Understand Your Bill for Windows Azure
The charges for Windows Azure subscriptions vary by rate plan. Some rate plans, such as Windows Azure MSDN, include an amount of service each month at no charge.
For our monetary commitment rate plans, an unused commitment balance at the end of a billing month will be rolled over as a credit to future billing months until the end of your offer term. At the end of the term or upon cancelation during the term, any unused commitment balance will be forfeited.
Some rate plans do not include any base units or an amount included with the offer. For these rate plans, you are charged for all of your monthly consumption.
For more information about consumption, usage, and rate plans, see the Windows Azure Purchase Options page.
This topic helps you with the following tasks when reading your bill.
View or Download a Bill for Windows Azure
In the Windows Azure Billing Portal you can view current and download past bills.
To view or download a bill:
- Sign in to the Billing Portal using your Windows Live ID.
On the Home page, click on a subscription to view details and usage.
Click Billing History.
The Billing History section lists your statements for the last six billing periods plus the current unbilled period. The statement for the current period is an estimate of your charges as of the time the estimate was generated. This information is only updated daily and may not include all of your usage incurred to date. Your monthly bill may differ from this estimate.
Click View Current Statement to view an estimate of your charges as of the time the estimate was generated. This information is only updated daily and may not include all of your usage incurred to date. Your monthly bill may differ from this estimate.
Click Download Invoice to view a copy of your previous bill.
Below are sample invoices of the Windows Azure MSDN Visual Studio Ultimate, 6-Month Plan and 6-Month Plan Prepaid offers.
|Offer Name||Offer Type||Includes free services||Download|
|Windows Azure MSDN –Visual Studio Ultimate ||Pay-As-You-Go ||Yes* ||Sample file |
|6-Month Plan ||Monetary Commitment ||No ||Sample file |
|6-Month Plan (Prepaid) ||Monetary Commitment ||No ||Sample file |
*Any unused amounts cannot be carried over to the next billing cycle.
Understand the Balances, Payments & Credits
The Balances, Payments & Credits section of the bill summarizes transactions since your last bill.
Previous balance is the total amount due on your last bill.
Payments are your total payments applied to your last bill.
Post Bill and AR Adjustments
Post bill and AR adjustments are total credits applied to your account since your last bill.
Understand the Current Charges
The Current Charges section of the bill contains details about your monthly charges. The links are organized into the following subsections.
Recurring charges are the flat monthly charges for your base units if you purchased an offer that includes an amount of service each month at no charge. These recurring charges are billed in advance for your next month’s service. If your subscription does not include base units, you will not have any recurring charges and this section will not display.
Commitment charges are flat monthly charges of your commitment amount if you purchased a 6 or 12 month commitment offer. If you elected to pay for your entire commitment up front, then commitment charges represent the entire commitment amount for a 6 or 12 month prepaid commitment offer. The commitment charges are billed in advance for your next month’s service. The service dates are the start and end dates of your commitment period.
Discounts show the monetary value of the discount applied to your current bill.
Other Products & Services
This line item is not applicable to Windows Azure bills.
Miscellaneous adjustments are miscellaneous credits applied to your current bill.
Total Pre-Bill Adjustments
Total pre-bill adjustments are the total credits applied to your current bill.
Usage charges are monthly charges for the usage that surpasses the amount included with your offer. You are billed in arrears for your past month’s usage. For subscriptions that have an amount included in the offer, this is also known as overage.
When you view a list of usage charges in your invoice, the following columns display the details of what you are being billed for:
Identifies the top-level service for which this usage belongs. Services include:
- Access Control
- All Services
- Cloud Services
- Data Management
- Database Storage
- Service Bus
- SQL Database
- SQL Reporting
- Web Sites
The service of “All Services” is utilized for any monthly recurring fees for our commitment offers and for non-CDN data transfers that you incur. CDN data transfers are priced separately and are included under the “CDN” service. If you need a breakdown of your usage for data transfers, our daily usage reports have a separate Service field in which you can obtain this information (please refer to the Daily Usage section for more information).
Information on the other services are posted on the pricing details page.
Utilized primarily to further break down Service for the following Windows Azure services:
|Cache ||128MB |
|Cache ||256MB |
|Cache ||512MB |
|Cache ||1GB |
|Cache ||2GB |
|Cache ||4GB |
|Storage ||Geo Redundant |
|Storage ||Locally Redundant |
|SQL Database ||Business Edition |
|SQL Database ||Web Edition |
The Service Type field for Cache indicates the cache size that has been provisioned. For Storage, the Service Type field indicates the level of redundancy of your storage account. Geo redundancy is the default option where data is stored in two sub-regions within the same region. For SQL Azure database, the Service Type field indicates whether you have utilized a Business Edition or Web Edition database.
