Tutorial: Utilize the Azure Resource Manager template reference

Learn how to find the template schema information, and use the information to create Azure Resource Manager templates.

In this tutorial, you use a base template from Azure Quickstart templates. Using template reference documentation, you customize the template to create an encrypted Storage account.

Resource Manager template reference deploy encrypted storage account

This tutorial covers the following tasks:

  • Open a Quickstart template
  • Understand the template
  • Find the template reference
  • Edit the template
  • Deploy the template

If you don't have an Azure subscription, create a free account before you begin.


To complete this article, you need:

Open a Quickstart template

Azure QuickStart Templates is a repository for Resource Manager templates. Instead of creating a template from scratch, you can find a sample template and customize it. The template used in this quickstart is called Create a standard storage account. The template defines an Azure Storage account resource.

  1. From Visual Studio Code, select File>Open File.

  2. In File name, paste the following URL:

  3. Select Open to open the file.

  4. Select File>Save As to save the file as azuredeploy.json to your local computer.

Understand the schema

  1. From VS Code, collapse the template to the root level. You have the simplest structure with the following elements:

    Resource Manager template simplest structure

    • $schema: specify the location of the JSON schema file that describes the version of the template language.
    • contentVersion: specify any value for this element to document significant changes in your template.
    • parameters: specify the values that are provided when deployment is executed to customize resource deployment.
    • variables: specify the values that are used as JSON fragments in the template to simplify template language expressions.
    • resources: specify the resource types that are deployed or updated in a resource group.
    • outputs: specify the values that are returned after deployment.
  2. Expand resources. There is a Microsoft.Storage/storageAccounts resource defined. The template creates a non-encrypted Storage account.

    Resource Manager template storage account definition

Find the template reference

  1. Browse to Azure Template reference.

  2. In the Filter by title box, enter storage accounts.

  3. Select Reference/Template reference/Storage/<Version>/Storage Accounts as shown in the following screenshot:

    Resource Manager template reference storage account

    If you don't know which version to choose, use the latest version.

  4. Find the encryption-related definition information.

    "encryption": {
      "services": {
        "blob": {
          "enabled": boolean
        "file": {
          "enabled": boolean
      "keySource": "string",
      "keyvaultproperties": {
        "keyname": "string",
        "keyversion": "string",
        "keyvaulturi": "string"

    On the same web page, the following description confirms the encryption object is used to create an encrypted storage account.

    Resource Manager template reference storage account encryption

    And there are two ways for managing the encryption key. You can use Microsoft-managed encryption keys with Storage Service Encryption, or you can use your own encryption keys. To keep this tutorial simple, you use the Microsoft.Storage option, so you don't have to create an Azure Key Vault.

    Resource Manager template reference storage account encryption object

    Your encryption object shall look like:

    "encryption": {
        "services": {
            "blob": {
                "enabled": true
            "file": {
              "enabled": true
        "keySource": "Microsoft.Storage"

Edit the template

From Visual Studio Code, modify the template so that the resources element looks like:

Resource Manager template encrypted storage account resources

Deploy the template

Refer to the Deploy the template section in the Visual Studio Code quickstart for the deployment procedure.

The following screenshot shows the CLI command for listing the newly created storage account, which indicates encryption has been enabled for the blob storage.

Azure Resource Manager encrypted storage account

Clean up resources

When the Azure resources are no longer needed, clean up the resources you deployed by deleting the resource group.

  1. From the Azure portal, select Resource group from the left menu.
  2. Enter the resource group name in the Filter by name field.
  3. Select the resource group name. You shall see a total of six resources in the resource group.
  4. Select Delete resource group from the top menu.

Next steps

In this tutorial, you learned how to use template reference to customize an existing template. To learn how to create multiple storage account instances, see: