Amazon RDS vs Azure SQL — Know the Key Differentiators and Choose the Best
What is Amazon RDS and Azure SQL? Difference between Amazon RDS vs Azure SQL — Platform | target audience | features | performance | deployment | cost | scaling
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With global enterprises shifting to cloud-managed databases, the world of database management has drastically changed. However, meeting the modern world's needs can be challenging, especially for on-premise deployments. Comparatively, managed cloud databases are scalable and relational database services built for the cloud.
Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure are excellent options for deploying MS SQL Server databases. These databases have proven to be the harbinger of a new era. However, comparing features, advantages, and limitations is essential before deciding on an Amazon AWS or Azure migration. In this post, we will explore these prominent databases and assist you in choosing the right database for your business.
Amazon RDS vs Azure SQL — Which One Is Better?
Cloud computing allows companies to improve team collaboration, lessen capital expenditures, increase scalability, and boost innovation. So naturally, companies that are ill-equipped to handle these changes could fall behind. AWS and Azure are the most trusted members of the cloud domain that fight for a larger piece of the cloud pie.
A stark contrast in the service approach of the two cloud service giants begins with how they offer their SQL Server database services. Microsoft uses the binaries available in its latest version, SQL Server 2019. It ensures that your application always runs on the latest binaries available. Conversely, Amazon offers a mostly fixed versioning model that lets you choose the version you want to use.
Here are the common points of difference between Amazon RDS vs. Azure SQL:
Microsoft’s cloud-based database products are specifically designed for the cloud. For example, Azure SQL runs natively as a service on the Microsoft cloud platform.
Amazon RDS is cloud-capable and does not run natively on the cloud platform. So most apps in MySQL will likely run without problems in Amazon RDS.
2. Target audience
Microsoft Azure mainly targets enterprise apps using 5 GB or fewer databases. But there are more details to Azure SQL than targeted customers, so what may seem limited is more than meets the eye.
On the other hand, Amazon RDS targets a broader user segment and offers high flexibility. It allows up to 1 TB storage per database instance.
Amazon RDS is a flexible, robust, easy-to-use, and stable solution. It facilitates users to select as many tools, zones, regions, and replicas as required. Users like better integration and improved GUI with Microsoft products. However, they feel that Microsoft can improve many security features.
Microsoft Azure users like the seamless product integration with SQL Server on-premises and the darknet stack and table groups. The solution offers a very intuitive interface and easy-to-manage firewall settings. In addition, there are many functions available on-premises that the cloud may not offer.
As Azure SQL is tiered, each level is suited to diverse workloads and broken down into performance levels ranked by Microsoft’s Database Transaction Units. As a result, Microsoft customers can address fluctuations in workload via hosted databases to ensure maximum utilization.
In Amazon RDS, database instances are allocated to calculate resources. However, you need to pay for computing and storage separately to differentiate costs easily. In addition, Amazon RDS helps enhance query performance.
This is the point where Azure SQL and Amazon RDS differ the most. Azure SQL database servers are not virtual. Instead, they are logical containers customized according to customer requirements. Moreover, Azure SQL does not allow specific server-level customization and is based on a multi-tenant architecture.
Instead of focusing on hardware, Azure focuses on cloud performance to fully leverage the intended advantages of cloud computing. The good thing about Microsoft is that it focuses on only charging for what a customer needs. On the other hand, Amazon RDS uses EC2 instances to offer relational database services.
This design allows RDS to allocate resources to databases while provisioning storage capacity separately. Since RDS charges storage separate from computing, its factor costs differ from Azure SQL. The RDS standard level provides up to 6 TB of storage.
6. Cost to Features Ratio
Azure SQL is very cost-effective compared to Amazon RDS as its databases can be replicated automatically across various systems providing read scale-outs and a transparent fail-over mechanism in case of hardware failure. On the other hand, Amazon RDS has disabled replication on its MySQL instances.
As a result, SQL Azure doesn’t offer a parallel to the unique on-demand snapshot-based backup method provided by Amazon RDS. Instead, data in SQL Azure is automatically backed up and restored when a disaster occurs. Again, this is transparent to the user, which offers the high availability of this feature.
Microsoft Azure SQL is highly scalable and economical, allowing a storage limit of only 10 GB per database. As a result, it eliminates the possibility of performance issues from a single bloated database server. Furthermore, with the latest introduction of elastic pools, Microsoft’s concept of the shared database has resulted in better performance and scalability.
Amazon RDS charges separately for storage and computing. Therefore, it is effortless to scale the size of a database on the Amazon platform. In addition, Aurora, as a database product, is easily scalable in automatic increments, making RDS single database growth easy to achieve.
In addition, Amazon RDS can let you add replicas to enhance query performance by supporting read-only horizontal scaling. On the contrary, Azure SQL orchestrates a sharding approach through the Elastic Database tools.
There is stiff competition between Azure SQL and Amazon RDS to deliver the best customer experience. Amazon RDS provides a more server-oriented model with strong backward compatibility for apps. Choosing between Amazon RDS and Azure SQL depends mainly on the type of technology that you are already using. On the other hand, when having a LAMP stack, Amazon RDS works best for you.
If you’re still unsure which to use, consider the reasons for moving your database to the cloud. But, again, it depends on your tech preferences, flexibility, and budget. So, consider these things when choosing a suitable database system for your enterprise.
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