What are the problems when hosting applications in the cloud?
To understand the need to hire a new service, whether analog or digital, it is important to start from a problem (theoretical or real) in our business, and the reality and context both at the beginning and at the end of the process.
When we talk about our business applications, for example, many of them store a large number of files. From static resources for web pages (photos, videos, etc.), to critical business files, through confidential documents, forms, or billing templates.
With On-Premise or local storage, managing all these files can become a hassle for our departments due to all the policies and processes involved:
- Software that is often severely limited or does not work effectively with our systems is often used to create the standard BackUp policies.
- Keeping these files secure can be a significant challenge and become repetitive, especially in the case of physical storage.
- A file server crash implies a system crash in general, which affects our work pace. Also, we can irreversibly lose vital files.
- Making files available to other systems located on other networks or servers can be complicated due to the dependency between external and internal connections, not to mention the difficulties in managing permissions to third parties and others.
All these problems now have a solution: Azure Storage will help us manage our files more comfortably and efficiently. And all from the cloud.
What is Azure Storage?
Azure Storage is a set of services that offers scalable and massive “object” storage compared to other online storage formats.
It also allows us to store files from our Azure virtual machines (VMs), cloud archiving systems, secure source message storage, and a NoSQL store, among other services, on a virtual hard drive. All of these have advantages for their use, such as:
- High availability and durability. Your data is protected from hardware failure thanks to redundant Microsoft regions. You have the option to replicate data between data centers or geographic areas for added protection against local catastrophes or natural disasters. Replicated data remains available in the event of an unexpected outage.
- Security. Data contained in an Azure Storage account is encrypted from within Azure. In addition, you will have complete control over who accesses them or not.
- Scalability. This service is designed to be scaled massively and with changes depending on the needs, you have, with data such as your seasonal traffic level. All with the aim of giving you what you need in terms of performance and storage in your applications.
- Management. Forget about the repetitive tasks of every day. Azure will do them for you, including maintenance, upgrades, and critical hardware issues.
- Accessibility. From Azure Storage, you can access your data from anywhere over HTTP or HTTPS. You won’t be short of programming languages either, as Azure Storage provides you with libraries in .NET, Java, Node.js, Python, PHP, Ruby, Go, and others, as well as a consolidated REST API. Of course, Azure Storage supports interacting with it from Azure PowerShell or the Azure CLI. And as a bonus, the Azure portal and the Azure Storage Explorer allow you to work better with the obtained data thanks to simple and visual solutions.
What does Azure Storage offer?
The main Azure Storage products at the technological enterprise level, especially for virtual machines and applications, are:
An object store of all kinds, massively scalable to your needs for text and binary data. It supports Data Lake Storage Gen2 for big data analytics. With Active Directory and RBAC integration, you’ll be protected against advanced threats and unwanted access.
Managed file shares for on-premises and cloud deployments. You can mount those files on any OS to receive data from all kinds of sources.
Trusted messaging service between application components. Helps during workload peaks, preventing dependent or individual systems from collapsing. You can control the flows, and add or remove worker nodes depending on the level of traffic in your applications.
It is a NoSQL store for schema-free storage of structured and semi-structured data. Tables are intended to store at the petabyte scale but remain flexible with the data you can store. It even allows you to create applications with various types of code languages and access from HTTP/HTTPS in any browser.
Large storage volumes for Azure virtual machines. Designed to be durable and high-performance for local and cloud connections. The drives have an error rate of almost 0%, and automatically encrypt the stored data so that it can be shared with more than one company, favoring profitability for your pocket.
What will Azure Storage bring me?
Azure Storage allows us to easily access our files from different platforms. It allows us to forget about the maintenance of the associated infrastructure. It allows us to have the data replicated and highly available for any type of load that is required. And it does so while maintaining security and privacy.
Also noteworthy is the scalability with which all services can be managed: you contract the level of performance you need at the moment and change it the instant those needs change, without complications in billing and availability of your data.
You can find more information from Microsoft Docs, where you will find more detailed guides on each of its capabilities.
Jose Vioque Ojeda – Software Developer at Itequia