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Microsoft Build event announcements

Another Microsoft event and another bunch of exciting announcements.  At the Microsoft Build event this week, the major announcements in the data platform space were:

Multi-master at global scale with Azure Cosmos DB.  Perform writes on containers of data (for example, collections, graphs, tables) distributed anywhere in the world. You can update data in any region that is associated with your database account. These data updates can propagate asynchronously. In addition to providing fast access and write latency to your data, multi-master also provides a practical solution for failover and load-balancing issues.  More info

Azure Cosmos DB Provision throughput at the database level in preview.  Azure Cosmos DB customers with multiple collections can now provision throughput at a database level and share throughput across the database, making large collection databases cheaper to start and operate.  More info

Virtual network service endpoint for Azure Cosmos DB.  Generally available today, virtual network service endpoint (VNET) helps to ensure access to Azure Cosmos DB from the preferred virtual network subnet.  The feature will remove the manual change of IP and provide an easier way to manage access to Azure Cosmos DB endpoint.  More info

Azure Cognitive Search now in preview.  Cognitive Search, a new preview feature in the existing Azure Search service, includes an enrichment pipeline allowing customers to find rich structured information from documents.  That information can then become part of the Azure Search index.  Cognitive Search also integrates with Natural Language Processing capabilities and includes built-in enrichers called cognitive skills.  Built-in skills help to perform a variety of enrichment tasks, such as the extraction of entities from text or image analysis and OCR capabilities.  Cognitive Search is also extensible and can connect to your own custom-built skills.  More info

Azure SQL Database and Data Warehouse TDE with customer managed keys.  Now generally available, Azure SQL Database and Data Warehouse Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) offers Bring Your Own Key (BYOK) support with Azure Key Vault integration.  Azure Key Vault provides highly available and scalable secure storage for RSA cryptographic keys backed by FIPS 140-2 Level 2 validated Hardware Security Modules (HSMs).  Key Vault streamlines the key management process and enables customers to maintain full control of encryption keys and allows them to manage and audit key access.  This is one of the most frequently requested features by enterprise customers looking to protect sensitive data and meet regulatory or security compliance obligations.  More info

Azure Database Migration Service is now generally available.  This is a service that was designed to be a seamless, end-to-end solution for moving on-premises SQL Server, Oracle, and other relational databases to the cloud. The service will support migrations of homogeneous/heterogeneous source-target pairs, and the guided migration process will be easy to understand and implement.  More info

4 new features now available in Azure Stream Analytics: Public preview: Session window; Private preview: C# custom code support for Stream Analytics jobs on IoT Edge, Blob output partitioning by custom attribute, Updated Built-In ML models for Anomaly Detection.  More info

James Serra's Blog

James is a big data and data warehousing technology specialist at Microsoft. He is a thought leader in the use and application of Big Data technologies, including MPP solutions involving hybrid technologies of relational data, Hadoop, and private and public cloud. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 30 years of IT experience. James is a popular blogger (JamesSerra.com) and speaker, having presented at dozens of PASS events including the PASS Business Analytics conference and the PASS Summit. He is the author of the book “Reporting with Microsoft SQL Server 2012”. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

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