Cost Management, Management and Governance, Migration
Azure Cost Management and Billing updates – July 2021
By Michael Flanakin Program Manager, Azure Cost Management
4 min read
Whether you’re a new student, a thriving startup, or the largest enterprise, you have financial constraints, and you need to know what you’re spending, where, and how to plan for the future. Nobody wants a surprise when it comes to the bill, and this is where Azure Cost Management and Billing comes in.
We’re always looking for ways to learn more about your challenges and how Azure Cost Management and Billing can help you better understand where you’re accruing costs in the cloud, identify and prevent bad spending patterns, and optimize costs to empower you to do more with less. Here are a few of the latest improvements and updates based on your feedback:
- Confirm billing policy status in Configuration.
- What's new in Cost Management Labs.
- New ways to save money with Azure.
- New videos and learning opportunities.
- Documentation updates.
Let’s dig into the details.
Confirm billing policy status in Configuration
The first step for any organization on the road to understanding and optimizing their costs is to ensure that everyone is able to see the cost they're responsible for. This is exactly what Enterprise Agreement and Microsoft Customer Agreement billing policies do. And now, you can confirm billing policy status in the same place you manage your cost configuration settings.
Enterprise Agreement billing accounts and Microsoft Customer Agreement billing profiles both have three billing policies available:
- The Cost Management (or view charges) policy controls whether people within your organization can view, manage, and optimize costs. We recommend leaving this enabled to ensure everyone is aware of and can optimize costs.
- The Reservations policy controls whether subscription users can purchase Azure reservations. Note you can purchase your desired reservations and disable this to manage when reservations are purchased.
- The Marketplace policy indicates which offers are available for purchase within the Azure Marketplace.
Cloud Solution Providers on Azure plan also have the Cost Management (view charges) policy available for each customer account.
Find these settings and more in Cost Management configuration and let us know what you'd like to see next.
What's new in Cost Management Labs
With Cost Management Labs, you get a sneak peek at what’s coming in Azure Cost Management and can engage directly with us to share feedback and help us better understand how you use the service, so we can deliver more tuned and optimized experiences. Here are a few features you can see in Cost Management Labs:
- Updated: Confirm billing policy status in Configuration – Now available in the public portal
Updated Configuration screen that separates scope and cost management settings and shows whether Cost Management, Reservations, and Azure Marketplace are enabled for your Enterprise Agreement billing account or Microsoft Customer Agreement billing profile.
- View cost for your resources
The cost for your resources is one click away from the resource overview in the preview portal. Just click View cost to quickly jump to the cost of that particular resource.
- Change scope from the menu
Change scope from the menu for quicker navigation. You can opt-in using Try Preview. Share feedback about this preview.
- Open configuration items in the main menu
This is an experimental option to show the selected configuration screen as a nested menu item in the Cost Management menu. You can opt-in using Try Preview from Cost Management Labs. Share feedback about this preview.
- Streamlined Cost Management menu
Only show settings in Configuration. Remove Cloudyn, Exports, and Connectors for AWS from the Cost Management menu. You can opt-in using Try Preview from Cost Management Labs. Share feedback about this preview.
Of course, that’s not all. Every change in Azure Cost Management is available in Cost Management Labs a week before it’s in the full Azure portal. We’re eager to hear your thoughts and understand what you’d like to see next. What are you waiting for? Try Cost Management Labs today.
New ways to save money with Azure
This month brings nine more offers to help you reduce and optimize your costs:
- General availability: Confidential Computing price reduction on DCsv2 virtual machines.
- General availability: App Service Environment v3.
- General availability: Virtual Machine (VM) level disk bursting on more VM types.
- Preview: Disk pool for Azure VMware Solution.
- Five more free services are available with an Azure free account:
- Azure Database for PostgreSQL.
- Azure Database for MySQL.
- Azure Key Vault.
- Azure Logic Apps.
- Encoding in Azure Media Services.
New videos and learning opportunities
For those visual learners out there, there are three new videos:
- How to get started with Microsoft Azure (3 minutes).
- Optimize costs of your backups with Azure Backup (12 minutes).
- Advisor Clinic: Lower costs with Azure Virtual Machine reservations (6 minutes).
Follow the Azure Cost Management and Billing YouTube channel to stay in the loop with new videos as they’re released and let us know what you'd like to see next.
Want a more guided experience? Start with Control Azure spending and manage bills with Azure Cost Management and Billing.
Here are a few documentation updates you might be interested in:
- Added “What's new” link to the Cost Management and Billing documentation.
- Account portal retiring on December 31, 2021.
- Change billing subscription for an Azure reservation.
- Track your Microsoft Azure Consumption Commitment.
- Troubleshoot: Can't view an invoice in the Azure portal.
Want to keep an eye on all of the documentation updates? Check out the Cost Management and Billing doc change history in the azure-docs repository on GitHub. If you see something missing, select Edit at the top of the document and submit a quick pull request.
These are just a few of the big updates from last month. Don’t forget to check out the previous Azure Cost Management and Billing updates. We’re always listening and making constant improvements based on your feedback, so please keep the feedback coming.
Follow @AzureCostMgmt on Twitter and subscribe to the YouTube channel for updates, tips, and tricks. You can also share ideas and vote up others in the Cost Management feedback forum or join the research panel to participate in a future study and help shape the future of Azure Cost Management and Billing.
We know these are trying times for everyone. Best wishes from the Azure Cost Management and Billing team. Stay safe and stay healthy.