Windows Azure Support FAQ
Overview of Windows Azure Support
- What is Windows Azure Support?
Windows Azure Support provides a deep level of technical support for everyone from individual developers to multinational enterprises. It offers a variety of choices that span from basic break-fix support to rapid response support for mission critical applications as well as onsite professional services that help you plan, assess, and optimize your deployment.
- What support is included free in all Azure subscriptions?
- How do I decide which plan is right for my business needs?
We have designed our Windows Azure Support plans to meet different business needs. You can choose among four support plans: Developer, Standard, Professional Direct and Premier. Visit the Windows Azure Support page for more information.
- Developer: you get unlimited 1:1 break-fix support via the web
- Standard: you get faster response time for higher severity issues, and can request phone support up to three times a month
- Professional Direct (Pro-Direct): you get unlimited web and phone support, even faster response times than Standard with priority routing and escalation assistance. You also have access to developer coaching and educational events, designed to accelerate your development
- Premier: in addition to Pro-Direct features, you get access to an Application Development Manager and onsite professional services that help you assess, plan, optimize your deployment. If you choose Rapid Response, an add-on feature within Premier, you will be supported by a designated team of engineers familiar with your application 24X7 with 15-min response time for your highest severity issues.
Purchase and Billing
- How much does Windows Azure Support cost?
We offer three Windows Azure Support plans as well as our Premier offers to meet a variety of needs.
|Windows Azure Support Plans*||Pricing|
|Developer ||$29 flat fee per month |
|Standard ||$300 flat fee per month |
|Professional Direct ||$1000 flat fee per month |
|Premier ||Custom (visit here for more information) |
* Windows Azure Support subscriptions through the Microsoft Online Services Program have a 6-month term. Windows Azure Support subscriptions through an Enterprise Agreement (EA) are either co-terminus with your EA or have a 12-month term.
- Does the flat monthly rate cover a single Windows Azure subscription or the entire account?
The flat monthly cost for Windows Azure Support covers the entire account regardless of how many subscriptions you have under the account or how much usage you have with Windows Azure. All subscriptions under an account share the same support plan.
- How do I purchase Windows Azure Support?
If you purchase Windows Azure through our online channel, you can purchase a Developer, Standard, or Professional Direct Support subscription through the Windows Azure Support page. You must be the account owner to purchase a support plan.
- When will I be billed for Windows Azure Support?
When you purchase a Windows Azure Support plan, you will be charged immediately for the first month. You will be charged the monthly amount on the 1st day of each subsequent billing cycle.
- How do I cancel my Windows Azure subscription?
Windows Azure Support subscription has a 6-month term, and we require commitment for the duration of term. Cancelation before the term expires will not stop the payments for the remaining months. An account owner can cancel the Windows Azure Support subscription by logging into the Windows Azure Billing Portal, going to the Subscriptions tab, and selecting Cancel.
- What happens at the end of the term?
At the end of your 6-month term, your subscriptions will automatically renew to the same Windows Azure Support plan for another 6 months, using the same payment instrument. As an account owner, you can elect to turn off the auto-renew functionality.
If you do not wish to auto renew, please log into the Windows Azure Account portal, select the support subscription in question, click on the "Change renewal details", and unselect the default option to auto renew.
- How do I renew my Windows Azure Support subscription?
If you have not turned off the auto-renew functionality on your Windows Azure Support subscription, you don’t need to do anything. Your subscription will automatically be renewed for another term once the current term ends. If you have turned off the auto-renew functionality, your Windows Azure Support subscription will expire at the end of the term. You can then go to the Windows Azure Support page to purchase a new Windows Azure Support subscription.
- How do I upgrade to a higher-tier Windows Azure Support plan?
You can upgrade to a higher-tier plan by submitting a billing support incident documenting your desires to upgrade. We will waive the remaining payments on your original Windows Azure Support subscription and charge you at the higher tier for the remaining months of your initial commitment.
- What taxes do I pay for Windows Azure Support?
Applicable services taxes and/or VAT may apply for Windows Azure support subscriptions. Please check with your tax department or advisor.
Using Windows Azure Support
- How many support incidents can I submit each month?
You may submit an unlimited number of incidents each month.
- How quickly will I get an initial response?
Our initial response times (IRT) depend on the severity of the incident submitted and the Windows Azure Support plan you have. For more information on IRT definitions please visit the Windows Azure Support page.
| ||Premier for Azure and|
|Severity A ||1 hour IRT (15 min IRT for Rapid Response within Premier) ||2 hour IRT ||2 hour IRT (billing issues only) |
|Severity B ||2 hour IRT ||4 hour IRT ||4 hour IRT (billing issues only) |
|Severity C ||4 hour IRT ||8 hour IRT ||8 hour IRT |
* IRT in English is 24X7; business hours for all other languages
- How quickly will you resolve my incident?
The time it takes to troubleshoot and resolve incidents of course varies greatly on the specifics of the issue. We will work as fast as we can to get your problem resolved.
- How do I submit an incident?
Go to the Windows Azure Support site and click on Get Support. Alternatively, you can submit an incident from the Windows Azure Management Portal or the Windows Azure Accounts Center. To submit from the management portal, click on the icon on the top right corner, and then select Contact Microsoft Support.
