Visual Studio Online pricing

Cloud-powered development environments accessible from anywhere

Visual Studio Online is currently in public preview.

Visual Studio Online enables you to create powerful cloud-hosted development environments which are accessible from Visual Studio Code or a browser-based editor.

Pricing details

With Visual Studio Online, you can create fully managed, cloud-hosted development environments, or register your own self-hosted development environments (physical or virtual) with the service.

For cloud-hosted environments, each environment instance is billed based on the number of consumed “environment units”, which are calculated according to an environment’s instance size, the total time the environment is active (i.e. a user is connected to it via the browser-based editor or via a client such as Visual Studio Code) and the total lifetime of the environment (base units).

The price of an environment unit is $-. Details of environment unit consumption rates are covered in the table below:

Instance type Active Environment Units consumed per hour Base Environment Units consumed per hour
Standard (4 cores, 8 GB RAM, 64 GB HDD) 125 2
Premium (8 cores, 16 GB RAM, 64 GB HDD) 242 2
Self-hosted No charge No charge

The charge for each environment instance can be calculated as:

(Active hours x Active Environment Units) + (Total hours x Base Environment Units) x $- per unit = cost for that instance

Some example pricing for common scenarios over a 730-hour month:

Scenario Instance type Active hours Total hours Approximate cost
Reviewing a pull request Standard 2 2 $-
Occasional use on a heavy data processing workload Premium 40 730 $-
Full-time development Standard 100 730 $-

For the full-time development example above:

(100 Active hours x 125 Standard Active Environment Units) + (730 Total hours x 2 Base Environment Units) = 13,960 units x $- per unit = $-

Support and SLA


  • Environment Units bundle compute, IP, network, snapshots and disk costs together. A Visual Studio environment instance is billed on an hourly basis according to a base set of environment units, which depend on the environment size. A standard Visual Studio environment has a different base rate of environment units to a premium Visual Studio environment due to the difference in compute, IP, network, snapshots and disk costs together.
  • Once created, you can connect to a cloud-hosted environment by opening it in the browser or connecting to it from a client like Visual Studio Code. While connected, the environment is “active”. If you disconnect, the environment goes into a sleep state until you either connect to it again or delete it.
  • Time is measured in seconds, so you will be billed for 6 minutes and 45 seconds of active time in environment units.
  • Yes, once created, a cloud-hosted environment is billed at the base rate until you delete it.
  • By default, Visual Studio Online provisions fully managed environments that run in Azure. These environments are backed by the full power of the cloud (always available, quick to create, scalable, etc). However, you may also register your own physical or virtualised environment to your Visual Studio Online plan. This allows you to have some of the benefits of Visual Studio Online (e.g. use of the web-based editor) while leveraging your existing, potentially specialised, infrastructure.
  • The documentation for Visual Studio Online includes a complete Visual Studio Online FAQ.


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