What’s New for SQL Server in Azure – January 2016

What’s New for SQL Server in Azure – January 2016

Author by Concurrency Blog

  • New configuration options for SQL Server VM Images

SQL Server VM Images

In the original Service Manager deployment model, selecting a SQL Server image gave you few choices that were distinct from any other VM being set up. Automatic Updates could be turned on; a virtual network is selected; endpoints could be configured.

Some features were added in 2015 – the ability to schedule backups to Azure storage, enabling encryption, and automatic SQL Server patching. However, that is a small subset of the configuration most DBAs would perform on a new SQL Server.

In the Resource Manager deployment model, new configuration options have been introduced!

You can select the port for SQL Server. You can enable SQL authentication – and set an sa password – during creation.

Storage configuration is one of the more useful new settings. You can select your IOPS, throughput, and storage size. If you increase these, the VM will automatically be created with pooled disks.


You can also set up automatic backups and automatic patching.

My take: these options are nice, but they aren’t the settings I’m interested in configuring. What I’m interested in:

  • Choosing which services get installed – I don’t need, or want, SSAS, SSIS, and SSRS on all of my servers.
  • Disk layout – I want separate drives for data, log, and tempdb. I also want to be able to specify how many tempdb files are created, and at what size (which I can do in the SQL Server 2016 setup).
  • Post-install, I still have to configure settings such as MAXDOP and Cost threshold for parallelism, which are still left at the defaults of 0 and 5, respectively.

Even with these changes, I still recommend a complete SQL Server installation checklist, so no important settings are overlooked! 


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