SAS recently tested SAS 9.4 on MS Azure instances pointing to Azure NetApp Files (ANF) system (https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-netapp-files/azure-netapp-files-introduction). The results of the testing were favorable. SAS feels it is a good choice to use if the shared/clustered file system for SAS Grid will be used primarily for READs. This comment comes from the fact that ANF is an NFS-based file system, and SAS heavy large-block WRITE workloads generally do not perform acceptably over NFS connections.
Some additional tidbits to mention are:
Please ensure that the ANF storage resides within the same availability zone (AZ) as the instances using it within MS Azure. Not doing so can result in a significant decrease in READ performance.
At the time of the writing of this blog, there is no way for a customer to determine what MS Azure AZ the ANF storage is in without assistance from the ANF team. Please work with your Azure Specialist at Microsoft to ensure that your instances and ANF are in the same AZ.
SAS recommends the following NFS mount commands for NFS shared file systems being used for permanent SAS data files: