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We are very excited to announce a significant “refresh” to the current Azure SQL Database Elastic Jobs preview! This refresh brings several new capabilities that were highly requested by our customers during the current preview.
Main new capabilities added in this refresh include:
- Microsoft Entra ID (formerly Azure Active Directory) support
- Service-managed Private Link support to securely connect to target databases.
- Integration with Azure Alerts for job execution status
- Easily scale Job Agent’s tier to connect to more targets concurrently.
Azure portal has also been significantly enhanced to provide new experience and support these new capabilities.
These enhancements augment current capabilities of Elastic Jobs with full backward compatibility, making it easy for customers to automate and execute T-SQL jobs using PowerShell*, REST, or T-SQL APIs against a group of Azure SQL databases. These jobs can be used to handle a wide variety of tasks such as index rebuilding, schema updates, collection of query results for analytics, and performance monitoring. All current preview Elastic Job Agents and associated Job databases are also updated with these new capabilities and customers can start using them now!
* Updated PowerShell APIs are expected to be available later this month, in the second half of November 2023.
Watch this 6-minute video for a quick tour of these new capabilities of Elastic Jobs in this refresh.
Authenticate with Microsoft Entra ID
With the support for Microsoft Entra, now a user assigned managed identity (UMI), can be assigned to the Job Agent during creation or later through the Azure portal or APIs. While the existing method of SQL Authentication with database-scoped credentials continues to be supported, Microsoft Entra ID is the recommended and secure mechanism for Job Agent to connect to target databases.
Add Private Endpoints for connecting to target databases
The Elastic Jobs private endpoint is a secure way for a Job Agent to connect and establish a unique private link to a target SQL database server. The service-managed private links for elastic jobs are different from other private links and are easy to create in the Azure portal. Once a private link is established with a target server, all communication between that Job Agent and that target server/it’s databases will flow through this secure private link. Such private endpoints can be created to each target server of that Job Agent to establish unique private links between them for secure connection and job execution at those target databases. It is no longer necessary to enable Public access to the target logical server for the purpose of elastic job communications.
Get Alerted on Job execution status
Elastic Jobs now enables integration with Azure monitoring alerts to set up alert rules on Job execution status. Available signals for creating an Alert rule include count of Job executions failed, successful or timed out. For example, an Alert rule can be set up to fire when Failed Job execution count is more than zero. Alert actions can trigger notification by email, SMS, and push notifications or any other actions supported by Azure Monitor Alerts.
Scale your Job agent to connect to more targets concurrently
Elastic job agent now has four tiers of performance to allow for increasing capacity. Capacity increments indicate the total number of concurrent jobs that can be spawned off by the agent at the target databases. For a larger number of concurrent target connections, you can upgrade from the default limit of 100 concurrent job targets to 800 concurrent targets.
View and monitor your Jobs through enhanced Portal
Job Agent's portal page now allows you to view and monitor your Job definitions, job execution history, and target groups. These portal links can be navigated to start, enable or disable an existing job. The Azure portal pages allow you to view target groups, jobs, job steps, job execution status and associated T-SQL script.
The elastic job agent remains free during the current preview until General Availability (GA) time*. Starting at GA time, Job Agents will be billed based on its selected capacity tier of the Job Agent. Billing cards in the Azure portal during preview will show an estimate (in US dollars) of the expected cost after GA, this is for advanced cost estimation purposes only. The Azure SQL Database pricing page will also be updated at that time to show the Job Agent prices.
*GA is expected in Q1 of CY2024. Exact date will be determined later.
Please refer to the documentation for a list of known limitations.
The public preview for Elastic Jobs is available in all the regions that Azure SQL Database is available.