Microsoft Azure Data Box – An Overview

What is Azure Data Box?

Microsoft Azure Data Box cloud solution is used for moving terabytes of data into Azure in a quick, inexpensive, and reliable way. The Azure Data Box family has products with different storage capacity to move your terabytes (TB) of data to Azure.

Moving your data to azure using data box is very secured, Microsoft will ship you a proprietary Data Box storage device to configure in your infrastructure for moving your terabytes of data to the device. Each storage device has a maximum usable storage capacity based on the solution you choose and is transported to your data center through a regional carrier. The device has a rugged casing to protect and secure data during transit.

Why use Azure Data Box?

Azure Data Box is mainly used to transfer larger data size and having limited network connectivity. You can use a data box for a one-time data movement, periodic, or an initial bulk data transfer followed by periodic transfers.

Below are the few scenarios where Azure Data Box can be used for data transfer.

One-time migration – It is used for moving a large amount of on-premises data to Azure

  • Moving a media library from offline tapes into Azure to create an online media library
  • Migrating your VM farm, SQL server, and applications to Azure
  • Moving historical data to Azure for in-depth analysis and reporting using HDInsight

Initial bulk transfer – This is for moving large data initially to azure using Data Box (seed) followed by incremental transfers over the network.

For example, Backup solution partners are using Data Box to move the initial large historical backup to Azure and after that, the incremental data is transferred via network to Azure storage.

Periodic uploads – This is used when a large amount of data is generated periodically and needs to be moved to Azure.

For example, in energy exploration, where video content is generated on oil rigs and windmill farms.

Types of Data Box

Azure data box solution is available with 3 options:

  • Data Box Disk
  • Data Box
  • Data Box Heavy

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