Identifies the unit of measure for the resource being consumed. Use the following links to find a description of each resource:
|Resource||Location of Description|
|Compute Hours ||See Cloud Services pricing details |
|Data Transfer GB (except for CDN) ||See Data Transfers pricing details |
|Data Transfer (CDN) ||See the CDN subsection of Caching pricing details |
|Database Units, Database Units (in10s) ||See the SQL Database subsection of Data Management pricing details |
|Messages (in 100,000s) ||See the Service Bus subsection of Messaging pricing details |
|Relay Hours (in 100s) ||See the Service Bus subsection of Messaging pricing details |
|Storage (GB/month) ||See Storage pricing details |
|Storage Transactions (in 10,000s) ||See Storage pricing details |
|Web Sites ||See Web Sites pricing details |
|SQL Reporting Hours ||See SQL Reporting pricing details |
|Gateway Hours ||See the Virtual Network subsection of Networking pricing details |
|Cache Memory (MB/month) ||See the Shared Caching (Managed Service) subsection of Caching pricing details |
|Media Data Processed (GB) ||See the Media Services Encoding subsection of Media pricing details |
|Encoding Reserved Units ||See the Media Services Encoding Reserved Unit subsection of Media pricing details |
|On-Demand Streaming Reserved Units ||See the Media Services On-Demand Streaming subsection of Media pricing details |
|CDN SSL Transactions (in 10,000s) ||See the CDN subsection of Caching pricing details |
|CDN Transactions (in 10,000s) ||See the CDN subsection of Caching pricing details |
Region maps to sub regions which the usage applies and primarily relates to data transfers (excluding CDN), since these rates can vary by region. The mapping for Zone 1 and 2 regions to sub regions is shown below:
|Zone 1 ||Northern Europe |
North Central US
South Central US
|Zone 2 ||East Asia |
Region for CDN charges map to the data center location where the traffic was served.
|Zone 1 ||North America |
|Zone 2 ||Asia Pacific |
Middle East / Africad
Contains the amount of the resource that has been consumed during the billing period.
Identifies the amount that is included each month with your offer. For offers that include an amount of service each month at no charge, this represents your base units. For example, if you purchased two base units for an offer that included 750 compute hours per base unit, you would have 1,500 hours included each month with your offer.
If the Consumed amount exceeds the Included amount, this column displays the difference. You are billed for this amount. For pay-as-you-go offers with no amount included with the offer, this total will be the same as the Consumed quantity.
Rate / Disctounted Rate
Rate displays the rate you are charged per billable unit.
Disctounted Rate displays the rate you are charged per billable unit if you purchased a 6 or 12 month monetary commitment offer.
Displays the result of multiplying the Billable column by the Rate column. If the Consumed amount does not exceed the Included amount, there will be no charge in this column.
Analyze Daily Usage Data
Depending on your usage, there can be thousands of rows of daily usage data. If you want to analyze this data, you can export the data to a comma-separated variable file (CSV), which can then be viewed in Microsoft Office Excel and other programs.
Click Download Usage to export daily usage data for the current billing period to a comma-separated variable file (CSV), which can then be viewed in Microsoft Office Excel and other programs.
For your reference, you can download a sample CSV file.
In the CSV file, the items are broken down to display a list of how much of each resource was consumed within the current billing period.
The following columns display details that affect the rates at the beginning of the billing period:
|Billing Period ||The billing period when the resource was consumed. |
|Name ||Identifies the name of the service that was used. |
|Type ||In some cases, a Windows Azure service may be further defined by type in this column, which can affect the rate. |
|Resource ||Identifies the type of resource that has been consumed. For example, data transfer, compute hours, and storage transactions are resource types. |
|Region ||Identifies the location of the data center for certain services that are priced based on data center location (e.g., data transfers). |
|SKU ||Identifies the unique system identifier for each Windows Azure resource. |
|Consumed ||Contains the amount of the resource that has been consumed for that day. |
|Included ||Contains the amount of the resource that is included at no charge in your current billing period. |
|Billable ||Contains the amount of the resource that is billable in your current billing period. |
|Within Commitment ||Contains the resource charges that are decremented from your commitment amount associated with your 6 or 12 month offer. Note that your resource charges are decremented from your commitment amount in chronological order. |
|Currency ||Identifies the currency reflected in your current billing period. |
|Overage ||Contains the resource charges that exceed your commitment amount associated with your 6 or 12 month offer. |
|Commitment Rate ||Contains the commitment rate based on your total commitment amount associated with your 6 or 12 month offer. |
|Rate ||Contains the Pay-As-You-Go rate for the resource. |
|Value ||Contains the total monetary amount of the resource consumed. |
Please refer to the detail descriptions of the above columns in the Usage Charges section for complete explanations of these columns.
The following columns contain additional information that may be helpful. Depending on the resource, some of these columns may be empty.
For services where this is applicable and populated, this column identifies the location of a data center within the region. The current sub regions include the following:
- East Asia
- South East Asia
- North Europe
- Western Europe
- North Central US
- South Central US
This column is utilized to track the individual Windows Azure platform service that may not be specifically identified in the Name column. For example, data transfers are reported as "Windows Azure Platform – All Services" in the Name column. This Service column will indicate which specific service the usage pertains.
Where applicable, this column identifies the component that is associated with the resource that is being consumed. For hosted compute services for example, this column reports the name of the hosted service for which the usage pertains and, within brackets, the label you specified for the production or staging environments. For databases, storage accounts and other resources, it generally indicates the name you specified for these resources when you created them.
Service Info 1
This column is currently utilized to identify the cache size or the type of Virtual Machine that has been provisioned.
- 128 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
- 256 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
- 512 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
- 1024 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
- 2048 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
- 4096 MB CacheMemorySize For 1 Day(s)
Service Info 2
This column is reserved for future use.
This column is utilized to further define the following resources:
|Compute Hours ||ComputeXSmall |
|Data Transfer (except for CDN) ||External Data Transfer |
|Database Units ||Web |
|Database Units (in10s) ||Business |
|CDN SSL Transactions (in 10,000s) ||https |
|CDN Transactions (in 10,000s) ||http |
|SQL Reporting ||Reporting Instance Hours |
|Web Sites ||Web Process |
|Compute Hours ||Compute Instance |
|Encoding Data Processed (GB) ||InputProcessed |
|Cache ||128MB |
For compute hours, this field indicates what size compute instance was deployed.