Moving File Storage into Azure


  • Hello!

    We are looking to migrate among other things our File Servers to the cloud. Our requirements are the ability to use ACLs with domain user accounts along with a Previous Versions style system and DR/Backup solution depending on what file service is used. 

    We would also like to retain the use of network drives for easy navigation of files.

    Currently the only thing I can see that ticks these boxes is simply running up 2 files servers with DFSR, and previous versions.

    I am using a test of Azure files at the moment, that doesn't allow ACLs (yet). Assuming it arrives soon, whats the best way to cover the previous version style system and DR.

    How have others done this? I am sure I am not the first to try this.

    Zac Avramides

    Wednesday, April 5, 2017 10:55 AM

All replies

  • Worth mentioning, although Azure is preferred, very much open to other solutions if they tick the right boxes.

    Zac Avramides

    Wednesday, April 5, 2017 10:57 AM
  • As you mentioned, Azure files won't do what you want currently, it doesn't have the granular permissions you need.

    You are basically limited to using IaaS VMs. If you want HA your also then limited to using solutions that don't rely on shared storage (so standard Windows failover cluster is out)

    In my research it is really limited to:

    1. Use third party tools that can replicate a shared storage solution like SIOS Datakeeper
    2. Use Server 2016 with Storage Spaces Direct - Whether this is feasible will depend on your workload, it's designed for large long open files like SQL DB and VHD, not regular file serving
    3. Use Storage Replica to replicate data between two servers (this may be a better option than DFS)
    4. Use DFS Replication

    All of the above do work in Azure and there are plenty of guides documenting how to do it, but they all have some fairly significant limitations.

    Sam Cogan Microsoft Azure MVP
    Blog | Twitter

    • Proposed as answer by Md Shihab Saturday, April 15, 2017 6:31 PM
    Wednesday, April 5, 2017 11:54 AM