS and throughput limits. Geo-redundancy is vital for meeting various compliance and regulatory requirements, as it allows for asynchronous replication to a secondary region and the ability to initiate a failover if the primary region becomes unavailable. This advancement ensures a more robust and compliant data storage solution for Azure Files users.  To get started, please read the documentation.

 

Vaulted Backups for Azure Files
You can now protect business-critical data stored in Azure Files from data loss with backup vaults for Azure Files. A vault is a logical entity that stores the backups and recovery points created over time. You can now define a schedule and retention policy in Azure Backup to manage the lifecycle and automate off-site backups.

Key benefits of vaulted backups:

  • An off-site copy of data that can be used to recover if source data is compromised.
  • Protection against accidental or malicious deletion of specific containers or the entire source storage account.
  • Long-term retention of backup data for up to 10 years to meet compliance requirements.

Vaulted backups feature for Azure Files is currently in public preview. Read the public preview announcement and click here to get started.

 

Metadata Caching for Premium SMB File Shares
Azure Files users running metadata-heavy workloads will now be able to achieve lower latency for file workloads running on Windows/Linux clients. Workloads will also experience consistent latency making metadata-intensive workloads more predictable and deterministic. This will assist customers with running workloads that are heavy in Metadata IO, which include:

  • Web\App Services: Frequently accessed files for CMS\LMS services such as Moodle\WordPress.
  • Indexing\Batch Jobs: Large scale processing using Azure Kubernetes or Azure Batch.
  • Virtual Desktop Infrastructure: Azure Virtual Desktop\Citrix users with home directories or VDI applications with general purpose file system needs.

How to get started: Read the full announcement here. Please sign up here and provide your details.

 

Faster server provisioning and disaster recovery for Azure File Sync servers
With Azure File Sync you can now provision new server endpoints and recover from sync server failures at a significantly faster pace. This enhancement is particularly beneficial for Azure File Sync topologies with cloud endpoints associated with Azure File Shares containing more than 10 million files and folders, although it will positively impact all sizes.

This feature allows customers faster access to data when they add the first server endpoint to their sync topology, expand their existing topology with an additional server endpoint, or when recovering from a disaster. It will be available in a limited public preview with the release of the Azure File Sync v18 agent. This update is designed to provide a more efficient experience for all Azure File Sync users. Please sign up here for public preview.

 

Increased max file size support to 8 TiB
Previously Azure Files supported a max file size of 4 TiB, support for up to 8 TiB max file size is now in preview.  To participate in the preview, email us and provide your subscription id to get access.

 

Share Your Feedback
Your feedback is invaluable to us as it shapes and refines Azure Files. Please take a moment to share your feedback with us.

 

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Last update:
‎May 29 2024 08:22 AM
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