General Availability of Capacity Reservations

Microsoft announce the General Availability of Capacity Reservations for virtual machines.

A Capacity Reservation is linked to a specific virtual machine type running in a specific Azure data centre and ensures that there is always capacity available when you want to run a virtual machine of that type in that data centre.

They are priced the same as the Pay-As-You-Go prices for the VM, and if you have a matching Reserved Instance, that will automatically be applied to cover the charges of the Capacity Reservation.

Find the announcement here: https://bit.ly/3kiL53J, and a video explaining this new option here: https://bit.ly/3LFqVNr.

Windows Server Subscriptions for Azure Stack HCI

Azure Stack HCI is a virtualisation platform for Windows and Linux virtual machines, and customers have a choice as to how they license the Windows part of the VMs. Firstly, they can bring their own licences, and there’s no Software Assurance required when Azure Stack HCI is running as an on-premises solution dedicated to the customer.

From 1 April 2022 there’s a new option with the launch of special Windows Server Subscriptions specifically to license the guest (VM) operating systems on Azure Stack HCI. As is usual with Windows Server, you license at the physical core level, and a Windows Server Subscription costs $23.30 per physical core per month, with the first 60 days free.

Find the announcement here: https://bit.ly/3LrZXZd, and a useful page comparing the Windows Server licensing options for Azure Stack HCI here: https://bit.ly/3EW9zcz.

Power Platform Licensing Guide

There’s an updated (April 2022) Power Platform Licensing Guide. The main addition is a new table on page 24 showing how AI Builder credits are consumed by the different capabilities. There’s also confirmation added on page 20 that although Power Virtual Agents chat sessions are unlimited per tenant per month, a limit of 10 sessions per user per 24 hours across all bots in a tenant is enforced.

Find this updated guide here: https://bit.ly/3LFWzda.

Dynamics 365 Licensing Guide

There’s an updated (April 2022) Dynamics 365 Licensing Guide. There are just minor edits including the updating of some security role names and descriptions, and the name change of the Project Resource Hub to the Project Operations Team Members app.

There’s a full change log on page 60, and you can find the updated guide here: https://bit.ly/3vcbV2z.

Update on SA 24×7 Problem Resolution Support benefit

Microsoft announce that they will fully retire the 24×7 Problem Resolution Support SA benefit effective 1 February, 2023. Previously, the plan had been to retire the benefit and replace it with as-needed support for customers with SA spend of more than £250,000, but now customers will need a Unified Support contract or pay for supports on a per-incident basis via Microsoft Professional Support.

Find the announcement, and some links to learn more about the different support options, here: https://bit.ly/3EsEc93.

Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare

Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare adds cloud services to support healthcare scenarios for customers already licensed for Microsoft 365 and/or Dynamics 365.

At its launch in November 2020 it was licensed via User SLs, but from 1 April, 2022 it will move to a per tenant licensing model costing $20,000 per month.

Find a useful datasheet here: https://bit.ly/3DNDPFU, and information on how to transition to tenant-based licensing here: https://bit.ly/3NT0pl3.

Office 365 and Microsoft 365 nonprofit pricing changes

Microsoft announce that there will be per user per month price increases for the following nonprofit products from 1 September, 2022:

  • Office 365 E1 (up to $2.50 from $2)
  • Office 365 E3 (up to $5.75 from $4.50)
  • Office 365 E5 (up to $15.20 from $14)
  • Microsoft 365 E3 (up to $9 from $8)
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium (up to $5.50 from $5)

Find the Microsoft FAQ here: https://bit.ly/3NVg3MW.

Microsoft 365 Business offer for Google legacy G Suite customers

Customers with Google’s G Suite legacy free edition must move to a paid Google Workspace subscription from 1 May, 2022.

Alternatively, they can avail of a new Microsoft offer which allows them to purchase a 12-month Microsoft 365 Business Basic, Business Standard, or Business Premium subscription with a 60% discount, simply by confirming their eligibility with a support agent at this site: https://bit.ly/3Dm73eM.

You can find the announcement here: https://bit.ly/3DqnV3X