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Everything You Need to Know About Azure Serverless Functions

The cloud has facilitated the emergence of serverless computing, or what is popularly known as the Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS). This service essentially allows us to deploy and store individual function codes on the cloud without using virtual machines.

As a cloud computing platform, Microsoft Azure is popular among users looking to build websites and mobile apps or to access the cloud database. Using serverless functions on MS Azure, organizations can easily deploy and host applications on the cloud platform.

Here is everything you need to know about serverless functions on MS Azure.

What Are Azure Serverless Functions?

Simply put, an Azure serverless function is a unit of work (or code) that runs on the Azure Cloud. Using Azure serverless functions, enterprises can easily build applications on the cloud using dedicated and on-demand resources.

As a cloud-powered PaaS platform, Azure can automatically add instances whenever there is an increase in application instances or incoming requests.

How do MS Azure serverless functions work? Using this cloud platform, users can build and deploy applications that execute a code whenever triggered by events or conditions. Some of these triggered events include:

  • Activation of web APIs
  • Any database changes
  • Processing of incoming data streams

Every cloud application must execute code in response to such events. Azure serverless functions enable this with its on-demand resource consumption. MS Azure utilizes functions (or blocks of written code) to design logic. Each of these functions responds differently to triggered events.

What are the advantages or benefits of using Azure serverless functions? Let’s discuss that next.

Advantages of Azure Serverless Functions

In the Azure serverless development environment, application developers can create more efficient applications that help organizations solve complex problems in cloud orchestration. Additionally, this cloud platform allows them to build applications using popular programming languages like C#, Java, PHP, and JavaScript.

Here are some of the other benefits of using Azure serverless:

  • Flexible automated scalability that eliminates you from the task of managing the infrastructure
  • Complete development toolkit with integrated tools and DevOps capabilities
  • Ability to deploy the same function code to multiple destinations, including Kubernetes cluster, Azure Stack, and IoT Edge devices
  • An integrated and efficient programming model that can seamlessly respond to events and connect to third-party services

The Azure-based serverless function also enables application decomposition (or smaller units), which is easier for fixing bugs or making changes. Besides, an event-driven system like Azure is more efficient than stream-based systems. In its event-driven architecture, units (or sub-components) of the deployed application are independent, with events triggering each other. Any application failure impacts only one event and not the entire log.

Next, let’s look at some of the features of the Azure serverless function that drive these advantages.

Features of Azure Serverless Functions

Here are some of the features of Azure Cloud Serverless functions:

·      Security

Azure’s serverless functions can secure any HTTP-triggered function using OAuth services such as MS Azure AD, Microsoft accounts, or third-party accounts such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google.

·      Application Insights

Application Insights is a built-in tool with MS Azure that serves as a cloud service for application performance management. Using this tool, users can monitor application performance, detect any anomalies, and diagnose the root cause of any issues.

·      Azure Function Triggers

The Azure serverless function is the best fit to work with IoT devices and build microservices. MS Azure supports triggers like HTTPTrigger, TimerTrigger, and BlobTrigger for executing the function code.

·      Azure Monitor

Azure Monitor is another built-in tool used to monitor various Azure services. This tool helps to improve the performance and availability of an application or service hosted on Azure Cloud. It offers multiple services like application insights, dashboards, and log analytics.

·      Support for NuGet and NPM

Azure serverless functions also allow downloading code dependencies from package referencing sources like NuGet and NPM. With this feature, developers can use built-in libraries (from these sources) required to execute application code.

Among other capabilities, Azure serverless functions enable code deployment and continuous integration on GitHub, Azure DevOps, and other development environments. The open-source Azure also follows a “Pay-per-use” pricing model customized according to the business requirements. 

Conclusion

Driven by on-demand computing requirements, Azure serverless functions are designed for running smaller applications with events. This is useful for automatic events like sending emails, processing customer orders, and scheduling a backup or database cleanup. MS Azure Serverless is the best fit for running code without having to host it on any server.

At zCon, we offer cost-effective and efficient customized solutions for the benefit of our customers. Our cloud-related services include enterprise cloud development that can reduce your time-to-market, optimize costs, and increase security. Here is a look at some of our business solutions using MS Azure.

If you are looking for a reliable Microsoft Cloud partner for your next Azure project, contact us today.

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