Azure SQL Database Managed Instance

Azure SQL Database Managed Instance is a new flavor of Azure SQL Database that is a game changer.  It offers near-complete SQL Server compatibility and network isolation to easily lift and shift databases to Azure (you can literally backup an on-premise database and restore it into an Azure SQL Database Managed Instance).  Think of it as an enhancement to Azure SQL Database that is built on the same PaaS infrastructure and maintains all it’s features (i.e. active geo-replication, high availability, automatic backups, database advisor, threat detection, intelligent insights, vulnerability assessment, etc) but adds support for databases up to 35TB, VNET, SQL Agent, cross-database querying, replication, etc.  So, you can migrate your databases from on-prem to Azure with very little migration effort which is a big improvement from the current Singleton or Elastic Pool flavors which can require substantial changes.

I have created a presentation about Managed Instance here.  If you are not familiar with Azure SQL Database, first check out my introduction presentation.

Azure SQL Database Managed Instance is in private preview, and will be in public preview this calendar year and it will be generally available next calendar year.

For more details see the presentation at Ignite by Drazen Sumic called “Modernize your on-premises applications with SQL Database Managed Instances (BRK2217)” and this blog post by Lindsey Allen.

There was also a presentation at Ignite called “What’s new with Azure SQL Database: Focus on your business, not on the database (BRK2230)” on the new features in SQL Database (Adaptive Query Processing, SQL Graph, Automatic Tuning, Intelligent Insights, Vulnerability Assessment, Service Endpoint) as well details on Azure Data Sync and an introduction to Managed Instances.

More info:

Native database backup in Azure SQL Managed Instance

Top Questions from New Users of Azure SQL Database

Managed Instances versus Azure SQL Database—What’s the Right Solution for You?

About James Serra

James is a big data and data warehousing solution architect at Microsoft. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 25 years of IT experience.
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4 Responses to Azure SQL Database Managed Instance

  1. Thanks James, this sounds a like real game changer, allowing the potential to migrate from on-premises to the cloud with little or minimal re-code. Are there any features that are given up or a downside when using this approach rather than building a cloud focused database design?

    • James Serra says:

      Hi Andrew,

      Slides 20-22 talk about the few features that are obsolete in the cloud or have a better alternative, as well as the few features not available by GA. When adding in all the benefits of being on the cloud, using Azure SQL Database Managed Instance is a no-brainer 🙂

  2. JoeD says:

    Is this GA? I thought it was still in private beta (or whatever they call that).

    • James Serra says:

      Hi Joe,

      Azure SQL Database Managed Instance is in private preview, and will be in public preview this calendar year and it will be generally available next calendar year.

      I have updated the blog post with this info.

      Thanks!

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