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Microsoft has announced new SQL Server 2016 and Microsoft Azure StorSimple cloud storage updates aimed at allowing more customers to use a hybrid cloud model for data storage and protection.

With the huge explosion of data in today’s world, Microsoft’s Mark Jewett says that a hybrid cloud approach can offer unique, custom ways to manage the proliferation of data:

“We believe you should be able to take advantage of the best of the public cloud and the best of your on-premises technology. Hybrid solutions should enable mission critical, recent, or latency-sensitive data to remain on-premises, while backups and archival data can seamlessly move to low cost and nearly-limitless cloud storage.”

The SQL Server 2016 Release Candidate offers new hybrid cloud enhancements, making it easier to shuttle data between on-premises and cloud storage. The SQL Server Stretch Database service, a companion to Azure, enables users to stretch warm and cold data to Azure for nearly limitless data storage — up to 60 terabytes per database in the cloud.

Data is encrypted before being sent to Azure, with the encryption key remaining on-premises for added security.

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SQL Server 2016 also offers support for Transactional Replication to Azure SQL Database, further increasing options for cloud backup in case of catastrophic system failure on-premises to ensure vital data survives. It also provides seamless data migration from Azure to the SQL Server on-premises without downtime.

StorSimple Virtual Array simplifies hybrid storage

The Azure StorSimple Virtual Array enhancement, a version of StorSimple in virtual machine form, expands the potential customer base for hybrid cloud use to customers with minimal IT infrastructure. It allows customers to archive older data on Azure while storing their most-used data on the virtual array.

“The virtual array is built on the success of existing StorSimple technology, which uses a hybrid cloud storage approach for on-demand capacity scaling in the cloud and cloud-based data protection and disaster recovery.”

The virtual array can be configured as a file server or an iSCSI internet-based server, and provides the ability to back up data to Azure.

SOURCE: Microsoft