Introduction to Azure Storage Account
What is Azure Storage Account
Azure Storage Account is the base storage type within Azure. Azure Storage offers a very scalable object store for data objects and file system services in the cloud. It can also provide a messaging store for reliable messaging, or, it can act as a NoSQL store.
Azure Storage Account offers four configuration options, i.e., offers four different services -
A) Azure Blob - Azure Blob Storage Account is a scalable object store for storing massive amount of unstructured data of any type, like - text files, log files, documents, binary data, images, videos, virtual machine images, database backups etc.
Azure Blob Storage Account is cheap, but not fast enough to be used directly in Big Data Analysis scenarios.
B) Azure Files - Azure Files Storage Account is a fully managed file shares for storing varieties of files in the cloud that are accessible via the industry standard Server Message Block (SMB) protocol. Using Azure Files Storage Account, file shares can be mounted concurrently in the cloud, or, on-premises on Windows, Linux and MacOS.
C) Azure Queue - Azure Queue Storage Account is a messaging store that provides asynchronous message queueing for communication between application components, making application scalable and less sensitive to individual component failure.
D) Azure Table - Azure Table Storage Account is a NoSQL store that stores structured and non-relational NoSQL data in the cloud, providing a key/attribute store with a schema-less design.
Azure Table Storage Account can be used to store flexible datasets like - user data for web applications, address books, device information, or other types of metadata etc.
Attributes of Azure Storage Account
- Highly Available or Durable - Data in Azure Storage Account is stored redundantly. Hence the data is safe in the event of hardware failure within a Data Center. Data can also be replicated across Data Centers, or, geographic regions for disaster recovery.
- Secure - All Storage Accounts are encrypted using Storage Service Encryption (SSE) for data at REST.
Azure Storage Account can be configured in such a way that data can be accessible over HTTPS only, or, from a specific IP ranges, so that, the data can only be accessed from an enterprise network.
Azure Storage Account can also be configured in a way that it can only be accessed through a virtual network in the user’s Azure subscription.
- Cost Effective - Azure Storage Account is relatively inexpensive when compared to hosting and managing on-premise storage solution within an enterprise.
- Easily Accessible - Azure Storage Account provides a unique namespace for data stored in Azure Storage Account, that is accessible from anywhere in the world over HTTP, or, HTTPS.
Azure Storage Account Endpoints
Every Azure Storage Account, created in Azure, has a unique name. Azure Storage Account name must be between 3 and 24 characters in length and may contain numbers and lowercase only. Each object that is stored in an Azure Storage Account, has an address that includes that unique Account name. The combination of the unique Account name and Azure Storage Service endpoint forms the base address for the objects stored in the respective Azure Storage Account.
Example: if a general-purpose Storage Account is named “demostorageaccount”, then the default endpoints for that Azure Storage Account are -
A) Azure Blob - https://*demostorageaccount*.blob.core.windows.net
B) Azure Files - https://*demostorageaccount*.file.core.windows.net
C) Azure Queue - https://*demostorageaccount*.queue.core.windows.net
D) Azure Table - https://*demostorageaccount*.table.core.windows.net
The URL for accessing an object, stored in an Azure Storage Account is constructed by appending the object’s location in the Azure Storage Account to the endpoint. Example: An Azure Blob address might have the format -https://*demostorageaccount*.blob.core.windows.net/mycontainer/myblob.