Response time difference between Windows Azure extra small and small instances

This was originally posted on my old blog.

When Foundbite was in its very early stages I was using the Windows Azure Extra Small instance to host the API and with a very small number of beta testers the response time was more than fine, though did fluctuate a lot.

As the beta expanded and because I get a free allowance for Windows Azure through BizSpark, I decided to move my web role up to a Small Instance. Unlike the Extra Small, the Small instance is not shared with others and I was curious to see the response time gains that could be had. Turns out, they are quite significant:

Although I realise this isn’t a completely fair test as the number of requests and type of requests vary, it’s quite apparent that the response time dropped significantly. I hadn’t expected such a clear distinction.

You can see the difference in size between instances here, I have no idea how much an A7 costs but wow that’s a lot of power!

If you need help choosing an instance size, this article is also really useful.

The above graph was made using New Relic Performance Monitoring which you can get for free using your Azure subscription.