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Senior Director at a computer software company with 501-1,000 employees
Vendor
Top 20
Reasonable pricing with intuitive UI but reaching support is difficult
Pros and Cons
  • "We have found the user interface to be intuitive. Microsoft is a master at UI."
  • "You don't get support from Microsoft very easily as compared to other solutions."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for cost reasons, for example, when a client's hardware refresh is coming and they don't want to incur the cost on the hardware. We also use it for capacity as, when they buy hardware, those are constrained by capacity. 

What is most valuable?

The analytics services are the most valuable aspect of the solution.

The product has many useful features on offer. 

We have found the user interface to be intuitive. Microsoft is a master at UI.

The stability is okay.

The solution has the potential to scale. 

We have found the pricing to be reasonable. 

What needs improvement?

You don't get support from Microsoft very easily as compared to other solutions. For example, AWS. If I reach out to AWS, their PDM team is very quick to respond. The Microsoft Azure team does not.

The downtime could be a bit better. AWS has less downtime.

The solution needs to scale as well as AWS, which scales much better.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for four to five years at this point. It's been a while. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is okay. There are no bugs or glitches. It's reliable. However, AWS seems to be a bit better.

In terms of downtime, if you look at the reporting side, if you look at the Gartner report, it shows that AWS experienced significantly fewer outages as compared to Azure.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

In my experience, I've seen AWS as a little bit more robust in terms of scalability and its features as compared to Azure. That said, Azure is improving every day. Still, AWS seems to be ahead in terms of scalability. 

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is not very responsive. They are quite slow. 

While the team may be capable, the processes set up around are really bad. If you have to reach out to someone to get technical support, it takes hours and hours of effort to get to them.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is neither easy nor difficult. It's somewhere between straightforward and complex. Usually, with our clients, we don't get straightforward projects. However, we can't say they are the most complex out there either.

What about the implementation team?

We tend to do setups for our clients.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is fair. It's not overly expensive.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Lately, I have been researching technical comparisons between Azure and AWS for SAP HANA 2.0 migration from on-premises to the cloud.

What other advice do I have?

We are Azure partners.

I'm mainly providing services to my customers, and therefore am not necessarily an end-user.

For the most part, I would recommend Azure. However, we cannot just recommend Azure blindly. Azure suits mostly the customers that are using the Microsoft suite of products. It brings your own licenses into the play so that you don't end up with another cloud. If you're using Microsoft products, then Azure is a straight fit for you. You should not evaluate any other cloud. However, if you're not using the Microsoft suite of products, if you're using MS Skills, running Solaris, and all of those things, then you have to evaluate which cloud is better.

I'd rate the solution at a seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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Head of Department at a transportation company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Easy to use, scales well, good interface, and provisioning a server is fast
Pros and Cons
  • "Provisioning a server is fast, taking only one or two minutes before it is ready."
  • "At this point, the latency is too high to use Azure in our production environment."

What is our primary use case?

We have a private cloud, but we are interested in having a hybrid cloud that includes Microsoft Azure. This use of it as an Infrastructure as a Service will help us to expand our scale using our hardware.

Primarily, we use Azure to test services and solutions that we want to use on the public cloud. Nothing in production is being used on Azure yet because of latency.

What is most valuable?

Azure is helpful when you want to set up a server, such as a Linux test server. For example, we can transfer our code to the test server and do a comparison.

This solution is easy to use. It has quite a good interface for things like provisioning a server.

Provisioning a server is fast, taking only one or two minutes before it is ready. In our private cloud, this process still takes longer.

What needs improvement?

At this point, the latency is too high to use Azure in our production environment.

I would like to see support for data streaming in the future because I understand that currently, data streaming is not there. It would work like Kafka does, in Microsoft Azure. If they can provide the Platform as a Service and Infrastructure as a Service, it will be better.

For example, if want to use Kafka, I should be able to purchase Microsoft Azure and then use my Kafka license. This would also give me support. Right now, using it requires first getting a server through Infrastructure as a Service, then getting a Kafka license, then installing the server in the cloud.

