Compute services on Azure and AWS

Amazon EC2 Instances and Azure virtual machines

Although AWS instance types and Azure virtual machine sizes are categorized similarly, the RAM, CPU, and storage capabilities differ.

Similar to AWS' per second billing, Azure on-demand VMs are billed per second.

Amazon EBS and Azure Storage for VM disks

Durable data storage for Azure VMs is provided by data disks residing in blob storage. This is similar to how EC2 instances store disk volumes on Elastic Block Store (EBS). Azure temporary storage also provides VMs with the same low-latency temporary read-write storage as EC2 Instance Storage (also called ephemeral storage). Azure Files provides the VMs with the same functionality as Amazon EFS.

Higher performance disk I/O is supported using Azure premium storage. This is similar to the Provisioned IOPS storage options provided by AWS.

AWS Lambda, Azure Functions, Azure Web-Jobs, and Azure Logic Apps

Azure Functions is the primary equivalent of AWS Lambda in providing serverless, on-demand code. However, AWS Lambda functionality also overlaps with other Azure services:

  • WebJobs allow you to create scheduled or continuously running background tasks.

Autoscaling, Azure VM scaling, and Azure App Service Autoscale

Autoscaling in Azure is handled by two services:

  • Virtual machine scale sets allow you to deploy and manage an identical set of VMs. The number of instances can autoscale based on performance needs.

  • App Service Autoscale provides the capability to autoscale Azure App Service solutions.

Container Service

The Azure Kubernetes Service supports Docker containers managed through Kubernetes. See Container runtime configuration for specifics on the hosting environment.

Distributed Systems Platform

Service Fabric is a platform for developing and hosting scalable microservices-based solutions.

Batch Processing

Azure Batch allows you to manage compute-intensive work across a scalable collection of virtual machines.

Service Comparison

Virtual servers

AWS service Azure service Description
Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) Instances Virtual Machines Virtual servers allow users to deploy, manage, and maintain OS and server software. Instance types provide combinations of CPU/RAM. Users pay for what they use with the flexibility to change sizes.
Batch Batch Run large-scale parallel and high-performance computing applications efficiently in the cloud.
Auto Scaling Virtual Machine Scale Sets Allows you to automatically change the number of VM instances. You set defined metric and thresholds that determine if the platform adds or removes instances.
VMware Cloud on AWS Azure VMware Solution Seamlessly move VMware-based workloads from your datacenter to Azure and integrate your VMware environment with Azure. Keep managing your existing environments with the same VMware tools you already know while you modernize your applications with Azure native services. Azure VMware Solution is a Microsoft service, verified by VMware, that runs on Azure infrastructure.
Parallel Cluster CycleCloud Create, manage, operate, and optimize HPC and big compute clusters of any scale

Containers and container orchestrators

AWS service Azure service Description
Elastic Container Service (ECS)

Container Instances Azure Container Instances is the fastest and simplest way to run a container in Azure, without having to provision any virtual machines or adopt a higher-level orchestration service.
Elastic Container Registry Container Registry Allows customers to store Docker formatted images. Used to create all types of container deployments on Azure.
Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) Kubernetes Service (AKS) Deploy orchestrated containerized applications with Kubernetes. Simplify monitoring and cluster management through auto upgrades and a built-in operations console. See AKS solution journey.
App Mesh Service Fabric Mesh Fully managed service that enables developers to deploy microservices applications without managing virtual machines, storage, or networking.

Container architectures

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AWS service Azure service Description
Lambda Functions Integrate systems and run backend processes in response to events or schedules without provisioning or managing servers.

Serverless architectures

  • Social App for Mobile and Web with Authentication

    View a detailed, step-by-step diagram depicting the build process and implementation of the mobile client app architecture that offers social image sharing with a companion web app and authentication abilities, even while offline.

  • Cross Cloud Scaling Architecture

    Learn how to improve cross cloud scalability with solution architecture that includes Azure Stack. A step-by-step flowchart details instructions for implementation.

See also