Microsoft has introduced Cool Blob Storage, what the company describes as a cost effective way of storing and managing data in the cloud.
Azure Cool Blob Storage helps enterprise users manage the growing costs of storing data in the cloud, which has become a hugely important storage method.
Redmond says a good way that helps keep storage costs in check is by placing data on a tier that is based off such attributes as retention period and frequency of access.
Cool data is one of these attributes and Cool Blob Storage is ideal for media content, backups, archival data, compliance, and backups.
Microsoft says that the Cool data attribute is good for data that is stored for a long time and is not accessed frequently, such as less than once a month. Azure Blob accounts will allow users to access both Hot and Cool tiers to store data, while the features of Cool Blob Storage are:
Cost effective: You can now store your less frequently accessed data in the Cool access tier at a low storage cost (as low as $0.01 per GB in some regions), and your more frequently accessed data in the Hot access tier at a lower access cost. For more details on regional pricing, see Azure Storage Pricing.
Compatibility: We have designed Blob storage accounts to be 100% API compatible with our existing Blob storage offering which allows you to make use of the new storage accounts in existing applications seamlessly.
Performance: Data in both access tiers have a similar performance profile in terms of latency and throughput.
Availability: The Hot access tier guarantees high availability of 99.9% while the Cool access tier offers a slightly lower availability of 99%. With the RA-GRS redundancy option, we provide a higher read SLA of 99.99% for the Hot access tier and 99.9% for the Cool access tier.
Durability: Both access tiers provide the same high durability that you have come to expect from Azure Storage and the same data replication options that you use today.
Scalability and Security: Blob storage accounts provide the same scalability and security features as our existing offering.
Global reach: Blob storage accounts are available for use starting today in most Azure regions with additional regions coming soon. You can find the updated list of available regions on the Azure Services by Regions page.
Cool Blob Storage is similar to services offered by Microsoft's cloud rivals, namely Amazon Glacier and Google's Nearline, which cost 1 cent per GB of storage on a per month basis. Microsoft's Cool solution will also be price pointed at 1 cent per GB of storage, although the cost does depend on region (image).