Azure SQL Database automatic tuning benefits revealed

Last year, Microsoft unveiled a new automatic tuning feature for the Azure SQL Database. The feature utilizes artificial intelligence to continuously monitor database workload patterns and recognize opportunities to improve database performance.

Microsoft recently shared some examples of how Azure SQL Database customers have benefited from the feature. Here are some specific examples:

Tailored indexes for 28k databases

SnelStart, a company from the Netherlands that provides invoice and bookkeeping applications for small and medium-sized businesses, uses Azure and Azure SQL Database to run its Software as a Service. The company has leveraged the Azure SQL Database platform to improve performance and reduce DevOps cost.

The automatic tuning function has helped the business to manage its 28,000 databases. Before the function was available, the company had to manage each database for every business administration, all with different queries and scenarios. This often led to over-indexing. But automatic tuning simplified the process and allows the company to tune each database to its own individual specifications.

Managed index cleanup

AIMS360, a cloud-based service provider for fashion businesses, had thousands of databases, one for each of the business’s clients. The schema for each database started identical, but evolved over time. That meant that with every duplication and update, more work was needed to optimize all of those databases.

But with automatic tuning, the company was able to eliminate over-indexing and drop duplicated indexes. Since enabling the automatic tuning function, the SQL Database has executed more than 3,000 tuning actions on more than 1,400 databases automatically.

Reduced resource usage for applications

Microsoft IT uses Azure SQL Database heavily for thousands of its applications. All of those applications support different internal functions at Microsoft, meaning there are diverse workloads and thousands of databases.

Since automatic tuning was released in preview, Microsoft has rolled it out across different groups within Microsoft IT over time. Enabling the function has allowed the company to optimize tuning, saving tons of work hours and improving performance across a wide range of departments.


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