AMD Boosts Microsoft Azure Data Explorer Performance


AMD scored another victory as Microsoft moved its updated Azure Data Explorer platform to EPYC 2-based virtual machines (VMs).

Microsoft’s AMD-based Dav4 VM family is now the default SKU for Azure Data Explorer clusters, while the Easv4 and Lsv2 instances — also AMD based — are aimed at customers that need high SSD performance or are working with storage-heavy workloads, respectively.

“These VM families represent unprecedented improvements in return on investment in cost and performance,” said Uri Barash, product manager for Azure Data Explorer, in a blog post.

According to Microsoft, AMD’s product will bolster CPU performance by more than 30%, and up to 50% in some workloads. Combined with a new Kusto analytics engine, the cloud provider claims a 30-fold improvement in operational efficiency.

Introduced in 2018, Azure Data Explorer is a big data analytics platform built around Microsoft’s Kusto Engine, first introduced internally in 2015. Not long after launching the offering, the cloud provider discovered two common scenarios for the service: interactive telemetry data lakes and analytics platforms built on the Data Explorer backend.

With these scenarios in mind, Microsoft rebuilt the engine in a bid to improve performance. Kusto EngineV3 included a complete “redesign of the data storage format, native code generation for portions of the query plan, and automatic selection of strategies based on data shard statistics,” Barash explained.

Alongside the new engine, which is now available in public preview, Azure is also adding streaming telemetry and key query language (KQL) support to their service.

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