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Service Bus pricing

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Azure Service Bus is a messaging infrastructure that sits between applications allowing them to exchange messages for improved scale and resiliency.

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Prices are estimates only and are not intended as actual price quotes. Actual pricing may vary depending on the type of agreement entered with Microsoft, date of purchase and the currency exchange rate. Prices are calculated based on US dollars and converted using Thomson Reuters benchmark rates refreshed on the first day of each calendar month. Sign in to the Azure pricing calculator to see pricing based on your current programme/offer with Microsoft. Contact an Azure sales specialist for more information on pricing or to request a price quote. For more information on Azure pricing see frequently asked questions.

Service Bus comes in Basic, standard, and premium tiers. Here’s how they compare:

Feature Basic Standard Premium
Queues Available Available Available
Scheduled messages Available Available Available
Topics Not available Available Available
Transactions Not available Available Available
De-duplication Not available Available Available
Sessions Not available Available Available
ForwardTo/SendVia Not available Available Available
Message Size 256 KB 256 KB 100 MB
Resource isolation Not available Not available Available
Geo-Disaster Recovery (Geo-DR) Not available Not available


*Requires additional Service Bus Premium namespaces in another region.

Java Messaging Service (JMS) 2.0 Support Not available Not available Available
Availability Zones (AZ) support Not available Not available Available

11,000 brokered connections are included with the standard messaging tier (via the base charge) and can be shared across all queues, topics, subscriptions, and event hubs within the associated Azure subscription.

Service Bus premium runs in dedicated resources to provide higher throughput and more consistent performance.

Messaging operations

An operation is any API call to the Service Bus service.

Operations $- per million operations
Base charge 1 $-/hour
Hourly $-/hour

Brokered connections

Number of AMQP connections or HTTP calls to Service Bus.

Standard Tier
Premium Tier
Brokered connections are not charged in the premium tier.

Hybrid connections and Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) relays

Hybrid connections are charged per listener unit and for any data overage exceeding the included 5 GB/month. WCF relays are charged by message volume and relay hours.

Hybrid Connection Pricing
Connection charge (includes 5 GB of data/month) $- per listener
Data transfer overage (data exceeding the included 5 GB/month)* $-/GB
*The data transfer limit of 5 GB covers total data transfer across all listener units.
WCF Relay Pricing
Relay hours $- for every 100 relay hours
Messages $- for every 10,000 messages
The monthly prices are calculated based on 730 hours of usage. Connections will be charged in one-hour increments.

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Additional resources

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  • The relay counts each message sent to the relay, and each message sent by the relay, as billable. A billable message is a data frame of at most 64 KB. If a message exceeds 64 KB, such as an HTTP reply that returns an image, each further 64 KB counts as an additional billable message. For a normal relayed service that implements a request/response scheme, the request first travels to the relay, then to the service, and the reply traverses the same path. That amounts to at least four billable messages. For a multicast service that has 4 listeners, the message sent to the relay counts as 1 message, and the 4 messages sent to the listeners also each count as a message, resulting in a total of 5 messages.

  • For brokered entities (queues and topics or subscriptions), an operation is any API interaction with Service Bus service on any protocol.

    A send, receive, delete for a message that's less than or equal to 64 KB in size is considered as one billable operation. If the message is greater than 64 KB in size, the number of billable operations is calculated according to the message size in multiples of 64 KB. For example, an 8-KB message sent to the Service Bus will be billed as one operation, but a 96-KB message sent to the Service Bus will be billed as two operations. Reading the 8-KB message with a lock and then completing or explicitly abandoning the message will be billed as two operations. Renewing the lock on a message also incurs an operation.

    Multiple deliveries of the same message (for example, message fan out to multiple subscribers or message retrieval after abandon, deferral, or dead lettering) will be counted as independent operations. For example, in the case of a topic with three subscriptions, a single 64 KB message sent and subsequently received will generate four billable operations, one "in" plus three "out," assuming all messages are delivered to all subscriptions and deleted during the read.

    Additionally creating, reading (listing), updating, and deleting a queue, topic, or subscription will each incur an operation charge.

    Operations are API calls made against queue, topic, or subscription service endpoints. This includes management, send/receive, and session state operations.

  • Relay hours are billed for the cumulative amount of time during which each Service Bus Relay is "open". A relay is implicitly instantiated and opened at a given Service Bus address (service namespace URL) when a relay-enabled WCF service, or "relay listener," first connects to that address. It's closed only when the last listener disconnects from its address. Therefore, for billing purposes a relay is considered "open" from the time the first relay listener connects, to the time the last relay listener disconnects from the Service Bus address of that relay.

  • A brokered connection is defined as one of the following:

    1. An AMQP connection from a client into a Service Bus topic, subscription, queue, or event hub.
    2. An HTTP call to receive a message from a Service Bus topic or queue that has a receive time-out value greater than zero.

