Microsoft has launched Availability Zones in its Norway East Azure Cloud region in Oslo, but seems to have cancelled a region in Stavanger, to the West.

Microsoft first announced plans to to open two Norwegian Azure Cloud regions in 2018; with one planned in Oslo and another in Stavanger.

Most Cloud regions for the likes of Microsoft, AWS, and Google Cloud launch with three Availability Zones – geographically separated data centers linked for low latency – to provide redundancy and resilience in the event of failures at one facility.

The company said both its Norway regions opened in 2019, but seemingly each had only one data center or zone, so redundancy was not available. Now. only the East region in Oslo is currently listed as available on the company’s site. The Stavanger region was seemingly removed in March; DCD has reached out to Microsoft for clarification.

Oslo now has three Availability Zones open to the general market. Microsoft said the AZs had been in operation since mid-summer for test users, but are now ready to launch more widely.

“We have seen a massive growth in cloud adoption since we opened our data centers in Norway nearly two years ago. With the buildout of Availability Zones, we are enabling customers to bring even more workloads to the Microsoft Cloud, and ensuring we are ready to serve a market growth that is only accelerating,” said Christopher Frenning, data center lead in Microsoft Norway.

"We're optimistic and excited to see the impact these Availability Zones will have on customers, their digital transformations, and ultimately their success.”

Neither AWS or Google have a dedicated cloud region in Norway; AWS has an Edge location in Oslo.

Update: Microsoft has told DCD the Norway West region is a 'secondary reserved access region' optimized for disaster recovery.'

"Norway East is our primary datacenter region in Norway and offers the most capabilities and services, including Availability Zones," the company said.

"Norway West is our secondary region optimized for disaster recovery that can support scenarios such as helping meet data residency requirements or specific risk & regulatory compliance needs for geographic isolation. Customers can request access to these reserved access regions by following these steps: Azure region access request process - Azure | Microsoft Docs."

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