The auto-failover groups feature for the Azure SQL database can be configured with an automatic failover policy. Azure triggers failover after the failure is detected and the grace period has expired. Grace period is determined by a setting called ‘GracePeriodWithDataLossHours’ that cannot be set under one hour. Why is it not allowed to set a time which is less than an hour? Can your business tolerate the application be down for that period? Should your turn off Auto Fail-over and set it to manual?
I noticed a lot of confusion around this setting, including my own. Some of the confusion is due to a lack of clarity in the documentation. I checked with the Microsoft Azure SQL team, and they are actively working on clarifying some of the questions I raised.
Read on for a Q&A style explanation of auto-failover and grace periods.