Moving Data To and From the Cloud
This week, we will explore how to get large amounts of data in or out of Windows Azure Blob storage. Microsoft recently added Windows Azure Import/Export service that enables customers to use hard disks to move data in and out of Microsoft datacenters. Microsoft uses its high-speed secure network to transfer the data in or out of your storage account.
If you have a large amount of data to transfer to or from your Azure account, it is probably not practical to do so over an Internet connection. The amount of time it takes to transfer the data is often the prohibiting factor.
The Import/Export service could be used to transfer data into Windows Azure. Such would be the case for a data migration project or to transfer data out for onsite data recovery. Either way, there are not any data transfer charges between the device and Windows Azure storage as long as it is done in the same datacenter.
Prepare your 3.5” SATA storage device and encrypt it using Bitlocker. Next, ship the drive to the Microsoft data center. Microsoft will upload the data to your storage account and ship the drive back to you. If you are exporting the data, Microsoft will encrypt the data before sending it back to you.
This service is in preview in the US region only and pricing includes a 50% preview discount. Currently, there is a flat device handling fee of $40 per storage device. There are no data transfer charges and return shipping is free for addresses inside the US.
Detailed instructions on how to prepare your storage device and the process for importing or exporting data can be found here.
That wraps things up for this week. As always, check back for new Azure topics every week, and feel free to suggest a topic you would like to see.