For how long have I used the solution?

We started using Microsoft Azure last year.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Azure is a scalable product. We are not using it extensively yet because we just started exploring it for use as a testing server. However, if we are satisfied with the security and issues with latency then we are going to set up performance tests.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have not had any issues with support. The interface is quite user-friendly, so we have not needed to contact them. I think that they do have assistance available for onboarding, or creating a server.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did evaluate other solutions but that is the job of another team in the company. I was only told that we also tried Google Cloud.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward. Microsoft Azure provides an easy interface to log in and create a server.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is flexible. Our company engaged in negotiations to get a better price, which resulted in a two-year contract.

It seems that the cost of using the service in the short term is definitely good. However, in the long-term it is different. The long-term cost is higher than if you set up the servers on-premises, which is something that could be improved through more competitive pricing.

What other advice do I have?

Our usage is rather limited right now but for what we use it for, the product is quite good and we are satisfied with the services. This is a product that I can recommend for anybody who does not want to invest a lot of money in their own hardware.

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Implementer
Learn what your peers think about Microsoft Azure. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2022.
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CTO at a computer software company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 20
Cloud-based, stable, simple to install, and with good advanced-level support
Pros and Cons
  • "It is easy to install."
  • "A good strategy would be to include a feature for integrating with external ecosystems."

What is our primary use case?

We are resellers. We use Microsoft to provide a service to our customers.

We offer SaaS software for the marketplace. 

We offer SaaS software for the B2B marketplace and provide solutions to our customers through public cloud infrastructure.

What is most valuable?

We have yet to explore this solution and what it has to offer because we are still in the transformation phase from Amazon to Azure.

What needs improvement?

It could be more open to external solutions.

Integration with other ecosystems would be beneficial. During this transitional period, this is our primary concern. For example, when we offer solutions to our customers, we must connect to their IT ecosystem, which we are unable to do in some cases.

A good strategy would be to include a feature for integrating with external ecosystems.

We would also like to improve the security.

For how long have I used the solution?

We switched from Amazon to Azure six months ago.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

In the short time that we have been using this solution, it appears to be stable enough for our needs.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We work with 50 companies that use this solution on a daily basis.

How are customer service and support?

We have no issues with the technical support. It's fine.

We needed to find someone who could help us. It depends on the support contract you have with Microsoft. 

The standard level of support was obviously insufficient for us, and we had to resort to a more advanced level of support for partners who had complex technical questions. This meant that there would be some additional support costs, but everything would be fine once you made that decision.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We use Auth0, which is an IAM-based solution.

We are using an identification solution provided by a cloud provider. We are based on Azure. We work with a Microsoft Azure infrastructure, and we use the solution provided by Microsoft to authenticate the users.

How was the initial setup?

It is easy to install.

It took us a few months to deploy. I did not take a lot of time to move to Azure but moving to another infrastructure using microservice takes longer.

We are coming from a moderate approach to installation and going for a modular one that is based on microservices.

To be able to manage the microservices, we made some modifications.

The length of time it took to complete the implementation was primarily due to changes we made to the infrastructure that was required for our customers.

What about the implementation team?

We have a dedicated team of ten people who will deploy and manage the infrastructure.

We have a separate Dev team for the application itself.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Customers pay for our software and use our solution as a service through monthly payments. They don't pay the licensing fee directly to Microsoft.

We provide a solution as a service to our customers. They pay us for our services, which are based on Microsoft.

What other advice do I have?

We would recommend this solution to others who are considering using it.

I would rate Microsoft Azure an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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Sarith Sasidharan
System Administrator at a government with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 5
Reliable, has easy provisioning, and offers good integration capabilities
Pros and Cons
  • "The solution offers very good upgrades and updates regularly."
  • "Technical support is lacking right now. It needs to be better."

What is our primary use case?

We're using the product as an infrastructure as a service. I'm basically using it to host services.

What is most valuable?

