Azure Purchase FAQ

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Does Azure support IPv6?

The Internet has expanded beyond the capacity of its early underpinning- the IPv4 protocol. Many new mobile networks and new technologies such as Internet of Things depend on the virtually unlimited address capacity offered by IPv6. A growing list of governments require IPv6 client support for the services they buy and build. Now your Azure hosted services can reach these new customers with Azure IPv6-load-balanced, dual-stack (IPv4+IPv6) Internet connectivity for Azure VMs. Native IPv6 connectivity (TCP, UDP, HTTP(S)) all the way to the VM enables a broad range of service architectures. IPv6 for Azure VMs is available now in most Azure regions. Data transfers over IPv6 are billed at the same rates as IPv4. For more information, please visit Overview of IPv6 for Azure Load Balancer | Microsoft Azure

Can I try Azure for free, without any risk of being charged?

Yes. With our Spending Limit feature, customers who sign up for a Free Trial, Visual Studio, MPN, or BizSpark offer can use Azure without any fear of getting charged as long as they keep the Spending Limit feature turned on.

What payment options do I have in purchasing Azure?

You can purchase Azure using a credit or debit card. Please note that we do not accept prepaid and virtual credit cards. There may be a delay before discounts are reflected on your bill. You are solely responsible for any credit card interest or other credit card charges that may result.

The other payment option is to be invoiced. Once you opt for the invoice option, you can't move to the credit card option. To sign up for invoicing, please go here.

Can I still buy Azure on a 6-Month and 12-Month Plan?

The 6-month and 12-month plans are no longer available. Existing customers on these plans can continue to utilize Azure under the terms of these plans. Customers looking for additional discounts and benefits in exchange for a deeper commitment to the platform can enter into an Enterprise Agreement (EA).

I have server licenses. Can I transfer them to Azure and run them on Virtual Machines?

Yes, through license mobility if you have SA you can "bring-your-own-license" for all Virtual Machines supported server products except Windows Server.

What is the Azure SLA agreement?

Azure has separate SLA’s for all of services that are generally available and not in preview. Please refer to our SLA page for the latest details

How do I optimize around billing charges?

There are several ways to optimize your Azure applications:

  • Deploy two or more instances to qualify for the SLA
  • Allocate a compute instance of the right size as per the application's requirements
  • Make use of our free inbound data transfers to upload data to Azure
  • Allocate compute and storage in the same region. All data transfers within a region are free
  • Use Content Distribution Network (CDN) to reduce cost and improve performance
  • Delete your test application immediately after your test concludes. Azure staging environment is not free. Whenever an application is deployed (even in staging), you will get charged. You can also deploy the application locally using the Azure SDK until you are comfortable deploying to the Azure cloud.
  • Allocate the right sized SQL Database based on your needs.
  • Check out Getting started with Azure cost management.
How can I edit my payment information for my Azure Subscription/s?

To view and edit the Azure account information, you must sign in to the Azure Account Center as the account administrator.

  1. Go to the Azure Account Center.
  2. On the subscriptions page, click the subscription for which you want to update the payment method.
  3. On the subscription summary page, click Manage payment method. The Manage Payment Method tool appears in a separate window.
  4. On the Manage payment method page, you can Edit existing payment methods or add a new one.

For information, like how to remove a credit card, see How to change the credit card used to pay for an Azure subscription.

Are Azure and SQL Database available through SPLA?

There are currently no plans to offer Azure or SQL Database through SPLA.

If I turn off the Spending Limit can I turn it back on?

You can have the Spending Limit feature automatically re-enable at the beginning of your next billing cycle. The Spending Limit cannot be re-enabled for the current billing period once turned off.

Who can purchase Azure services?

Azure is intended for use by businesses to build cloud scale applications and services. However, individuals (i.e. consumers) may also purchase Azure services.

What are the Azure SLA Credits?

