Azure spending notifications for customers unavailable until March, Microsoft warns
Microsoft has warned Azure customers that a feature which enables cloud spending notifications will be unavailable until mid-March due to a ‘technical problem’.
In an advisory to its partner community, the firm revealed that customers using Azure Savings Plans, which allow users to set budgets and track real-time usage, will not receive spending notifications.
“Due to a technical problem with our internal processing system, if you bought Azure Savings Plans for your customers, even if you set budgets, you temporarily won’t get Azure spending notifications,” the company said.
“That means you won’t know how much your customers spend on Azure in real time. Instead, you’ll have to keep track of how and how much your customers use Azure resources.”
How Azure Savings Plans work
Azure Savings Plans allow customers to purchase cloud computing services through partners at a lower rate based on consumption.
Users on the plan agree to spend a “fixed hourly amount on compute services” and can choose to pay a one-time fee or make monthly payments.
Microsoft has positioned the savings plan as a way for businesses to access compute services in a flexible manner with reduced costs, and claims that users can save “up to 65%” on selected services.
There is a caveat, however. Users that exceed their expected consumption are charged for additional usage on a pay-as-you-go basis.
With notifications and real-time tracking now unavailable, this means that businesses could unknowingly exceed their expected consumption levels and incur additional fees.
This ‘technical problem’ comes as businesses globally are contending with rising cloud computing costs and tightening budgets, and raises concerns about the risk of overspending.
“Not getting those notifications could make it difficult for you to manage Azure resources for your customers because you won’t be able to see how much is being spent in real time,” Microsoft warned.
“We’re working hard to fix this problem and get spending alerts back as soon as possible. In the meantime, we encourage you to think of other ways to keep track of your customers’ usage on Azure.”
Recommended steps to monitor usage
Microsoft’s recommended steps to ensure that customers keep tabs on usage include manually monitoring Azure usage and costs.
“Check unbilled daily rated usage data regularly to ensure that you know how much your customers are spending on Azure resources,” the firm recommended.
Customers that encounter “abnormal usage” are advised to address this immediately to avoid incurring additional fees.
“You can access the data using APIs either synchronously or asynchronously, but we recommend that you use the asynchronous method for the fastest response.”
The company also advised customers to use the Azure portal to set up budgets to mitigate the risk of overuse until notifications are restored.
Ⓒ Future Publishing