The product is very easy to provision. This is one of its most valuable aspects.

The solution offers pretty good integration capabilities at this time.

We've found the pricing to be pretty good so far. It's not too expensive.

The initial setup is very straightforward.

The stability is quite good. It's a reliable product.

We have found the scalability to be very good.

The solution offers very good upgrades and updates regularly.

What needs improvement?

The product can be a bit confusing at times. It's not well laid out. The interface, for example, can be a bit hard to figure out and they seem to be constantly changing things on us.

It's a rather new product and therefore lacks the maturity of other options. There is much they can do to add to it and to improve it. That may likely come with more time.

Up until two or so years ago, they weren't even accepting customer feedback on the solution. They've just started to do so, and they have given users a sense that improvements will be on the way sometime in the future.

Technical support is lacking right now. It needs to be better.

For how long have I used the solution?

We've been using the solution for more than 12 months at this point. It's been a while.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is very stable. There are no bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. The performance, overall, has been rather reliable for our organization.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The product has the capability to expand. If a company needs to scale it, it can do so. It's not a problem.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support needs to be better. We are not quite satisfied with their level of support. They need to be more responsive to use when we have queries. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We actually use Amazon as well. We did use it before, however, we are also still using it. We use both Azure and Amazon at this time.

How was the initial setup?

We did not find the initial setup to be too complex. It's pretty straightforward. A company should be able to handle the deployment without too many issues.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is decent. We don't find that they are charging too much. It's pretty fair.

What other advice do I have?

As a cloud deployment, the solution is constantly updating itself, therefore we always have access to the latest release.

We have about 300 to 400 users on it currently. It's a business unit with various users of different job descriptions.

We are planning to increase the usage in the future.

I'm not sure if the company will use this solution for the long term or if they are considering trying something new. That is yet to be determined.

Overall, I would rate the solution at a nine out of ten. We're mostly quite happy with it in general.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
IT Technical Manager
Real User
Technical simplicity in terms of implementation; flexible and scalable
Pros and Cons
  • "Provides a high level of availability and 99% uptime."
  • "Lacks flexibility in terms of storage or resource allocation."

What is our primary use case?

We are customers of Microsoft and I'm the IT technical manager. 

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature for me is the high level of availability and the 99% uptime of the system. I also appreciate the technical simplicity of the system in terms of implementation.

What needs improvement?

I'm currently based in the Philippines and the availability of services locally could be improved. Technically speaking, I'd like to see more flexibility in terms of storage or resource allocation. Resourcing is currently quite fixed so that if you want to move between level two and level three resources, or customize resources, you can't do that. The discrepancy in terms of costing is around $200. If they improved flexibility for selecting resources it would be easier for us to get the costing approved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for around two years. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable, one of the most reliable in the Philippines. The downside is that currently all the services are outside the country. Singapore and Hong Kong provide the closest service but we have laws that prohibit certain amounts of data residing in other countries. None of that affects stability. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

One of the key takes from using cloud services is scalability and flexibility. If a company hits some roadblocks financially, they can reduce infrastructure and also reduce what they use in the cloud lowering the cost. 

How are customer service and technical support?

I've had several outages or major issues and I've had good experience with technical support. They resolved the problems in less than a day. The only downside is that in the Philippines you're dealing with the vendor and not Microsoft direct. I have two steps of support; if the vendor can't provide the support, then they escalate to Microsoft. 

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is quite simple. We currently have 20 users on the infrastructure side in addition to 20+ developers.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We have difficulty in getting the costing approved. We pay for a virtual machine and the resources currently implemented there, then we need a license from Microsoft Windows OS and the database itself. In our latest license purchase, the manager approved a monthly fee of around $2,000 for the resources we use. If you're going to the cloud, that's currently included in the cost and will be less if you have the software assurance from Microsoft; on-prem is more expensive.

What other advice do I have?

