Azure Essential

ARM or Azure Resource Manager quick view

Resource Manager request model


If you’re new to Azure Resource Manager, there are some terms you might not be familiar with.

  • resource – A manageable item that is available through Azure. Virtual machines, storage accounts, web apps, databases, and virtual networks are examples of resources.
  • resource group – A container that holds related resources for an Azure solution. The resource group includes those resources that you want to manage as a group. You decide which resources belong in a resource group based on what makes the most sense for your organization. See Resource groups.
  • resource provider – A service that supplies Azure resources. For example, a common resource provider is Microsoft. Compute, which supplies the virtual machine resource. Microsoft. Storage is another common resource provider. See Resource providers and types.
  • Resource Manager template – A JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) file that defines one or more resources to deploy to a resource group or subscription. The template can be used to deploy the resources consistently and repeatedly. See the Template deployment overview.
  • declarative syntax – Syntax that lets you state “Here is what I intend to create” without having to write the sequence of programming commands to create it. The Resource Manager template is an example of the declarative syntax. In the file, you define the properties for the infrastructure to deploy to Azure. See Template deployment overview.

hierarchy of Management Group, Subscription, and Resource group


Availability Zone

Availability zones expand the level of control you have to maintain the availability of the applications and data on your VMs. An Availability Zone is a physically separate zone, within an Azure region. There are three Availability Zones per supported Azure region.

Each Availability Zone has a distinct power source, network, and cooling. By architecting your solutions to use replicated VMs in zones, you can protect your apps and data from the loss of a datacenter. If one zone is compromised, then replicated apps and data are instantly available in another zone.

Availability zones

Fault Domain, Update Domain

A fault domain is a logical group of the underlying hardware that shares a common power source and network switch, similar to a rack within an on-premises datacenter.

Update domains

An update domain is a logical group of the underlying hardware that can undergo maintenance or be rebooted at the same time.

This approach ensures that at least one instance of your application always remains running as the Azure platform undergoes periodic maintenance. The order of update domains being rebooted may not proceed sequentially during maintenance, but only one update domain is rebooted at a time.

Availability sets

An availability set is a logical grouping of VMs within a datacenter that allows Azure to understand how your application is built to provide for redundancy and availability. We recommended that two or more VMs are created within an availability set to provide for a highly available application and to meet the 99.95% Azure SLA. There is no cost for the Availability Set itself, you only pay for each VM instance that you create. When a single VM is using Azure premium SSDs, the Azure SLA applies for unplanned maintenance events.

In an availability set, VMs are automatically distributed across these fault domains. This approach limits the impact of potential physical hardware failures, network outages, or power interruptions.

For VMs using Azure Managed Disks, VMs are aligned with managed disk fault domains when using a managed availability set. This alignment ensures that all the managed disks attached to a VM are within the same managed disk fault domain.

Only VMs with managed disks can be created in a managed availability set. The number of managed disk fault domains varies by region – either two or three managed disk fault domains per region. You can read more about these managed disk fault domains for Linux VMs or Windows VMs.

Managed availability set


VMs within an availability set are also automatically distributed across update domains.

Availability sets

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