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Big Data Dictionary

Windows Azure Table and Blob Storages

The Windows Azure Table storage service is designed to store large amounts of structured data.

As shown in the above figire, in Azure table service, a table is represented as a collection of entities that does not enforce a schema on entities. Therefore, a single table can contain entities that have di erent sets of properties. An account can contain many tables, the size of which is only limited by the 100TB storage account limit. An entity is represented as a set of properties (similar to a database row) where an entity can be up to 1MB in size. A property is a name-value pair. Each entity can include up to 252 properties to store data. Each entity also has 3 system properties that specify a partition key, a row key, and a timestamp. Entities with the same partition key can be queried more quickly, and inserted/updated in atomic operations. An entity's row key is its unique identi er within a partition.

Windows Azure Blob storage is another Microsoft service for storing large amounts of unstructured data that can be accessed from anywhere in the world via HTTP or HTTPS. A single blob can be hundreds of gigabytes in size, and a single storage account can contain up to 100TB of blobs. Common uses of Blob storage include: Common uses of Blob storage include: ˆ serving images or documents directly to a browser, streaming video and audio and performing secure backup and disaster recovery. The below figure shows the storage mechanism of blob objects in the Azure blob storage service.

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