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About Azure Shared Caching

Updated: June 19, 2014

Please note the Azure Shared Caching service will be retired on September 1, 2014 and with it the Azure Silverlight-based portal. Once the Shared Caching service is retired, all remaining Shared Cache deployments will be deleted. Microsoft strongly encourages you to migrate at the earliest opportunity all existing Shared caches to either the Managed Cache Service (currently in GA) or to the new Azure Redis Cache (currently in Preview). For migration guidance, including guidance for migrating without making code changes, see Migrate from Shared Caching. For more information about the current Azure Cache offerings, see Azure Cache.

Microsoft Azure Shared Caching enables you to easily provision a cache in the cloud, to be used from any applications or services that could benefit from caching. To provision a cache, you sign up for one of the Shared Caching offerings on the . Each offering is differentiated by the amount of memory available for caching. The offerings start at 128 MB and increase in increments up to 4 GB. However, as a multitenant service, Shared Caching also has quotas for other network resources. These quotas also vary with each Shared Caching offering.

Shared Caching is one of two options for using caching in a cloud service. The other option is to host caching within your own web or worker roles. For information, see Cache.

Microsoft Azure Cache features are a subset of the features provided by the on-premise caching solution of Microsoft AppFabric 1.1 for Windows Server. For more information, see Differences Between Caching On-Premises and in the Cloud.

Microsoft Azure Cache is designed to be used with applications hosted in the cloud. This achieves the best throughput at the lowest latency. It is possible to test on-premises code that accesses a Microsoft Azure cache, but this design is not supported for production or valid for stress testing. On-premises applications can instead rely on an on-premises cache cluster that uses Microsoft AppFabric 1.1 for Windows Server.

Shared Caching Quick Start

The following list describes the steps to quickly begin learning and using Shared Caching with your applications.

  1. If you do not have a account, you can sign up at the Azure Management Portal.

  2. Then you can create your first cache.

  3. You can learn more about developing your own application that use the caching API directly and that use the ASP.NET session state and output caching providers.

  4. If you are familiar with on-premises caching with Microsoft AppFabric 1.1 for Windows Server, there are important feature differences and API differences that you should review.

  5. Learn how to deploy your cache-enabled application to the cloud.

  6. Finally, review information about managing your caches, which includes understanding cache quotas.

For more information about how to plan for caching requirements and quotas, see Capacity Planning for Caching in Azure.

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