Posted by: kurtsh | June 19, 2013

OFFER: Free Windows Azure credits for MSDN Subscribers – up to $150/month!

Scott Guthrie posted the details of a ridiculous new offer we’re making for MSDN Subscribers, in addition to some amazing discounted rates for Windows Azure:

We are making the above discounted rates even more compelling by also giving every MSDN subscriber up to $150 per month of monetary credits that can be used to run any Windows Azure resource for Dev/Test purposes.  MSDN Professional Subscribers will be provided with $50/month, MSDN Premium Subscribers with $100/month, and MSDN Ultimate Subscribers with $150/month.

These monetary credits can be applied towards any Windows Azure resource being used for Dev/Test purposes.  This includes: Virtual Machines (both Windows and Linux), SQL Databases, Cloud Services, Web Sites, Mobile Services, Hadoop Clusters, BizTalk Services, Storage, Media and more.  The previous per-unit restrictions in place with the old MSDN offer are also being removed – instead you now have a monetary credit that can be applied and mixed/matched on resources however you want.

Below are just a few examples of how a MSDN Premium customer (who will now gets $100/month of credits with their MSDN subscription) could use the monetary credit:

1) A MSDN Premium subscriber can now run 3 Windows Server VMs for 16 hours a day (at 6 cents/hr) every day of the month.  And he or she can run SQL Server Enterprise, BizTalk Server, or SharePoint Server in them using their MSDN use-rights at no additional charge.  And if they ran these 3 VMs for 16 hours a day for 31 days in the month they’d still have $10.32 in credit left over to spend on something else! 🙂


2) Alternatively the $100/month credit could be applied towards spinning up 80 Windows Server VMs (with SQL, BizTalk, SharePoint, etc) to use in a load-test for 20 hours

3) Or the $100 credit could be used to spin up 50 Hadoop cluster nodes for 10 hours of a dev/test MapReduce run

4) Or the $100 credit could be used to dev/test 100 web-sites with a SQL Database

The above examples provide just a flavor of the different options now available with this program.  The great thing about the monetary credits is that you can use them with any Windows Azure resource – so you have the flexibility to apply them in whatever combination you want.  The credits themselves reset every month (meaning if you are a MSDN Premium customer the credits will reset to $100/month every month).  So every month you also have the opportunity to change how you allocate them however you want. 

You can optionally choose to pay additional money on top of the monetary credit (meaning if you need $200 of resources in a month, the MSDN Premium Monetary Credit will cover the first $100 of usage and then you can pay the rest).  Note that any overages will still take advantage of the MSDN Discount Rate (meaning the VMs will only be charged at 6 cents/hr) so you still benefit from a major price discount on that as well. 

By default we enable a “spending limit of $0” on MSDN based subscriptions to ensure that customers are never accidentally billed for usage above their MSDN credits.  You can turn this of if you want to use more resources than the built-in credits support and pay for overages.

Read more about the offers & discounts at Scott’s blog at:


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