Comparing DBaaS Options from Amazon and Microsoft

Comparing DBaaS Options from Amazon and MicrosoftCloud-based computing holds promise for businesses that no longer need to own and maintain costly fixed-hardware assets. Seeing the benefits of lower costs and scale-as-needed capability, businesses are pursuing the cloud in ever increasing numbers. Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) offerings are increasingly attractive to IT professionals.

Microsoft Azure SQL Databases is part of the larger Azure universe of cloud-based services. As the name implies, it is a SQL-based system that offers hybrid database and storage solutions for IT professionals who want some assets to remain fixed in their datacenters.

Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) “makes it easy to set up, operation, and scale a relational database in the cloud,” according to Amazon. The company now offers six different database engines.

Datavail has released a white paper exploring two DBaaS offerings, “Microsoft Azure SQL Databases vs. Amazon RDS: Apples and Oranges or Two Peas in a Pod?” In it, we look at these similar services and parse out the differences in features, including system architecture, backup capability, scaling, and database size. We also discuss pricing, although both services are new enough that details on pricing are still in flux.

Microsoft Azure SQL Databases is part of the larger Azure universe of cloud-based services. As the name implies, it is a SQL-based system that offers hybrid database and storage solutions for IT professionals who want some assets to remain fixed in their datacenters.

Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) “makes it easy to set up, operation, and scale a relational database in the cloud,” according to Amazon. The company now offers six different database engines.

Below is a brief summary of the features of each service. For more details, please download our white paper. (URL)

Below is a brief summary of the features for each service. For more details, please contact Datavail.

  • Architecture: Amazon dedicates hardware resources to the user, while Microsoft shares resources among users.
  • Backup and Restore: Amazon offers eight days of backups plus log backup and restoration, while Microsoft requires users to configure backups manually.
  • Scaling Up and/or Scaling Out: Both services allow users to scale both up (adding more CPUs) or out (increasing the I/O in the environment).
  • Database Size: The maximum size for a database in Amazon RDS varies based on the database engine chosen (you can use any one of six options). Microsoft Azure SQL Databases limits database size and number based on the type of account purchased.
  • Tools: Amazon RDS is an instance of MySQL and offers MySQL features and tools, along with a few added tools for production database migration. Microsoft uses features from SQL Server 2008 and tools in SQL Server Management Studio 2008 R2.
  • Container Support: Both services offer container support with Docker integration for the use of containers.
  • Database Offerings: Amazon RDS offers a choice of database engines, including MySQL, Aurora, PostgreSQL, Oracle, DynamoDB, and Maria DB. Azure allows users to create a MySQL database using ClearDB.

So how do you think the two compare? Let us know, we’d love to hear your thoughts.

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JP Chen
Practice Leader of SQL Server Services
JP has over 13 years of experience in the IT industry specializing in web development, data analysis, and database administration. He has worked on supporting enterprise level corporations in the financial, retailing, pharmaceutical, aerospace, fashion, and education industries as a DBA and Tech Lead. He has initiated, designed, and developed comprehensive solutions on database documentation, monitoring and alerting, stabilization, and continuous improvements with performance monitoring and tuning. He enjoys sharing his new findings, knowledge, and practical hands-on experiences on SQL Server via his two blogs: www.handsonsqlserver.com and www.handsontsql.com.

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