Recent outage in one of the availability zones in Southeast Asia region of Microsoft Azure, has triggered many questions among several customers about highly available infrastructure. Many of the customers were impacted due to this outage and intermittent downtime had triggered few questions related to the credibility of infrastructure in cloud such as ‘Are clouds really reliable?’, ‘Can cloud be trusted?’? etc.
In today's digital age, downtime is simply not an option. For businesses, a few minutes of system downtime can mean significant financial losses, loss of productivity, and a negative impact on customer satisfaction. As a result, it's essential to have a resilient IT infrastructure that can withstand disruptions and prevent downtime.
Microsoft Azure offers a range of features and services that can help businesses achieve high availability and resiliency in the cloud. Azure Resiliency is a set of features and services that provide businesses with the ability to design and operate highly available and resilient applications in the cloud. These features and services ensure that your workloads stay up and running, even in the face of infrastructure failures or natural disasters.
Azure Resiliency features and services include:
- Azure Site Recovery: Azure Site Recovery is a disaster recovery solution that helps businesses keep their critical applications and data safe and available in the event of a disruption. It allows you to replicate your workloads to a secondary site or to Azure, and in the event of a disaster, you can fail over to the secondary site or to Azure with minimal downtime.
- Azure Backup: Azure Backup is a backup and recovery solution that helps businesses protect their data and applications against accidental deletion, corruption, and cyberattacks. It allows you to back up your data to Azure, and in the event of a failure, you can quickly restore your data from Azure.
- Azure Load Balancer: Azure Load Balancer is a high availability load balancing service that helps distribute incoming network traffic across multiple servers. It ensures that your applications stay up and running even if one or more servers go down.
- Azure Traffic Manager: Azure Traffic Manager is a DNS-based traffic routing service that helps businesses distribute traffic across multiple regions or data centers. It ensures that your users can access your applications even if one or more data centers go down.
- Azure Availability Zones: Azure Availability Zones are physically separate data centers within an Azure region. They are designed to provide high availability and resiliency by ensuring that your workloads are replicated across multiple data centers.
- Azure Virtual Machine Scale Sets: Azure Virtual Machine Scale Sets is a feature that allows businesses to deploy and manage a set of identical virtual machines. It enables you to scale your application up or down based on demand, and it ensures that your application stays up and running even if one or more virtual machines fail.
- Azure Storage Account: Azure Storage Account is a scalable, highly available, and durable cloud storage solution that enables businesses to store and manage large volumes of unstructured data in the cloud. Azure Storage Account provides different types of storage such as Blob, File, Queue, and Table, to cater to various storage needs. As businesses move their data to the cloud, it's important to ensure that their data remains available and accessible at all times
Azure Resiliency Best Practices
To ensure the highest level of resiliency in Azure, it's important to follow some best practices:
- Use multiple availability zones: Deploying your workloads across multiple availability zones will ensure that your workloads stay up and running even if one availability zone goes down (like what we saw in recent outage).
- Use Azure Site Recovery: Azure Site Recovery is a critical service that provides disaster recovery capabilities for your applications and data. By using it, you can ensure that your applications are available even in the event of a disaster.
- Use Azure Backup: Azure Backup provides a reliable and cost-effective way to protect your data and applications against accidental deletion, corruption, and cyberattacks. By using it, you can ensure that your data is always available and recoverable.
- Use Azure Load Balancer: Azure Load Balancer helps distribute incoming network traffic across multiple servers. By using it, you can ensure that your applications stay up and running even if one or more servers go down.
- Use Azure Traffic Manager: Azure Traffic Manager helps distribute traffic across multiple regions or data centers. By using it, you can ensure that your users can access your applications even if one or more data centers go down.
- Azure Storage Account: Azure Storage Account automatically replicates your data to multiple storage nodes within a data center to ensure high availability and durability of your data. You can choose from different replication options such as Locally Redundant Storage (LRS), Zone Redundant Storage (ZRS), Geo-Redundant Storage (GRS), and Geo-Zone-Redundant Storage (GZRS) to meet your specific needs.
a) Choose the right replication option: Storage Account provides different replication options to cater to different needs. Choose the replication option that best meets your data durability and availability requirements.
b) Replicate to other regions: Replicate your data to other regions for disaster recovery purposes. This ensures that your data is always available and accessible, even in the event of a regional disaster.
c) Use snapshot and backup: Take regular snapshots and backups of your data to ensure that you can restore your data in the event of accidental deletion or corruption.
d) Monitor your storage account: Monitor your storage account for any anomalies or issues. Use Azure Monitor to set up alerts to notify you when any issues occur.
Azure Resiliency is a critical set of features and services that help businesses ensure that their applications and data stay. Azure provides a range of features and services to ensure the availability and durability of your data. By following best practices and using the right resiliency features, businesses can ensure that their data is always available and accessible, even in the event of an infrastructure failure or disaster. We, at Telstra Purple help you with that!