SQL Server on Amazon RDS

Amazon RDS is managed database service it makes it easy to provision and run relational databases in the cloud. It supports several relational engines starting with Aurora which has the Postgres and open source engines Maria DB and MySQL.

Why do you want a managed relational database service?

RDS takes care of a bunch of things that normally you would be doing yourselves on-premises. Starting from provisioning database from data center locations to power supplies to racks and servers and hypervisors and guest operating systems and database software – it’s all provisioned for you.

Amazon RDS manages the following areas:

  • Provisioning
  • Installation and patching
  • Automated Backups
  • Restores: Snapshot and point-in-time
  • High availability
  • Monitoring

With any software, you also have patching that comes along and so Amazon takes care of that.

It’s very easy to do database activities like database backups, log backups in RDS that either can be automated in just a few clicks.

Also, Amazon takes care of making sure the databases are highly available, there’s also the ability to monitor the databases and take appropriate recovery actions.

On Amazon RDS these areas can be configured:

  • Instance type/Class
  • Engine version/Edition
  • Storage
  • Network Connectivity
  • Time Zone
  • Backup Retention
  • Encryption
  • High Availability
  • Monitoring

For instance, Amazon supports multiple instance types so if you run just a more generic workload there are the M-series. If it’s a workload that needs more memory – there are other choices. In each type there are different classes, starting from the large to the extra-large, going up with sixteen extra-large.

When there is a need for scaling – you can get more CPUs, more memory, more network, more storage throughput. At a time of writing, Amazon supports MS SQL Server from 2008 to 2017 Enterprise, Standard, Web and Express editions.

It’s possible to choose which clients have Network accessibility to your database, what port do you want to dedicate to your database on some applications. You can have backups, set how long do you want to retain those backups. Also, there’s a possibility to encrypt your data. If it is a production workload you can enable high availability for that instance and also choose different levels of monitoring.

Now that you already know about the service, in the next post, I will talk about the best practices related to availability. See you later!

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