Azure offers - free support upgrade, hybrid use benefit, training and more

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Trusted Contributor

I am bringing together various offers and benefits for Azure, all in one place, that I thought would be useful for the community. This is what will be covered -

 

  • Enterprise Agreement Support Offer
  • Azure Hybrid Use Benefit
  • Free training and certification offer
  • Microsoft IT Pro Cloud Essentials
  • Visual Studio subscriptions includes Azure credits

Enterprise Agreement Support Offer -  Ends June 30, 2017

 

This is a very specific offer but companies may be entitled to a free 12-month Azure support upgrade without knowing it.  It does have various stipulations, around buying Azure services via an Enterprise Agreement but it's well worth checking if you qualify.

 

For companies not purchasing an Azure support plan, they can get Azure Standard support at no additional charge.  Those companies that already have purchased Azure Standard support, they can get an upgrade to Azure ProDirect support at no additional charge.

 

More info available here, including how to redeem this offer - Enterprise Agreement Support Offer.

 

Azure Hybrid Use Benefit

 

Not an offer as such but a benefit some companies may not be aware of.  If you have Windows Server licences with Software Assurance, save up to 50 percent on Windows Server Virtual Machines.

 

The way this works is by using your licences to license the Windows Server part of an Azure virtual machine then you just pay for the compute cost of the VM.

 

 

Use your on-premises Windows Server licenses that include Software Assurance to save big on Windows Server VMs in Azure. By using your existing licenses, you pay the base compute rate and save up to 50 percent.Use your on-premises Windows Server licenses that include Software Assurance to save big on Windows Server VMs in Azure. By using your existing licenses, you pay the base compute rate and save up to 50 percent.

There a couple of ways this works but those with an Enterprise Agreement subscription, it's as simple as deploying VMs from specific Marketplace images that are pre-configured with Azure Hybrid Use Benefit.  These are the ones with [HUB] in the names: 

 

Azure Marketplace Images with pre-configured Azure Hybrid Use BenefitAzure Marketplace Images with pre-configured Azure Hybrid Use Benefit

More details:

 

Save up to 50 percent on Windows Server Virtual Machines With Azure Hybrid Use Benefit

 

Azure Hybrid Use Benefit for Windows Server

 

Free training and certification offer

 

Microsoft offers free Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) for Azure.  Microsoft says "MOOCs are so much more than online videos and demos – they incorporate videos, labs, graded assessments, office hours, and more".

 

Massively Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, are self-paced, interactive online learning environments that focus on core development skills for cloud and mobile technologies.Massively Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, are self-paced, interactive online learning environments that focus on core development skills for cloud and mobile technologies.

Not only this, Microsoft have certification offers for those looking to invest in their future development, boosting their skills and prospects. Here are more details on what is available: 

 

Completing a MOOC is one way to learn and demonstrate vital cloud skills, but it isn’t the only one. Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) exams remain a respected and recognized designation of cloud capability, and these offers can help you use MCP certification to differentiate your business.Completing a MOOC is one way to learn and demonstrate vital cloud skills, but it isn’t the only one. Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) exams remain a respected and recognized designation of cloud capability, and these offers can help you use MCP certification to differentiate your business.

 More details:

 

New cloud trainings for next-generation tech professionals

 

Main Azure skills landing page with MOOC and certification offers

 

Modern Learning: Grow Your Cloud Muscle with New Azure Training

 

Microsoft IT Pro Cloud Essentials

 

Microsoft IT Pro Cloud Essentials provides IT professionals with access to cloud services, training, support and certification - "Microsoft IT Pro Cloud Essentials is a free annual subscription which includes cloud services, education, and support benefits".

 

Here are a few highlights: 

 

  • Free Azure credits to try cloud scenarios like backup, disaster recovery, security & dev/test.
  • Free Pluralsight subscription for on-line training.
  • A free phone support incident for Azure or on-premises products.

 

 

More details:

 

Microsoft introduces free resources to help IT pros get started and build their careers in the cloud

 

Microsoft IT Pro Cloud Essentials main landing page

 

Visual Studio subscriptions includes Azure credits

 

For sake of completion, I'll mention Visual Studio paid subscriptions, which includes a monthly credit to run Azure services to develop and test apps. If you have any developers with one of these subscriptions they may have some Azure credits without realising it.

 

Monthly Azure credit for Visual Studio subscribers.png

Microsoft help to maximise these credits going even further:

 

"Use the Microsoft software included with your Visual Studio subscription on Azure Virtual Machines for dev/test at no extra charge—you’ll just pay the Linux rate for VMs you run, even VMs with SQL Server, SharePoint Server, or other software that is normally billed at a higher rate. Upload custom virtual machine images yourself or use one of our pre-configured images from the Azure Gallery."

 

More details -

 

Monthly Azure credit for Visual Studio subscribers

 

Finishing up, I hope that was a useful collection of resources.  It's worth checking out the Microsoft Azure Offer Details page for even more offers and deals.

 

Just writing this up, I am reminded how much Microsoft provide and help customers, IT Pros and developers to get the most out of Azure.

 

3 Replies
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This is a great summary, @Cian Allner ! It`s awesome to see you taking the time to put this together for other professionals that are looking for resources to get started with Azure and the Microsoft Cloud. Keep it up :)
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There is a new FAQ about Azure Hybrid Use Benefit that is well worth checking out.  Companies could be otherwise missing out on this cost saving benefit.  This FAQ has detail on how Azure Hybrid Use Benefit works and what you need to use it:

 

  Azure Hybrid Use Benefit with Windows Server FAQ

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For Azure hybrid use benefit, can Microsoft Partners use their IUR licensing with this?