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Working with SQL Server Database on Microsoft Azure (Part 1)

Posted by Vivek Shankar

One of the trickiest implementations for any organization is the database. They require a dedicated server and someone to manage it. Cloud services such as Microsoft Azure give organizations the opportunity to store their data on its servers and even manages it for them. It allows the companies to focus on their business instead of worrying about data storage and its management. The topic of discussion in this blog post goes beyond the generic benefits of cloud database management and focuses on database implementation on MS Azure. In fact, it is going to be a three-part series highlighting the use cases of MS Azure SQL Database. First up, we learn how to implement SQL Server Database on MS Azure.

Microsoft Azure SQL Database

Microsoft Azure SQL Database is intelligent, fully managed relational cloud database service, providing broad SQL Server engine compatibility that allows migration of SQL Server databases without changing the applications. It includes built-in intelligence that learns app patterns and adapts to maximize performance, reliability and data protection.

Getting Started

The very first step before you can use any Microsoft Azure service is to obtain a Microsoft account, if you don’t already have one. The email account should end with either ‘@outlook.com’ or ‘@hotmail.com’. We have signed up using @hotmail.com and further completed the Microsoft Azure subscription process. Once you complete the subscription process and login, you’ll see the dashboard as shown in Figure 1.

Note: You can also log into Microsoft Azure without any subscription, by simply creating an account, but you won’t get premium access including creating SQL database.

Figure 1 –

 

Creating SQL Database in MS Azure

Before creating a SQL database in MS Azure, you need to create a resource group as shown in Figure 2. Specify ‘Resource group name’ and ‘Resource group location’ where your server and resources will reside. It is recommended to choose the closest region, for best performance. We have selected ‘Central India’ in ‘Resource group location’. The resource group name will be used while creating the SQL database.

Further, locate any Microsoft Azure cloud website and service in the same region as the SQL Database servers. This will help avoid the bandwidth-based fee charges when cloud sites, services, and databases communicate across different Azure regions, and also reduce latency.

Figure 2 –

After naming and allocating the resources, click SQL databases option on the left to create a SQL database. You’ll see the page, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3 –

On that screen, click the ‘Create SQL databases’ button. It will open the screen as shown in Figure 4, where you can create a database.

Figure 4 – 

You can also create a server to host your SQL database. This server can host multiple databases. All you need to do is create an administrator account, fill in the details, and click on ‘Create’ button. Figure 5 and 6 depict these workings.

Figure 5 –

 

Figure 6 – 

 

We have created a database with the name ‘CustomDB’.

Figure 7 – 

You can further use the ‘Query Editor’ to connect to the database and create the required tables and other database objects, just like we have done as illustrated in figure 8.

Figure 8 – 

With that, we complete our first installment of working with SQL Server Database on MS Azure, wherein we simply registered with MS Azure, learned how to create databases, tables, and other database objects in it. Though it was a simple exercise, it was a significant one because unless you know how to swim, you cannot go swimming. In our next installment, we’ll illustrate how you can migrate the database to MS Azure.

Let us know your views in the comments below.

Until next time!

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