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5 strategies to increase Azure Application availability and uptime

The availability of your application is a given for your customers. But if your application becomes unavailable for any reason, it does have a strong negative impact on customer satisfaction.

Availability is therefore one of the key aspects of cloud computing, as it determines how well your applications and services can meet the expectations and needs of your customers. 

Wesley Haakman


Wesley Haakman Principal Azure Architect

Reading time 4 minutes. Published: 25 March 2024

Strategies to improve uptime and availability

Availability refers to the ability of your system to remain operational and accessible, despite any failures, errors, or disruptions that may occur. Availability is measured by metrics such as uptime, downtime, and service level agreements (SLAs).

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for achieving availability on the Cloud, as different scenarios and requirements may demand different approaches and trade-offs. However, there are some strategies we realise for our customers to significantly improve their availability on Azure. These strategies include configuring the infrastructure and implementing technologies to improve data and resource availability. You can read our 5 key strategies below!

1. Azure Geo-redundancy

Geo-redundancy involves replicating your data and resources across multiple geographic regions to protect your environment from regional outages, disasters, or network issues. Azure offers the following technologies for geo-redundancy:

  • Geo-redundant storage (GRS) copies your data to a secondary region;
  • Geo-redundant traffic manager (GTM) routes your traffic to the best available endpoint in different regions;
  • Azure Site Recovery (ASR) enables you to replicate and failover your virtual machines and applications to another region.

2. Azure Zone-redundancy

Many Azure regions provide availability zones. It is recommended to distribute your data and resources across multiple availability zones to protect your environment against zone-level failures, such as power outages, hardware faults, and network disruptions. Availability zones are physically separate locations within a region, that have independent power, cooling, and networking. Azure offers the following technologies to implement zone redundancy: 

  • Zone-redundant storage (ZRS) replicates your data synchronously across three zones;
  • Zone-redundant services replicate and operate services (such as virtual machines, load balancers, and SQL databases) across zones automatically.

3. Azure Backup service

Azure Backup allows you to create and restore backups of your data and resources, to protect your environment against accidental deletion, corruption, or malicious attacks. With Azure Backup you can configure backup policies, retention periods, encryption settings, and recovery points, and monitor your backup status and health. You can always restore your data to the original or an alternate location, or to another point in time.

4. Azure Recovery Services

This strategy involves creating and executing recovery plans for your data and resources, to ensure disaster recovery and business continuity. Azure Recovery Services is a suite of services that includes Azure Site Recovery, Azure Backup, and Azure Migrate, which help you replicate, failover, backup, restore, and migrate your workloads on Azure. You can use Azure Recovery Services to orchestrate and automate your recovery processes, test your recovery plans, and monitor your recovery health and readiness.

5. Infrastructure as Code

Infrastructure as Code (IaC) involves defining and managing your infrastructure and resources as code, using declarative and version-controlled templates. This enables faster, more consistent, and repeatable deployments and updates.

Azure offers tools and frameworks to support Infrastructure as Code, such as Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates, Azure Bicep, and Azure DevOps. You can use these tools to create, deploy, and update your infrastructure and resources on Azure, using a modular and scalable approach. You can also use Infrastructure as Code to deploy your infrastructure to different regions, environments, or subscriptions, as part of your availability and disaster recovery strategy.

Uptime strategies and SLAs

The availability of your data and resources on Azure depends largely on how you configure your infrastructure and implement the technologies we mentioned in this article. You can choose from various options to meet your availability and disaster recovery requirements, but you also need to consider the costs and trade-offs involved. You should design your infrastructure with your service level agreements (SLAs) in mind, and ensure that you can deliver the expected level of performance and reliability to your end customers.

Marc Bosgoed

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