Getting the Most From Azure Storage
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The Azure Storage suite of services form the core foundation of much of the rest of the Azure services ecosystem. Blobs are low-level data primitives that can store any data type and size. Tables provide inexpensive, scalable NoSQL storage of key/value data pairs. Azure queues provide a messaging substrate to asynchronously and reliably connect distinct elements of a distributed system. Azure files provide an SMB-compatible file system for enabling lift-and-shift scenarios of legacy applications that use file shares. Azure disks provide consistent, high-performance storage for virtual machines running in the cloud.
In this Introduction to Azure Storage course you'll learn about the features of these core services, and see demonstrations of their use. Specifically, you will:
- Define the major components of Azure Storage
- Understand the different types of blobs and their intended use
- Learn basic programming APIs for table storage
- Discover how queues are used to pipeline cloud compute node together
- Learn to integrate Azure files with multiple applications
- Understand the tradeoffs between standard/premium storage and unmanaged/managed disks
Welcome to Cloud Academy's course, An Introduction to Azure Storage: Elastic Data Services in the Microsoft Cloud. This is an intermediate-level course that assumes some prior knowledge for the student. Azure Storage is frequently used by developers writing cloud-integrated software, so this course is especially useful for that audience.
However, IT pros responsible for managing and securing data assets in Azure will also benefit from the topics covered here. Finally, to get the most from this course, you should have a basic familiarity with cloud computing and Azure. Some prior exposure to the Azure Management Portal is helpful, though not strictly necessary.
Upon completion of the course, you should be comfortable with the following topics: defining the major components of Azure Storage, understanding the different types of blob storage and their intended use, learning the basic programming APIs for table storage, discovering how queues are used to join compute nodes in a processing pipeline, learning to integrate Azure files with multiple applications, and finally, understanding the tradeoffs between standard and premium storage and unmanaged versus managed storage disks.
A brief note about your instructor. I'm Josh Lane, a Cloud Academy researcher and instructor. I've been a software developer focused on cloud and data technologies for several years, and have worked around the world for clients in industries such as energy, finance, and more. I was awarded Microsoft's Azure MVP designation for both my development work and my activities promoting cloud and Azure technologies in the technology community at large.
Thanks for attending the course. Before we start, let's review the course agenda. First, you'll review the Azure Storage service and the major features it contains. You'll understand the different types of storage accounts you can create, as well as options for high availability and secure access of your storage artifacts.
After this, you will learn more specifics about the different service options within the storage umbrella, binary blobs, NoSQL tables, queues for asynchronous messaging, cloud-based file storage, and disks for use with Azure Virtual Machines. You'll see several demonstrations of these core services in action.
Finally, you'll wrap up with a discussion on important storage topics, like pricing, security, and performance considerations handling concurrent access in transient errors and more.
About the Author
Josh Lane is a Microsoft Azure MVP and Azure Trainer and Researcher at Cloud Academy. He’s spent almost twenty years architecting and building enterprise software for companies around the world, in industries as diverse as financial services, insurance, energy, education, and telecom. He loves the challenges that come with designing, building, and running software at scale. Away from the keyboard you'll find him crashing his mountain bike, drumming quasi-rythmically, spending time outdoors with his wife and daughters, or drinking good beer with good friends.