    Microsoft charges for the peak number of concurrent brokered connections that exceed the included quantity (1,000 in the standard and premium tier). Peaks are measured on an hourly basis, prorated by dividing by 730 hours in a month, and added up over the monthly billing period. The included quantity (1,000 brokered connections per month) is applied at the end of the billing period against the sum of the prorated hourly peaks.


    1. 5,000 clients connect via a single AMQP connection each, and receive commands from a Service Bus topic and send events to queues. If all clients connect for 12 hours every day, you will see the following connection charges (in addition to any other Service Bus charges)—5,000 connections * 12 hours * 30.5 days / 730 = 2,500 brokered connections. After the monthly allowance of 1,000 brokered connections, you would be charged for 1,500 brokered connections.
    2. 5,000 clients receive messages from a Service Bus queue via HTTP, specifying a non-zero time-out. If all devices connect for 12 hours every day, you will see the following connection charges (in addition to any other Service Bus charges)—5,000 HTTP receive connections * 12 hours per day * 30.5 days / 730 hours = 2,500 brokered connections.
  • Yes, they do. There are no connection charges for sending events using HTTP, regardless of the number of sending systems or devices. Receiving events with HTTP using a time-out greater than zero, sometimes called "long polling," generate brokered connection charges. AMQP connections generate brokered connection charges regardless of whether the connections are being used to send or receive. Note that 100 brokered connections are allowed at no charge in a basic namespace (this is also the maximum number of brokered connections allowed for the Azure subscription). The first 1,000 brokered connections across any and all standard namespaces in an Azure subscription are included at no extra charge (beyond the base charge). Since these allowances are enough to cover many service-to-service messaging scenarios, brokered connection charges usually only become relevant if you plan to use AMQP or HTTP long-polling with a large number of clients, for example, to achieve more efficient event streaming, or enable bi-directional communication with thousands or millions of devices or app instances.

  • No, the standard base charge is billed only once per month per Azure subscription. This means that after you create a single standard tier Service Bus namespace, you will be able to create as many additional standard tier namespaces as you like under that same Azure subscription without incurring additional base charges.

  • The premium tier of Service Bus messaging provides all the messaging features of Azure Service Bus queues and topics with predictable, repeatable performance, higher throughput, and improved availability. The premium tier uses a dedicated resource allocation model to provide workload isolation and consistent performance. Because the compute and memory resources in the premium tier are dedicated, there are no per-message transaction charges as in other tiers. All transactions are included in the message unit allocation.

  • A messaging unit is a set of dedicated resources exclusively reserved for premium namespaces. This resource set can deliver a consistent and repeatable performance of messaging workloads. Each premium namespace can have 1, 2, or 4 messaging units and the resource allocation grows linearly—2 messaging units will consist of twice as many resources allocated as 1 messaging unit.

  • The premium tier of Service Bus messaging is a flat daily rate per messaging unit purchased. Namespaces created as premium can have 1, 2, or 4 messaging units which will each accrue the given number of messaging unit daily rate charges. Premium namespaces can have the number of purchased messaging units changed at any time, but the daily rate is based on the maximum number of message units assigned to the namespace at any time.

  • Yes, it's technically possible to upgrade and downgrade between premium and other tiers. For guidelines on how to migrate your solution from standard messaging to premium messaging please read this blog post.

  • A hybrid connection allows you to establish bi-directional, binary stream communication between two networked applications, one or both parties can reside behind NATs or Firewalls. The listener that accepts this relayed connection and the sender that initiates the connection can both be implemented on any platform, and in any language, that has a basic WebSocket capability, including the WebSocket API in most web browsers.

  • When you create your first hybrid connection listener you will be charged at a per listener unit rate. The same rate applies to each individual listener that you decide to create. 5 GB of free data transfer per month is included with the service. You can use the 5 GB of free data transfer across all your listener units. You will be charged for data transfer overage if your aggregate data transfer across all listener units is more than 5 GB.

    Sample pricing 1—If you have a single listener, such as an instance of the hybrid connections manager installed and continuously running for the entire month, and you send 3 GB of data across the connection during the course of the month, your total charge will be $-.

    Sample pricing 2—If you have a single listener, such as an instance of the hybrid connections manager installed and continuously running for the entire month, and you send 10 GB of data across the connection during the course of the month, your total charge will be $-. That's based on $- for the connection and first 5 GB plus $- for the additional 5 GB of data.

    Sample pricing 3—If you have two instances, A and B, of the hybrid connections manager installed and continuously running for the entire month, and you send 3 GB of data across connection A, and 6 GB across connection B, for a total of 9 GB of data, your total charge will be $-. That's based on $- for connection A plus $- for connection B plus $- for the additional 4 GB of data overage.

  • We will charge 64 KB for each connection to your listener. This will be deducted from the 5 GB free we offer each month with listener units. The listener unit charge is calculated per hour in increments of 5 minutes. You will not be charged for multiple opens and closes for dev/test purposes.

  • If you open a connection and do not transfer any data, we will transfer 1 KB each minute on your behalf to keep the connection alive. We do this so the network doesn’t auto-close the connection every few minutes. The associated cost to do this for one connected listener is less than $0.05 per month.

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