License-free standby replica for Azure SQL database

Posted by

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Community Hub.

To protect database powering the application from region failures and achieving higher business continuity it is crucial to enable disaster recovery for database. In some industries it is mandatory and part of compliance requirement to have disaster recovery in place and frequently conduct drills. One of the biggest hindrances in enabling disaster recovery has been cost as secondary database is mainly used in the event of a disaster.


We are excited to announce public preview of license-free standby replica for Azure SQL Database letting you to save on licensing costs by designating your secondary disaster recovery database as standby replica. Typically license costs constitute to be about 40% and so with license-free standby replica the secondary will be about 40% less expensive. To estimate cost for the Azure SQL Database standby replica using Azure pricing calculator set the SQL License to Azure Hybrid Benefit. 


When a secondary database replica is used only for disaster recovery, and doesn't have any workloads running on it, or applications connecting to it, you can save on licensing costs by designating the database as a standby replica. Microsoft provides you with the number of vCores licensed to the primary database at no extra charge under the failover rights benefit in the product licensing terms for standby replica. You're still billed for the compute and storage that the secondary database uses.


The standby database replica must only be used for disaster recovery. No production applications can be connected to the replica. The following lists the only activities that are permitted on the standby database:

  • Perform maintenance operations, such as checkDB
  • Connect monitoring applications
  • Run disaster recovery drills

You can designate one secondary single database deployment model as license-free standby replica in General Purpose & Business Critical service tier and provisioned compute tier. It is possible to configure license-free standby replica using portal, powershell or CLI.


For comprehensive details on license-free standby replica including limitations and frequently asked questions, please refer to documentation




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.