Data Center

  • Physical facility
  • Hosting for group of networked servers
  • Own power, cooling & networking infrastructure


  • Geographical area on the planet
  • One but usually more datacenters connected with low-latency network (<2 milliseconds)
  • Location for your services
  • Some services are available only in certain regions
  • Some services are global services, as such are not assigned/deployed in specific region
  • Globally available with 50+ regions
  • Special government regions (US DoD Central, US Gov Virginia, etc.)
  • Special partnered regions (China East, China North)

Availability Zone

  • Regional feature
  • Grouping of physically separate facilities
  • Designed to protect from data center failures
  • If zone goes down others continue working
  • Two service categories
    • Zonal services (Virtual Machines, Disks, etc.)
    • Zone-redundant services (SQL, Storage, etc.)
  • Not all regions are supported
  • Supported region has three or more zones
  • A zone is one or more data centers

Region Pair

  • Each region is paired with another region making it a region pair
  • Region pairs are static and cannot be chosen
  • Each pair resides within the same geography*
    • Exception is Brazil South
  • Physical isolation with at least 300 miles distance (when possible)
  • Some services have platform-provided replication
  • Planned updates across the pairs
  • Data residency maintained for disaster recovery
Region Pair A Region Pair B
East US West US
UK West UK South
North Europe (Ireland) West Europe (Netherlands)
East Asia (Hong Kong) Southeast Asia (Singapore)


  • Discrete market
  • Typically contains two or more regions
  • Ensures data residency, sovereignty, resiliency, and compliance requirements are met
  • Fault tolerant to protect from region wide failures
  • Broken up into areas
    • Americas,
    • Europe,
    • Asia Pacific,
    • Middle East and Africa
  • Each region belongs only to one Geography
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Adam Marczak

Programmer, architect, trainer, blogger, evangelist are just a few of my titles. What I really am, is a passionate technology enthusiast. I take great pleasure in learning new technologies and finding ways in which this can aid people every day. My latest passion is running an Azure 4 Everyone YouTube channel, where I show that Azure really is for everyone!

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