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The Microsoft Azure Well-Architected Framework

Review this framework for workload guidance across five pillars: cost optimization, security, reliability, performance efficiency, and operational excellence.

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The Cloud Adoption Security Review provides you and your customers with actionable recommendations to improve security.

Strengthen security with the Cloud Adoption Security Review

The Cloud Adoption Security Review provides you and your customers with actionable recommendations to improve security.
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Build workloads with confidence using proven best practices.
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Design workloads that deliver results with actionable, simple-to-use technical resources.

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Know where you should focus to optimize workloads.

Discover the Azure Well-Architected Framework

Review Azure Well-Architected Framework documentation, including how-to guides and reference materials.
Assess workload architecture across the five pillars with the Azure Well-Architected Review.
Learn how to build great solutions with the Azure Well-Architected Framework.

Cost optimization

Manage and optimize cloud costs

Monitor and analyze your Azure bill. Set budgets, allocate spending for teams and projects, and forecast costs for future investments.

Cost optimize Azure workloads with best practices for Azure resource management and workload design and architecture. Save with Azure offers and licensing terms. 

Put cost controls and guardrails in place in your Azure environment to allow teams to go fast while complying with your spending policies and objectives. 

Learn more about cost optimization on Azure.


Build and operate mission-critical systems

Define availability and recovery requirements based on decomposed workloads and business needs.

Use architectural best practices to identify possible failure points in proposed or existing architecture and determine how the application will respond to failure.

Test with simulations and forced failovers to test both detection and recovery from various failures.

Deploy the application consistently using reliable and repeatable processes.

Monitor application health to detect failures, monitor indicators of potential failures, and gauge the health of your applications.

Finally, respond to failures and disasters by determining how best to address them based on established strategies.


Help customers manage secured workloads

Learn how customers can obtain comprehensive tools, training, and guidance to detect, respond to, and protect against security threats across Azure environments. 

Security is a core tenet of our trusted cloud commitments. We know customer trust is earned and must be maintained across these areas—not just by saying the right thing, but by doing the right thing. Protect your customers and organization with multilayered security across datacenters, infrastructure, and operations. Azure is the cloud to trust, backed by an investment of more than USD1 billion in research and development and 3,500 security experts.  

Secured workloads require more than a secure foundation—they are only as secure as their weakest link. Customers need to consider workload security as much as platform security when designing and managing workloads on Azure.

Performance efficiency

Prioritize scalability

Design architectures with performance and scalability, and provide an optimal and cost-effective experience for customers. Architectures should match resource capacity to demand for performance and scalability, adjusting to ongoing changes in demand for services. 

Performance efficiency matches application resource capacity to demand—scaling resources, identifying bottlenecks, and optimizing application code for peak performance. 

Enhance the scalability and performance of your application by:

  • Scaling up (adding more resources to an instance) and scaling out (adding more instances to a service).
  • Optimizing network performance.
  • Optimizing storage performance.
  • Identifying performance bottlenecks in applications.

Operations excellence

Run your applications effectively

Implement modern development practices like DevOps, and enable faster development and deployment cycles. Detect failures and problems, minimize customer impact by deploying automation to remove variance and error, and increase operational agility. 

Ensure full visibility into applications and maintain the best user experience for customers. Improve development practices and streamline release management so your business can quickly adjust to changes. By optimizing operational capabilities, you can accelerate development and release cycles while creating an improved experience for users. 

Drive excellence in architectures by:

  • Designing and building with modern practices.
  • Monitoring and analyzing to gain operational insights.
  • Using automation to reduce effort and error.
  • Testing your application throughout deployment and ongoing operations.

Explore the Azure Well-Architected video series

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Introduction: Architect successful workloads on Azure

David Stanford joins David Blank-Edelman to talk about architecting successful workloads on Azure using the Well-Architected Framework.
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Cost optimization: Start optimizing your Azure costs

Dante Rasera joins David Blank-Edelman to discuss cost visibility and awareness, eliminating cloud waste, and modernizing architecture.
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Reliability: Improve your Azure workloads’ reliability

David Steele joins David Blank-Edelman to discuss how to start improving the reliability of Azure workloads.


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