The big takeaway on this product is the high availability of the system on cloud and reduction of on-prem costing. There are no concerns about the electrical doing some redundancy in between, cooling, purchasing, procurement of IT equipment. Instead of budgeting based on CAPEX, we're doing it from an OPEX point of view. One of the key takes for moving to the cloud is the cost. You can leverage with the cloud and let go of some things required to maintain a system on-prem, the kinds of things that alleviate some complexity in doing maintenance of the system. The solution is suitable for any size company. 

I highly recommend Microsoft Azure. Everyone knows Microsoft so the learning curve is easier. I rate the solution nine out of 10. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Solution Architect at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 5
Good storage and elasticity with reasonable pricing on offer
Pros and Cons
  • "The pricing is quite good, and it is designed as pay-per-use."
  • "Maybe Microsoft could improve its monitoring around the networking."

What is our primary use case?

I use Microsoft Azure for different clients. I have different workloads or different architecture in Azure.

The most common use case is for migrations from on-premise to cloud. The principal solution is for a virtual machine, storage, and networking. 

What is most valuable?

The principal features that I use include computing, networking, and storage.

The elasticity within the cloud is great for clients to complete their pre-determined goals.

The cost is pretty good. They have a pay-per-use way of dealing with licensing that is very attractive. Migrating to the cloud becomes very attractive due to this.

The solution can scale.

Stability has been good.

What needs improvement?

Maybe Microsoft could improve its monitoring around the networking.

Clarity on the cost of the things could be better in some cases. For example, it's difficult to do a report with the cost of the things in Azure. Their calculator to estimate the cost needs to improve in terms of the estimation they provide.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have five years of experience with this product.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There are some products that have good stability and virtual machines - depending on your setup and configuration - are very good. With Microsoft Azure, it's very rare that I even have a problem with it. In any solution, there's always some form of issue, however, with this, it's less common.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I've found the scalability to be quite good. 

I have worked with clients that have 300 users or more, however, sometimes with a smaller client they will have maybe 60 or 100 users.

How are customer service and support?

Technical support is very good, however, it depends on the problem. There are some problems that originate with the client itself that Microsoft, naturally, couldn't necessarily resolve due to the origin of the problem. However, in general, I haven't had any problems with the support with Microsoft. They are helpful and responsive. 

How was the initial setup?

Whether the initial setup is straightforward or complex depends on the client. There are some products that are more complex to set up. However, for me, it's easy to deploy different features or different products. It's easier compared to on-premise deployments.

Deployments can be two to three months for an enterprise.

For maintenance, you need a good team with good skills in Microsoft Azure, especially in the cloud due to the fact that it's a bit different. Things are different in the cloud compared with on-premise. 

What about the implementation team?

I am able to deploy the solution for clients. 

I work with a team in my company. When, for example, we need help or support from Microsoft, we have a contact with the architect of this provider to resolve some issue or some problem that we have in the cloud.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is quite good, and it is designed as pay-per-use.

What other advice do I have?

We are partners with Microsoft.

I am an architect, cloud architect, and I work in design solutions and implementing solutions in the cloud.

I'd rate the product at an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Jan Stander
Owner at Latreia Technologies
Real User
Top 20
Functional pricing calculator, reliable, and excellent customer service
Pros and Cons
  • "We have found the most valuable feature to be the pricing calculator."
  • "The solution could be easier to use. However, when comparing it to AWS it is a bit easier."

What is our primary use case?

We have developed for our customers a website where they do onsite inspections of heavy moving equipment. They have the ability to build reports that are all web-based now and by clicking a button it goes out to their customers. This company is now starting to roll it out. They started in Zimbabwe, Zambia, and South Africa. They are currently expanding the system to Brazil and Australia. We had to move from on-premise solutions to a cloud-based system and this what we are using Azure for.

What is most valuable?

We have found the most valuable feature to be the pricing calculator.

What needs improvement?

The solution could be easier to use. However, when comparing it to AWS it is a bit easier.

