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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks


Common usage scenarios for Azure Functions

I often find info on Azure topics I need, tucked away in larger articles or books. As it gets difficult for me to fetch it the next time I need it, I like preserving (with attribution) the snippets & nuggets I find along the way  & adding my own annotations

Since long, I have been trying to compile notes on usage scenarios for the ever growing list of Azure services. I loved this list of use cases for Azure Functions with accompanying illustrations from the official Azure documentation -

1. Timer-based processing - Azure Functions supports an event based on a timer using CRON job syntax. For example, you could execute code that runs every 15 minutes and cleans up a database table based on custom business logic.

Azure Functions timer based processing







2. Azure service event processing - Azure Functions supports triggering an event based on an activity in an Azure service. For example, you could execute serverless code which reads newly discovered test log files in an Azure Blob Storage container and transforms this into a row in an Azure SQL Database table.
Azure Functions event processing

3. SaaS event processing - Azure Functions supports triggers based on activity in a SaaS service. For example, when a file is saved in OneDrive, this triggers a function that uses the Microsoft Graph API to modify the spreadsheet, creating additional charts and calculated data.
SaaS event processing and serverless code functions

4. Serverless web application architectures - Azure Functions can power a single page app. The app calls functions using the WebHook URL, saving user data and deciding what data to display. Or, you can do simple customisations, such as changing ad targeting by calling a function and passing it user profile information.
Serverless architecture in Azure Functions

5. Serverless mobile backends - A mobile backend can be just a set of HTTP APIs that are called from a mobile client using the WebHook URL. For example, a mobile application could capture an image, then call an Azure Function to get an access token for uploading to blob storage. A second Azure Function is triggered by the blob upload and resizes the image to be mobile-friendly.
Serverless architecture in Azure Functions

6. Real-time stream processing - For example, IoT devices send messages to Azure Stream Analytics, which then calls an Azure Function to transform the message. This function processes the data and creates a new record in an Azure SQL Database.
Real time stream processing

7. Real-time bot messaging - Azure Functions can be used to customise the behavior of a bot using a WebHook. For example, you can create an Azure Function that processes a message using Cortana Analytics and call this function using Bot Framework.
Real time bot messaging in Azure Functions
All images from official Azure documentation

Microsoft provides an easy way to try Azure Functions without the need for an Azure account or a credit card.

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