Watch your Azure Account

By James at April 29, 2010 03:57
Filed Under: Microsoft, Life in General, MVP

The other night, Carmina and I were at our computers taking care of business and stuff, when the following conversation took place.

Carmina: “James, what did you buy from Microsoft today?”

Me: “Um, nothing”

Carmina: “Microsoft just withdrew $315 from our checking account”

The transaction had a phone number so I called the next day. It was for my Azure account I had setup to play around with and do presentations on. When I started the account, I was asked to enter a credit card number as proof of identification, and since I have a MSDN account with my MVP, and that gives me 750 compute hours a month, I thought I was good.

Last month I received a notice from Microsoft Online Services that there had been a problem with my credit card. Wondering what that was all about, since I hadn’t been using the services I logged into the site to see what was going on. This is what I saw…

image  and I clicked on Subscriptions

image

then Actions, which had the following options, “View subscription details, Edit service details, Opt in to auto renew, and Edit billing information”. No where did I see anything to check on activity.

Back to the phone call. I was told in addition to Compute Hours there are also Upload charges and Storage charges, and even if an application is suspended on Azure, i.e. not active, it is still accruing storage charges. In addition, SQL Azure charges of $10 per month, are not included in the 750 hours/month which comes with my MSDN subscription.

Windows Azure Compute charges: $0.12 per hour
Windows Azure Storage charges: $0.15 per hour Yes, $0.15 per hour just to store the files even if the app is not running.

The moral of the story. Azure is a great platform, and I recommend you dive in and get comfortable with it. BUT, remember to take down your apps when you are done testing. Don’t leave them up there.

Oh yeah. Also take the time to look a little further on the portal. I didn’t see the tiny text the other times I was one the site.

image

Time to get a second job,

James

Comments (1) -

5/4/2010 4:47:48 AM #

Mike

Yes you need to be careful with azure billing, remember which package you have, and make sure you never go over. Billing is expensive per CPU hour, and even though the app is suspended according to MSDN it still takes resources to run the app. For SQL Azure sign up for the Community Package it gets you access to SQL Azure (1 Database) and you can run commands till your hearts content. Obviously you can not use it in production scenarios, but its good for playing with the new features.

Mike | Reply

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About the author

James James is a five time and current Microsoft MVP in Client App Development, a Telerik Insider, a past Director on the INETA North America Board, a husband and dad, and has been developing software since the early days of Laser Discs and HyperCard stacks. As the Founder and President of the Inland Empire .NET User's Group, he has fondly watched it grow from a twice-a-month, early Saturday morning group of five in 2003, to a robust and rambunctious gathering of all types and sizes of .NET developers.

James loves to dig deep into the latest cutting edge technologies - sometimes with spectacular disasters - and spread the word about the latest and greatest bits, getting people excited about developing web sites and applications on the .NET platform, and using the best tools for the job. He tries to blog as often as he can, but usually gets distracted by EF, LINQ, MVC, ASP, SQL, XML, and most other types of acronyms. To keep calm James plays a mean Djembe and tries to practice his violin. You can follow him on twitter at @latringo.

And as usual, the comments, suggestions, writings and rants are my own, and really shouldn't reflect the opinions of my employer. That is, unless it really does.

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