Thursday, September 18, 2014

Hidden costs associated with hosting on Windows Azure

If you currently host content such as Virtual Machines on Windows Azure, you may know that Microsoft has created a very nice self-service portal to manage most of the activities and operations that are required for working with Windows Azure.

However, what do you do if something does not work as expected (gasp!  a defect/bug???)

Well, even though Microsoft heavily advertises the free benefit of hosting in the Windows Azure cloud as part of your MSDN Subscription, what you may NOT know is that there is absolutely NO TECHNICAL SUPPORT!  Yup, you read that correctly!!

If something goes wrong with anything you are doing in the Windows Azure cloud, you are left to try and figure things out yourself or try and post a question on the Community Forums and hope that you get an answer.

So, what do you do if you want Technical Support?  Well, Microsoft says you have to pay for it!

The lowest tier of support is pretty affordable (just $29/month), but that still comes out to $360/year and "Developer" support may not provide an acceptable level of support for your business/company which means that you are looking at the next tier of support which is a whopping $300/month!!!!  Whoa!!

So, even though Windows Azure is a very enticing option, if you need Technical Support for content that you host in the Windows Azure cloud, you will now know the price of getting that support.

For many organizations/companies, Windows Azure may still remain just an afterthought when it comes to affordable cloud hosting and other hosting providers such as RackSpace may still seem much more viable solutions comparatively.

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