Azure SLA Credits are calculated on a per subscription basis as a percentage of the bill for that service in the billing month the SLA was missed. The service credits are applied to the subsequent month’s bill. Generally, we provide 10% credit if we fall below the first threshold (99.95% or 99.9%, depending on the service) and 25% if we fall beneath the subsequent threshold (99%). Please refer to our SLA page for complete details.

Can I adjust the amount of the Spending Limit?

No, the Spending Limit is set at $0 and cannot be adjusted. It is designed to enable customers on our Free Trial, Visual Studio, MPN, or BizSpark offers to utilize Azure with complete assurance of not being billed.

How will Azure Service Level Agreements work with current on-premises Microsoft licensing agreements?

Azure Service Level Agreements are independent of our on-premises Microsoft licensing agreements. Our SLAs for Azure provide you a monthly uptime guarantee for those services you consume in the cloud, with SLA credits against what we have billed you in the event we fail to meet the guarantee.

How do we know in advance about service downtime for planned maintenance?

Azure is designed to avoid downtime for customer applications, storage and service management capability during maintenance activities on the Azure platform. Our availability commitment applies to customer applications which use a minimum of two role instances. You can learn about Azure best practices for mitigating downtime by reading High availability for applications built on Microsoft Azure. The Azure SLA is documented here.

In the event of an unplanned service disruption on the Azure Platform, status updates will be made on our service dashboard page and customers will also receive notice in the management portal.

What will be the VAT rate charged for Azure purchases in the EU?
  • If the customer is located in Ireland and does not hold a VAT exemption certificate, Irish VAT at the current rate of 23% will be applied to all invoices. VAT exempt Irish customers will be invoiced at 0% Irish VAT on receipt by Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited of a valid customer VAT excemption certificate.
  • If the customer is located outside Ireland but within the EU and is VAT registered, 0% Irish VAT will be applied under the reverse charge procedure but only on receipt of the customer’s valid local VAT number during the purchase process.
  • If the customer is located outside Ireland but within the EU and is not VAT registered or is VAT registered but does not provide Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited with a valid VAT number during the purchase process, local VAT rate will be applied.
  • If the customer is located outside the EU (except Switzerland and Liechtenstein), 0% Irish VAT will be applied.
  • If the customer is located in Switzerland or Liechtenstein, Swiss VAT at the current rate of 8% will be applied.
  • If no VAT number is provided during the purchase process, VAT will be charged as set out above and will appear on each invoice as appropriate. To amend and get a VAT ID added, contact customer support
  • Note: Any Irish or Swiss VAT applied may be recoverable from the appropriate tax authority, subject to conditions. Please contact your tax adviser, if required.
How do I register my US or Canadian tax exempt status?
  • Start by creating a new request on the Azure portal here. Note: to create a request, you must already have created an account.
  • Create a new request by clicking the + New support request link.
  • Select 'Billing' as the Issue type and choose the included support plan and click 'next'.
  • Choose severity type ‘C’, problem type 'Other General Questions', and type 'Tax exemption request' into the 'Details' section. Select today's date, attach your exemption forms via the File Upload button and click 'next' to proceed.
  • Select your preferred method of contact and enter your contact information and click the ‘Create’ button.
Can notifications be sent to a different email address other than the Account Owner email address associated with my account?

Yes. If you would like to specify a different email address to receive notifications, please follow these directions:

  1. Go to My Account in the top right corner of the Azure homepage
  2. Click on Usage and Billing
  3. Click on the Profile tab
  4. In the right corner under Communication preferences, click here to update your email address in which you would like to receive notifications.

Do we restrict resale of Azure based service into countries under embargo?


In which countries/regions is Azure commercially available?

  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • Angola
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • Bolivia
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Bulgaria
  • Cabo Verde
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Croatia
  • Curaçao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Estonia
  • Ethiopia
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Greece
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Korea
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Libya
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macao
  • Macedonia (FYRO)
  • Malaysia
  • Malta
  • Mauritius
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Morocco
  • Namibia
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Nigeria
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestinian Authority
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Rwanda
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Turkmenistan
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Uzbekistan
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Virgin Islands, US
  • Yemen
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

What currencies can be used to purchase Azure?