Introduction to Azure Cosmos DB
1h 8m

Cosmos DB is one of many database solutions in a crowded market. From DynamoDB to Cassandra to CockroachDB, the questions one would naturally ask when examining Cosmos DB are, “what makes it special, and how can I get started with it?”

This course answers both of those questions as thoroughly and concisely as possible. This course is for anyone with an interest in database technologies or creating software using Microsoft Azure. Whether you are a DevOps engineer, a database admin, a product manager, or a sales expert, this course will help you learn how to power your technology with one of Azure's most innovative data solutions.

From this course, you will learn how to make use of Cosmos DB's incredible flexibility and performance. This course is made up of nine comprehensive lectures to guide you from the basics to how to create your own app using Cosmos DB.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn the basic components of Cosmos DB
  • Learn how to use Cosmos DB via the web portal, libraries, and CLI tools
  • Learn how to create an application with Cosmos DB as the data backend

Intended Audience

  • People looking to build applications using Microsoft Azure
  • People interested in database technologies


  • General knowledge of IT architecture
  • General knowledge of databases

Greetings. Welcome to Cloud Academy's course on Microsoft Cosmos DB. I'm delighted to have you join me on what is bound to be an educational and delightful adventure into the world of database technology. First, I'll let you know a little bit about myself before I get into the course outline. My name is Jonathan. I'm one of the course developers with Cloud Academy. I work professionally as a technical consultant specializing in DevOps, data engineering, and security. Long ago in another life, I was a public school teacher, so I love educating people and I'm thrilled to be doing it again, only now, with technology. 

This course is designed to be very practical. It's meant for technology professionals, DevOps engineers, data architects, CTOs, etc, with the goal of helping them get a solid understanding of Cosmos DB in a short time. So, what exactly are the prerequisites then for a course like that? Well, we're going to be doing a pretty deep dive on the Cosmos DB architecture and its varying data models. For that reason, we recommend that people have some basic knowledge of database technologies. You should also have at least a passing familiarity with Microsoft Azure and cloud hosting generally. So, when I talk about how an Azure service can talk to Cosmos DB, I'm going to assume that the students know what that means at a high level. In short, if you have any technical experience working with cloud providers and databases, you'll probably be fine. If this is your first time learning about databases, then maybe you'll struggle a bit.

So, what are the exact learning objectives for a course like this? Well, I've narrowed it down to three big ones that will guide each section. Objective one, is to ensure that the student gains a basic understanding of the Cosmos DB technology, including its feature set and design philosophy and a little bit of history too. Objective two, is to teach students how to use Cosmos DB, via its APIs, Microsoft CLI tools, and the Azure web console. Finally, objective three, is to give students a practical understanding of how to integrate Cosmos DB with other Azure services with the goal of creating a working app. So in short, what is Cosmos DB, how do we use it, and then concrete example. So, lastly, I would like to encourage everyone to leave feedback. Email if you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or concerns. We always appreciate people taking the time to provide feedback. So now without further ado, let's get started.

About the Author

Jonathan Bethune is a senior technical consultant working with several companies including TopTal, BCG, and Instaclustr. He is an experienced devops specialist, data engineer, and software developer. Jonathan has spent years mastering the art of system automation with a variety of different cloud providers and tools. Before he became an engineer, Jonathan was a musician and teacher in New York City. Jonathan is based in Tokyo where he continues to work in technology and write for various publications in his free time.