Azure storage types

In this azure tutorial, we will discuss about Azure storage types. Apart from this, we will also discuss on below topics

Azure Storage Types
  • Azure storage architecture
  • Azure storage tiers
  • How to switch between storage tiers in Azure
  • Azure storage type for VM

Azure storage types

Before discussing the Azure storage types, let’s discuss little bit about an Azure storage account.

An Azure storage account is something that contains all the Azure storage data objects. The Azure storage data objects are like blobs, files, queues, tables, and disks, etc.

Once you store the data inside the Azure storage account that becomes more secure, scalable, durable, and highly available.

Azure storage account helps you providing a unique namespace for your Azure storage data and another important thing is that with the help of the unique namespace your Azure storage data is accessible from anywhere in the world over HTTP or HTTPS.

To create a storage account in the Azure portal, you can refer to my article on Create storage account.

Below are different storage types in Azure

  • File
  • Blob
  • Queue
  • Disks
  • Table
Azure storage types

Azure File storage

This storage feature offers regular file shares in the cloud or on-premises environments.

The Azure file storage features uses the standard Server Message Block (SMB) protocol.

This storage is also designed to support the file shares between the virtual machines or can store files there that can be accessed from different Virtual Machines.

This act like a local file share. It is a great solution for moving your local file shares to the cloud as well as “lifting and shifting” data to the cloud.

Azure File Storage Pricing

For LRS Redundancy, the price for Azure file storage is as below

LRS Redundancy

PremiumStandard
GiB/month₹22.209 per provisioned GiB₹4.363 per used GiB
Snapshots GiB/month₹18.507 perused GiB₹4.363 per used GiB

Operations and Data Transfer prices

StandardPremium
Put, Create Container Operations (per 10,000)₹0.9915Free
List Operations (per 10,000)₹0.9915Free
All other operations except Delete, which is free (per 10,000)₹0.0992Free
Geo-Replication Data Transfer (per GiB)N/AFree

ZRS Redundancy

PremiumStandard
GiB/monthN/A₹5.453 per used GiB
Snapshots GiB/monthN/A₹5.453 per used GiB

Operations and Data Transfer prices

StandardPremium
Put, Create Container Operations (per 10,000)₹1.2394Free
List Operations (per 10,000)₹0.9915Free
All other operations except Delete, which is free (per 10,000)₹0.0992Free
Geo-Replication Data Transfer (per GiB)N/AFree

For more details you can refer to Microsoft official site

Azure Blob storage

Azure Blob storage allows to store unstructured data. We can store massive data like text files, images, audios, and videos, media files, or application installers, etc.

These data can be accessed from any place via protocols like HTTP or HTTPS.

Azure Blob storage allows to store data for disaster recovery, backup, and archiving, videos for streaming, storing data for shared access.

There are three types of Azure blob storage

Azure Blob storage types

Block Blobs storage

These are small blocks with unique IDS.One block blob can contain up to 50,000 blocks.

Append Blobs storage

We cannot update or delete any existing blocks. In Block Blobs storage unique IDs are not kept secret but Here all the unique IDs are kept secret.

Page Blobs storage

The maximum size of a page blob is 8 TB.

Azure Blobs storage Pricing

For LRS Redundancy, the price for Azure Block Blobs storage is as below

PremiumHOTCOOLARCHIVE
First 50 terabyte (TB) / month₹13.88022 per GB₹1.3220 per GB₹1.00467 per GB₹0.13220 per GB
Next 450 TB / month₹13.88022 per GB₹1.2691 per GB₹1.00467 per GB₹0.13220 per GB
Over 500 TB / month₹13.88022 per GB₹1.2162 per GB₹1.00467 per GB₹0.13220 per GB

Operations and Data Transfer prices

PremiumHOTCOOLARCHIVE
Write operations (per 10,000)1₹1.6194₹3.6353₹6.6097₹7.9316
List and Create Container Operations₹4.6268₹3.6353₹3.6353₹3.6353
Read operations (per 10,000)₹0.1296₹0.2909₹0.6610₹396.5775
Archive High Priority Read (per 10,000)5₹4,626.7375
All other Operations (per 10,000),
except Delete, which is free
₹0.1296₹0.2909₹0.2909₹0.2909
Data Retrieval (per GB)FreeFree₹0.6610₹1.5864
Archive High Priority Retrieval (per GB)5₹9.2535
Data Write (per GB)4FreeFreeFreeFree

For more details you can refer to Microsoft official site

Azure Queue storage

Azure Queue storage is a service that can store large numbers of messages that can be accessed from anywhere in the world using HTTP or HTTPS.

