SQL Azure PaaS – NSG Implications

With a large collection of traditional SQL servers, our business has started to look into the feasibility of moving our databases over to the Microsofts ‘SQL Azure’ service. The current databases are run on IaaS machines and have their own internal IP joined to our VNET’s. They have static IP’s so providing access to them from a machine protected by a NSG is as simply as adding a new rule:

Set-AzureNetworkSecurityRule -Action Allow -DestinationAddressPrefix -DestinationPortRange 1433 -Name “SQL_Database” -Priority 100 -Protocol TCP -SourceAddressPrefix -SourcePortRange * -Type Outbound

The PaaS SQL server is a different kettle of fish altogether. Their dynamic nature means they will not have a static IP address – If you download a list of the subnets here you will see that maintaining a list of accurate NSG’s rules would be an exercise in futility. As of writing, there are 216 subnets in the North Europe datacenter alone. These are likely to change fairly regularly as a datacenter grows in size.

I can see no other way of allowing access to these PaaS SQL instances other than adding a rule allowing access to all of the Internet.

Set-AzureNetworkSecurityRule -Action Allow -DestinationAddressPrefix INTERNET -DestinationPortRange 1433 -Name “SQL_PaaS_Database” -Priority 100 -Protocol TCP -SourceAddressPrefix -SourcePortRange * -Type Outbound

With free access to any INTERNET SQL server, shouldn’t these apps now all be in a DMZ?

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