To submit from the accounts center, click on a subscription and click on the Contact Microsoft Support button located on the right.
- How do I submit an incident if I cannot log into the portal?
Contact Global Customer Service. Support incidents can be created for existing customers with Windows Azure support subscriptions.
- Why is submitting incidents online a better experience for me?
We learned from our past experience that submitting support incidents online allows us to deliver deep technical expertise in the most effective and efficient manner possible. Due to the detailed nature of the incidents, it is much easier to provide relevant information online compared to reading this information over the phone. This model eliminates unproductive hold time for a simple, intuitive online process. As a result, customer problems are routed more quickly to the most qualified engineer.
- Can I request a call back while submitting an incident online?
Yes, this is a key benefit for customers with a Standard or Professional Direct support plan. If you need to speak to our support engineers, you can request us to call you by selecting "By Phone" as your preferred method of contact during your incident submission. Standard customers can request calls up to three times per month. Professional Direct customers can request an unlimited number of calls per month.
- Who can submit a support incident?
To submit a support incident about a particular Windows Azure subscription, you must be the Account Administrator, Service Administrator or Co-Administrator on the subscription.
- How do I add another person to be authorized to submit incidents about a particular Windows Azure subscription?
Instructions for adding a Co-Administrator can be found here.
- What if I need help submitting an incident?
If you are having difficulty navigating the process or filling out an incident, please follow the chat link and somebody from our support team will assist you. Note that they will not be able to help resolve your technical questions.
- How do I get support during a Service Incident (SI)?
During a SI, we provide frequent and timely updates to the Windows Azure Service Dashboard. This is the best way to receive the latest information. You can still submit an incident, and we will work with you to determine whether your issue is caused by the SI. If it is, we recommend that you use the Service Dashboard to check the latest status.
- Do I get support 24x7?
We provide support 24x7 in English for all severities and 24x7 in Japanese for severity A only. For all other languages, we provide support during local business hours. During non-business hours, you can request to have our English-speaking support engineer support you with a translation service, which is provided free of charge.
Support for Enterprise Agreement (EA) Customers
Support for MSDN, TechNet or MPN Users and Partners
Professional Direct Support
- What services will I get from the Professional Direct Delivery Manager (PDM)?
As part of your Professional Direct support benefits, you get access to our pool of Professional Direct Delivery Managers (PDMs). They are available Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm (local business hours) in English only and function as your Windows Azure Support advocates at Microsoft. This team provides:
- Escalation Management Services to help you get the traction you need on your most business critical support issues.
- Limited Advisory Services, including helping you navigate to the best resources available for building, managing and supporting your Windows Azure services.
- A monthly Windows Azure Optimization Report designed to help you reduce costs, maximize uptime and enhance user experience.
- How do I contact the Professional Direct Delivery Manager (PDM) team?
You can contact the PDM team via phone or email. Please see your "Getting Started with Professional Direct Support for Azure" packet for specific contact details in your region.
- What is the Windows Azure Optimization Report?
The Windows Azure Optimization Report is a best practice analyzer designed to help you identify areas where you can save money, improve availability of services and enhance end user experience. This report is run on a monthly basis.
- How do I submit an incident?
- How do I purchase Premier for Azure?
In order to purchase Premier for Azure you should contact your local Microsoft Account Manager. You can also contact email@example.com if you aren’t sure which Account Manager to contact.
- What if I already have a Premier contract?
Premier customers can leverage their existing Premier agreements for Windows Azure Support by going to Microsoft Premier Online. You should also contact your Technical Account Manager (TAM) to discuss options for best utilizing your existing Premier support agreement or rightsizing your Premier agreement to better suit your Windows Azure needs.
- What services will I get from the Application Development Manager (ADM)?
The ADM provides our customers access to a wide range of product and application development expertise to help software developers accelerate the development cycle and produce successful applications. The ADM also acts as the escalation manager to bring in appropriate technical expertise (primarily Customer Services and Support/PFE) to manage incidents to resolution. The ADM follows up to ensure either product improvement within Microsoft or appropriate development skills are built within the customer's development environment.
- What professional service workshops do you provide with Premier for Azure?
Several workshops are available for Premier customers to include migration assessments to help identify potential problems before they impact you, monthly alerts to identify underutilized billed services, access to experts who offer recommendations on cost effective Windows Azure architectures, workshops and training to help developers optimize cost, Windows Azure Application assessments, and process optimization services to help accelerate application deployment times and reduce overhead costs.
- What’s the Rapid Response option?
Rapid Response is the highest level of support available. It provides an initial response time of 15 minutes for Sev A incidents, and support is delivered by a dedicated team of Azure Support Engineers who work directly with the customer to understand your specific architecture and set of applications.
- Can partners use Premier Support for Partner (PSfP) contract for Azure?
Yes, Partners with Premier Support will now be able to extend their PSfP benefits for Windows Azure. PSfP Partners are able to use Azure support for their internal needs as well as to assist their customers.
- How do I raise a how-to question if I’m a Premier for Azure customer?
For Premier, you can raise your how-to questions by selecting Pro Advisory Services as a support topic on Microsoft Premier Online. You can also contact your Account Development Manager for mentoring and architectural design reviews and to learn about the variety of workshops to help you assess, plan and optimize your Windows Azure deployment.