In an upcoming release, the interface could improve.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for approximately two months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Azure is reliable. I am doing other work for another company where I do not host it in Azure myself, but they have a U-systems running on Azure and it is operating all over the world. There are times when it can slow down a little but most of the time, it runs very smoothly.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have two people using this solution in my organization.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have one experience calling the technical support for Azure and the response was almost immediate, they are very good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have used AWS previously. Although AWS might be cheaper in some instances, I found it has an even worse configuration. You have to configure every detail, whereas with Azure it easier.

How was the initial setup?

The installation was straightforward. Once you have a Microsoft ID everything else just falls into place.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I am currently on a pay-as-you-go subscription and my customers are going to be on a three-year contract. For what is offered in the three-year package it is quite reasonably priced. However, if I was to run it in my office from my own service it would be cheaper but the risk is too high. Here in South Africa, we have something called load shedding where the electricity is turned off for periods of time to regulate to load of the electricity being used. It can go off for five to six hours causing the batteries in the cell towers and fiber exchanges to start dropping and then the customers are offline.

This is why I have to move to a cloud platform that has generators, redundancy on fiber connections, and other mechanisms in place. It creates a lot of challenges for us.

Microsoft has two data centers in South Africa, one in Johannesburg and one in Cape Town. We will most likely be balancing between South Africa, Europe, and maybe even have a service in Australia.

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to do their research before they purchase any platform service. Everything could look fine on the surface but if you do not understand things, such as DPUs and flexible databases, you can run into some difficulties.

I rate Microsoft Azure an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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IT Senior Consultant and trainer at a tech vendor with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 5
Simple to use, easy to configure, and scalable
Pros and Cons
  • "The solution is very simple to use. It has a lot of great practical applications we really appreciate."
  • "The solution could use mutual segmentation for servers. It would be ideal if you could constitute something like five or 15 groups among the groups of different computers inside Azure."

What is our primary use case?

I primarily use Microsoft Azure for application development in our development environment.

What is most valuable?

The solution is pretty dynamic.

We prefer that we can configure our environment very quickly. 

We can add some notes if we need to. The testing capabilities are great. We can use the load balancing environment, and we can test a lot of different components from an infrastructure point of view. We can also test different scenarios within the application. 

The solution is very simple to use. It has a lot of great practical applications we really appreciate.

What needs improvement?

The licensing model is not ideal. It is not very useful in predicting actual costs. Sometimes we found that we could not accurately predict how much specific products will cost the company in the future. Just now, for example, we want to start using Log Analytics for Office 365, however, we don't know the final price. It's inconvenient for us as we cannot predict the budget and it puts off making a decision. For Microsoft, it's very disadvantagous.

The solution could use mutual segmentation for servers. It would be ideal if you could constitute something like five or 15 groups among the groups of different computers inside Azure. If you could get something like logical groups of servers outside the mutual servers, it would be an improvement. 

Sometimes we want to start and do a penetration test. If, for example, we're planning new security scanning for our customers. You have to inform Microsoft that you want to start a penetration test. If you have regular scans Microsoft should allow regular scanning, without having to plan and to ask for approval from the Microsoft side every time. When it's meant to be a regular occurrence, it's very inconvenient for us.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is pretty good. It doesn't cause bottlenecks or any other major issues for us. We find it to be reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

While we can dynamically add servers according to the user request, it's not profitable for us. Currently, it is possible to scale the solution. It just costs more to do so.

How are customer service and technical support?

We are not so satisfied with technical support right now. Sometimes they cannot help us. We had problems with licensing and with the invoicing and so on and so on. Sometimes it's not very easy to explain the problems, the technical or non-technical, and they can't really assist us effectively.

In one instance, we had an issue with anti-spam on the service. We were trying to figure out why certain emails were being marked as spam. It took far too long to get to the bottom of the cause.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It's hard to gauge what the pricing will be, so It's hard to plan with the solution. The licensing needs to be more transparent and obvious.

What other advice do I have?

We're simply Microsoft customers. We don't have a business relationship with the company.

Overall, I would rate the solution eight out of ten. We're mostly happy with it, although we would prefer if pricing was more transparent.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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