One of interesting new features is integration of previously called AppFabric cache. Now you can use cache (as before) but with difference that new cloud cache supports all features provided by Windows Server AppFabric. Remember, previously Windows Azure Cache has supported limited number of features. Now it is everything in there like including regions, high availability, notifications and local cache. Following picture shows distributed cache which can be consumed by multiple roles.
Interestingly, new version of Windows Azure supports no so called co-located cache approach. That means you can allocate a percentage of RAM in your role which will to used by the cache only. In this approach the cache joins the memory automatically into one large distributed cache. Any data put into the cache by one role instance can be accessed by other role instances in your application. It is surprising that the “co-located” cache approach is free of charge. (In other words: “you don’t have to pay anything to use it”). This is interesting scenario when for example your VM do not uses all available memory (RAM), which can be used now by cache.
All this be configured in the new tab (see on bottom left). Last but not least it is protocol compatible with memcached http://memcached.org/.
Scott Gu has published a short-summary of just a few of features in the current release of Windows Azure:
Jun 07 2012, 09:40 PM