The size of a queue message can be up to 64 KB.

Azure Queue storage Pricing

STORAGE CAPACITYLRSGRSRA-GRS
Storage in GB/Month₹3.2718 per GB₹4.3624 per GB₹5.4530 per GB

Operations and data transfer prices

LRSGRSRA-GRS
Queue Class 1* operations (in 10,000)₹0.0238₹0.0238₹0.0238
Queue Class 2** operations (in 10,000)₹0.0238₹0.0238₹0.0238
Geo-replication data transfer (per GB)N/AFreeFree

Azure Disks storage

This is a virtual hard disk which behaves almost similarly like a physical hard disk.

Azure Disks storage is of two types

  • Managed
  • Unmanaged
Azure Disks storage type

In case of managed disks storage, we can have one storage account for each Azure region.

In the case of Unmanaged disks storage, We need to have storage accounts that can hold the disks for Azure virtual machine.

There are four types of managed disks

  • Ultra SSD Managed Disks
  • Premium SSD Managed Disks
  • Standard SSD Managed Disks
  • Standard HDD Managed Disks

Azure Disks storage pricing

DISK SIZEPRICE PER MONTH1-YEAR PRICEIOPS PER DISKTHROUGHPUT PER DISKPRICE
P14 GiB₹55.53N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P28 GiB₹111.05N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P316 GiB₹222.09N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P432 GiB₹348.96N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P664 GiB₹674.65N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P10128 GiB₹1,302.76N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P15256 GiB₹2,512.47N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P20512 GiB₹4,839.57N/AUp to 3,500 Provisioned 120Up to 170 MB/second
Provisioned 25 MB/second
P301 TiB₹8,934.24₹8,487.86045,000200 MB/second
P402 TiB₹17,121.95₹16,265.18547,500250 MB/second
P504 TiB₹32,755.04₹31,120.31757,500250 MB/second
P608 TiB₹62,532.35₹59,404.004716,000500 MB/second
P7016 TiB₹1,19,109.41₹1,13,156.7818,000750 MB/second
P8032 TiB ₹2,38,218.16₹2,26,308.052220,000900 MB/second

For more details you can refer to Microsoft official site

Azure Table storage

The Azure Table storage allows to store structured data. It stores NoSQL data.

This service allows to store structured, non-relational data.

Azure Table Storage Pricing

STORAGE CAPACITYLRSGRSRA-GRSZRSGZRSRA-GZRS
Storage in GB/Month₹3.2718 per GB₹4.3624 per GB₹5.4530 p GB₹4.0848 p GBN/A p GBN/A p GB

Operations and Data Transfer prices

It is ₹0.023795 per 10,000 transactions for tables

Azure storage tiers

Azure storage offers three types of access tiers

  • Hot access tiers
  • Cool access tiers
  • Archive access tiers

Hot access tiers

  • Hot access tier is used in case of the data that are frequently used or read and write very frequently.
  • For this tier, the storage costs are higher compare to cool and Archive access tiers but the access cost is less.
  • Hot access tier can be set at the account level.

Cool access tiers

  • Cool access tier is used in case of the data that are not used very frequently.
  • Here in case of cool access tiers, the storage cost is less and the access cost is more compare to Hot access tiers.
  • Intended for short-term backup and disaster recovery data and the data will remain here at least for 30 days.
  • Lower SLA (99%) compare to the hot access tier(99.99%).
  • Here the price calculation is based on per GB data.

Archive access tiers

  • Archive access tier is used to store various rarely used data or archival data, etc.
  • This service has the lowest storage cost compare to hot and cool access tiers. This is the cheapest one in terms of storage cost but the data retrieval costs are more.
  • Data will remain in the archive tier for at least 180 days.
  • Intended for Long-term backup, secondary backup, and archival data.

