Share via

Azure SQL Database Service Tiers (Editions)


This topic has moved to the Azure documentation site: Service Tiers.

Use Microsoft Azure SQL Database service tiers (editions) to dial-in cloud database performance and capabilities to suit your application. For more about the pricing of different service tiers, see SQL Database Pricing Details.

To use Azure SQL Database, you first need an Azure account. To get an account, sign up for a free trial.

Since Web and Business service tiers (editions) are being retired September 2015, consider using Basic, Standard, or Premium for newly created databases. For more information, see Web and Business Edition Sunset FAQ. For detailed information on upgrading existing Web or Business databases to the new service tiers, see Upgrade SQL Database Web/Business Databases to New Service Tiers.

Understand the Capabilities of Service Tiers (Editions)

Basic, Standard, Premium service tiers offer predictable performance, flexible business continuity options, and streamlined billing. In addition, with multiple performance levels, you can have the flexibility to choose the level that best meet your workload demands.

Should your workload increase or decrease, you can easily change the performance characteristics of a database in the Microsoft Azure Management Portal. Select your database, click Scale, and then choose a new service tier. For more information, see Changing Database Service Tiers and Performance Levels.

The features available with each service tier fall into the following categories:

  • Performance and Scalability: Basic, Standard, and Premium service tiers have one or more performance levels that offer predictable performance. Performance levels are expressed in database throughput units (DTUs), which provide a quick way to compare the relative performance of a database. For more detailed information about performance levels and DTUs, see Azure SQL Database Service Tiers and Performance Levels. In addition to the performance level, for all database service tiers, you also pick a maximum database size supported by the service tier. For more information on the supported database sizes, see CREATE DATABASE.

  • Business Continuity: These features help you recover your database from human and application errors, or datacenter failures. Many built-in features, such as Geo-Restore, are available with Basic, Standard, and Premium service tiers. For more information, see Azure SQL Database Business Continuity.

  • Auditing: With Basic, Standard, and Premium service tiers, you can track logs and events that occur in a database. For more information, see Azure SQL Database Performance Guidance.

Service Tier

Common App Pattern

Transactional Perf. Objective


Small databases with a single operation at a given point in time

Reliability per hour


Workgroup and cloud applications with multiple concurrent transactions

Reliability per minute


Mission-critical, high transactional volume with many concurrent users

Reliability per second


Web apps, workgroup, dept. apps, and other lightweight database workloads



Lightweight database workloads that require larger sizes than supported with Web


See Also

Other Resources

Azure SQL Database documentation