Manage retention policy with Video Analyzer


We’re retiring the Azure Video Analyzer preview service, you're advised to transition your applications off of Video Analyzer by 01 December 2022.

Azure Video Analyzer for Media is not affected by this retirement. It is now rebranded to Azure Video Indexer. Click here to read more.

Action Required: To minimize disruption to your workloads, transition your application from Video Analyzer per suggestions described in this guide before December 01, 2022. After December 1, 2022 your Azure Video Analyzer account will no longer function. Starting May 2, 2022 you will not be able to create new Video Analyzer accounts.

You can use Azure Video Analyzer to archive content for long durations of time, spanning from few seconds to years’ worth of video content from a single source. You can explicitly control the retention policy of your content, which ensures that older content gets periodically trimmed. You can apply different policies to different archives - for example, you can retain the most recent 3 days of recordings from a parking lot camera, and the most recent 30 days of recordings from the camera behind the cashier's desk.

Retention period

For each video resource in your Video Analyzer account, you can optionally apply a retention policy. When you specify a retention period (as described below), the service periodically trims content that is older than that period. If you don't specify a policy, content is stored indefinitely.

The retention period is typically set in the properties of a video sink node when creating a pipeline topology. You will find the retentionPeriod property in the videoCreationProperties section. As the name suggests, the property is used when a live pipeline is activated using this topology, and a new video resource is created. These creation properties are not used if the video resource already exists (such as when a pipeline is reactivated). Below is an example of how a 3-day retention policy could be applied to all parking lot cameras.

  "@type": "#Microsoft.VideoAnalyzer.VideoSink",
  "name": "{nodeName}",         
  "videoName": "{nameForVideoResource}",
    "title": "{titleForVideo}",
    "description": "{descriptionForVideo}",
    "segmentLength": "PT30S",
    "retentionPeriod": "P3D"

You can also set or update the retentionPeriod property of a video resource, using Azure portal, or via the REST API. Below is an example of setting a 3-day retention policy.

   "retentionPeriod": "P3D",

Rules and limitations

  • Retention policy may take up to 24 hours to go into effect
  • Format: retentionPeriod property takes ISO 8601 duration value, which must be in multiple of days. Example acceptable values: P1D, P20D, P1M, P365D, P1Y, P5Y
    • Minimum value is P1D, and maximum is P5Y
    • When set to null, the retention policy is cleared, and the video content is stored indefinitely
  • When retention policy is used, you will incur additional Azure storage transaction costs as the service locates and deletes blobs

Next steps

Recorded and live videos