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SQL Server Speed Test: Azure Beats AWS

A comparison of SQL Server's throughput performance on Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) gives the edge to Microsoft's cloud.

"Azure emerged as the clear leader across both Windows and Linux for mission-critical workloads, up to 3.4 times faster and up to 87 percent less expensive than AWS EC2," said Microsoft in a blog post commenting on the research, performed by GigaOm and sponsored by Microsoft.

As the sponsor, Microsoft chose the competitors, the test and the configuration. The GigaOm Transactional Field Test that was used is a workload derived from the industry-standard TPC Benchmark E (TPC-E).

After conducting a number of tests, the GigaOm paper said:

Microsoft SQL Server on Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines (VM) indicated 3.4x better performance on Windows over Microsoft SQL Server on Amazon Web Services (AWS) Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2). Microsoft SQL Server on Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines had 3x better performance over AWS when tested on Linux Server OS. SQL Server on Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines (VM) had up to 86.8% better price-performance when comparing Azure Hybrid Benefit to AWS License Mobility for three-year compute commitment, and up to 32.2% better price-performance when comparing the high-speed disks of AWS io1 and Azure Ultra Disk.

In commenting on the tests, Microsoft said, "A key reason why Azure price-performance is superior to AWS is Azure BlobCache, which provides free reads. Given that most online transaction processing (OLTP) workloads today come with a ten-to-one read-to-write ratio, this provides customers with significant savings."

About the Author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.

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