These are the three data tiers that are supported in General Purpose storage V2 and Blob storage accounts.

How to switch between storage tiers in Azure

We can switch between the storage tiers in Azure. Let’s discuss on what are the steps to switch between the storage tiers.

One more important thing to note here is that the Hot and Cool tiers can be enabled at the storage account level or at the blob level but the Archive tier can only be enabled at the blob level.

To switch the storage access tier, follow the below steps

Step-1: Login to the Azure portal and search for the storage accounts then click on the Storage accounts (classic).

How to Switch Between Storage Tiers in Azure

Step-2: On the Storage accounts (classic) page, click on the storage account for which you want to switch the storage tiers.

How to switch between storage tiers in Azure portal

Step-3: On the Storage account page, click on the Configuration link from the left navigation.

Now select the Access tier (default) option from Hot to Cool and then click on the Save button to apply the changes.

How to change the storage tiers in Azure portal

Step-4: Now to cross-check the changes are done successfully, you can browse the storage account and click on the Configuration link to check the option. You can see below the Access tier has been changed from Hot to Cool.

switch between storage tiers in Azure

To switch the tier of a specific blob inside the storage account, click on the Containers under the Blob service

Change storage tiers in Azure

Click on the container name and select the blob from inside the container and then click on the Change tier from the top menu or from the (…) three-dot button.

how to switch the tier of a specific blob inside the storage account

Now on the Change tier window, select the appropriate tier from the Access tier option and click on the Save button to apply the changes,

switch between storage tiers in azure storage

If you want to change tier to Archive, you will get a warning message “Setting the access tier to Archive will make your blob inaccessible until it is rehydrated back to Hot or Cool, which may take several hours”. You can select the Archive option and then click on the Save button to apply the changes.

how to configure the tier of a specific blob inside the storage account

You can see below the Access tier option has been changed to Archive for a specific blob inside the storage account

how to switch the tier of a specific blob inside the storage account in Azure

Azure storage architecture

The Azure storage access architecture contains three layers

  • Front End Layer
  • Partition Layer
  • Stream Layer

We can access the Blob/Disk, Table, Queue storage type with the help of REST API and File Share can be accessed by REST API and SMB protocols. These are part of the Front End Layer.

The responsibility of the Front-End layer is to receive incoming requests, their authentication, and authorization, and then delivers them to the Partition layer

Auto Balancing Layer is nothing but the Partition layer that is present in between the front end layer and the replication layer.

Replication layer is the lowest layer as part of the Azure storage architecture. This is nothing but the Stream layer.

Azure storage architecture
  • All the services reside inside the storage account. Blob services, Table services, Queue services, File services are the part of Storage account.
  • We have containers inside Blob services and again inside the Containers Blobs resides.
  • Tables are present inside the Table services again inside tables we have the data in the form of Entities.
  • Next, we have Queues inside the Queue services and again Messages are present inside the Queues.
  • File Shares are there inside the File services and Files are the part of File shares.
azure storage type for vm

Azure storage type for VM

Let’s discuss here about the Azure storage types for the virtual machine.

Microsoft provides three types of storage for the virtual machine

  • Standard HDD Storage
  • Standard SSD Storage
  • Premium SSD Storage

Standard HDD Storage

  • Standard HDD Storage is like a traditional hard disk model and offered as unmanaged Standard HDD storage.
  • For standard HDD storage, Microsoft charges based on the amount of storage consumed.

Standard SSD Storage

  • Standard SSD storage is like Solid State Storage and offered as Managed disks.
  • For Standard SSD storage, Microsoft charges based on the amount of storage allocated.

Premium SSD Storage

  • Premium SSD storage is also like Solid State Storage.
  • Only Premium Storage capable virtual machines support attaching Premium SSD Storage to them.

One important thing you need to keep in mind is that all Managed disk is charged by the amount of space allocated, but the Unmanaged HDD storage is only charged for the amount of space consumed.

These are the four Azure storage type provided by Microsoft in case of the virtual machines.

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Conclusion

In this tutorial, we learned the below things:

  • Azure storage architecture
  • Azure storage tiers
  • How to switch between storage tiers in Azure
  • Azure storage type for VM

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