Azure Hybrid Benefit

Azure is the most cost-effective cloud for your Windows Server or SQL Server migration.

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Now is the time to move to Azure and reap the rewards of cloud technology, including the ability to scale up or down quickly, pay only for what you use and save on compute power. Whether you are deploying new virtual machines, moving a few workloads or migrating your data centres as part of your hybrid cloud strategy, the Azure Hybrid Benefit provides big savings as you move to the cloud.

Save up to 40 per cent on Windows Server virtual machines with Azure Hybrid Benefit for Windows Server

Use your on-premises Windows Server licences with Software Assurance to save big on Azure. With this benefit, for each licence we will cover the cost of the OS (on up to two virtual machines!), while you just pay for base compute costs.

Save up to 40 per cent today1

Azure Hybrid Benefit Savings Calculator

Enter the number of core licences you own that are covered with active Software Assurance

Total licences must be greater than zero

Enter planned Azure deployment of Windows Virtual Machines

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Please enter more than zero hours per month

Save up to 82 per cent with Azure Reserved Virtual Machine (VM) Instances

You can reserve virtual machines in advance and enjoy cost savings of up to 82% on pay-as-you-go prices when used alongside Azure Hybrid Benefit. Plus, Reserved VM Instances provide price predictability, as well as the flexibility to exchange or cancel to get pro-rated refunds should your needs change.

Learn more about Azure Reserved VM Instances

Activate your Hybrid Benefit for Windows Server

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  • The Azure Hybrid Benefit helps you get more value from your Windows Server licences and save up to 40 per cent* on virtual machines. You can use the benefit with Windows Server Datacenter and Standard edition licences covered with Software Assurance. Depending on the edition, you can convert or re-use your licences to run Windows Server virtual machines in Azure and pay a lower base compute rate (Linux virtual machine rates).

    * Actual savings may vary based on region, instance type or usage.

  • The base compute rate that is used to calculate the Azure Hybrid Benefit is equal to the Linux rate for virtual machines.
  • The Azure Hybrid Benefit is applicable to Windows Server Standard and Datacenter Editions.
  • Each two-processor licence or each set of 16-core licences are entitled to two instances of up to 8 cores, or one instance of up to 16 cores. The Azure Hybrid Benefit for Standard Edition licences can only be used once, either on premises or in Azure. Datacenter edition benefits allow for simultaneous usage both on-premises and in Azure.
  • The Azure Hybrid Benefit is available if you own Windows Server Standard or Datacenter edition licences with active Software Assurance. It is not restricted to any specific licensing programme.

Save on Azure SQL Database Managed Instance with the Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server

If you are an SQL Server customer with Software Assurance, you will soon be able to use your existing SQL Server licences towards Azure SQL Database Managed Instance and pay only for the underlying compute and storage.


  • SQL Database Managed Instance is an expansion of the existing SQL Database service, providing a third deployment option alongside single databases and elastic pools. It is designed to provide the strongest compatibility with existing SQL Server applications for database lift-and-shift to a fully managed PaaS, without application changes. SQL Database Managed Instance provides additional compatibility with key features available with the SQL Server programming model and out-of-the-box support for the large majority of SQL Server features, like SQLAgent, Change Data Capture, DBMail and Service Broker, to name a few, and accompanying tools and services.

  • Azure Hybrid Benefit for SQL Server helps you maximise the value from your current licence investments and accelerate your migration to the cloud. The Azure-based hybrid benefit enables you to use your SQL Server licences with Software Assurance to pay a reduced rate for Azure SQL Database Managed Instance.

  • This hybrid benefit is only available for use with Azure SQL Database Managed Instance.
  • Further details about the programme and how you can participate will be coming in Q1 CY2018.

Additional Resources

Full FAQs

Review frequently asked questions on Azure Hybrid Benefit


Download a summary of the Azure Hybrid Benefit

Windows Server on Azure

Download the Ultimate Guide to Windows Server on Azure


Review technical tutorials and more resources

  1. Actual savings may vary based on location, instance type or usage
  2. Savings based on two D2 v2 Promo virtual machines in West US 2 Region running 550 hours per month for 12 months, base compute rate at CentOS or Ubuntu Linux rate for West US 2, and Software Assurance cost (Level A) for Windows Server Standard edition (one 2-processor licence or a set of 16 core licences). Actual savings may vary based on location, instance type or usage. Prices as of June 2017. Prices subject to change.
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