3. Using the Azure Pricing Calculator

Understanding Azure Costs and Estimation

When getting started with subscriptions and support plans, it's crucial to comprehend the associated costs, particularly within Azure. This guide will walk you through how to estimate these costs with Azure's pricing calculator.

Using the Azure Price Calculator

Azure Price Calculator allows you to:

  • Pick any Azure product to view its pricing.
  • Select common scenarios or solutions to estimate costs, such as a CD (Continuous Delivery) solution for containers.

Example: Estimating the Cost of a Virtual Machine

  1. Add a Product: Begin by adding a product like a virtual machine.
  2. Price Tier and Costs: The calculator displays the price tier and associated costs per hour. Note that the price depends on various factors including the Azure region.

    • Changing the region results in different pricing for the same service.
  3. Adding a SQL Server License: When you add a SQL server license to the VM:

    • The cost incorporates the SQL server license.
    • You can configure additional settings and licenses.
  4. Discounts and Savings:

    • Azure Hybrid Benefit: If you have a valid license, you can get a discount.
    • Commitment Savings Plan: Committing to use a certain capacity over time reduces the price.

Additional Pricing Factors

  • Bandwidth: Outgoing bandwidth incurs costs.

    • For instance, transferring 50 GB of data between the US and East Asia costs approximately $2 per month.
  • Support Plans: Adding a support plan, like the standard plan, costs around $100 per month.

Subscription Types and Cost Adjustments

  1. Subscription Type: Example - Microsoft Customer Agreement, which is another name for the pay-as-you-go subscription.

    • Estimated Cost: $432 per month (VM and another service).
  2. Test Pricing: If you enable test pricing, the cost can be significantly reduced. For instance, it reduces the monthly cost from $432 to $267—a major discount useful for non-production environments.


Understanding Azure pricing and using tools like the Azure Price Calculator can help you efficiently plan and manage your budget. By leveraging discounts, committing to savings plans, and understanding regional cost variations, you can optimize your expenditure on Azure services.