Monitoring and maintaining Azure SQL

Last updated Friday, February 3, 2017 in Sitecore Experience Platform for Administrator, Developer
Keywords: Azure, Cloud

The default database engine for Sitecore on the Microsoft Azure® App Service is Microsoft Azure SQL®. It is where Sitecore stores all of its databases. This topic describes how you can:

Keep costs low

By default, all Sitecore databases use the Single Database model instead of the Elastic Database model. This is because Sitecore uses only four databases that by default each have varying performance requirements, which means that an Elastic Database model would be more expensive.

However, if you add more databases through additional Sitecore modules, or your own custom databases, you should reassess whether the Single or the Elastic model is more suitable for your requirements. For more information about SQL database options and performance, refer to the Azure SQL SKUs and prices and understand what is available in each service tier.

Ensure your databases are secure

Securing your databases is one of the most important tasks. With Microsoft Azure SQ, there are several ways to ensure your databases are secure. The Microsoft Azure SQL site describes how you can:


When you set up Sitecore, to ensure that Sitecore can communicate with the databases, Sitecore creates both an SQL admin user and a number of role-specific non-admin user accounts. You must reserve the admin user profile for administrative tasks only and never for a runtime site. You can find full details on best practices for user profiles and roles on the Microsoft Azure SQL site.

Back up and restore databases

The Azure SQL service automatically creates database backups at no additional charge and uses the Azure read-access geo-redundant storage (RA-GRS) to provide geo-redundancy. You do not need to do anything to make Azure SQL automatically back up your databases. However, if you want to keep backups in your own storage container, you can configure a long-term backup retention policy. The Microsoft Azure SQL site describes how to back up your databases and how to:

Optimize performance

Azure SQL provides several ways for you to monitor your databases for issues, as well as look for ways to improve performance. You can create alerts using Microsoft Azure Monitor with metrics such as DTU, Database size percentage, and Deadlocks. You can also help improve your performance by using tools such as Query Performance Insight or SQL Database Advisor. You can get more from these features if you:

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