Many of the workshops & labs require a working Azure subscription. Ensure that you have one of the following options enabled and verified.

  • Visual Studio Subscription (aka MSDN Subscription)
  • Internal Usage Rights
  • Azure Free
  • Azure Pass

Visual Studio Subscription

The Visual Studio Enterprise subscription is the replacement for MSDN subscriptions, and should only be used for test/dev scenarios. A Microsoft partner with the Cloud Platform competency receives a number of Visual Studio 2017 Enterprise with MSDN subscriptions:

Cloud Platform Competency Visual Studio Subscriptions
Silver 10
Gold 35

The Global Administrator for the Partner Membership Center can assign the subscription under Requirements & Assets -> Assign Privileges, as per the competency partner section of the support page.

Visual Studio Enterprise subscribers are entitled to $150 of Azure credits per month. To activate the benefit:

No credit card is required for the activation. Your subscription will be disabled if you exceed the $150/mth limit, although it will be re-enabled the following month if usage is reduced.

Internal Usage Rights

Microsoft Cloud Platform partners are also entitled to internal usage rights Azure credits.

Cloud Platform Competency Internal Usage Rights
Silver $6,100
Gold $12,100

The internal usage rights (IUR) credits may be used for

  • Internal business use
  • Customer demos
  • Internal development and testing
  • Internal training for employees and customers

The internal usage rights may be activated at

Azure Free Account

An Azure Free account may be created. The account provides £150 of free credit for the first 30 days, with free access to some of the most popular products for 12 months before defaulting to more than 25 always free products.

Visit to set up the account.

Credit card details need to be provided for identity verification, but the spending limit is set to $0 to ensure that it remains free. The spending limit may be changed if the account is going to be used ongoing.

Note that some of the services under a trial licence will be restricted, e.g. CPU quotas, and therefore an Azure Free account is not appropriate for some of the larger workshops such as Virtual Data Centre.

The FAQ includes details of the included services and quotas.

Azure Pass

If you are a partner working with Microsoft’s One Commercial Partner group and the session is being hosted by a Cloud Solution Architect (CSA), then they may provide you with an Azure Pass subscription.

  • Open a private browser session
  • Go to and create a clean new Microsoft account in format
  • Go to
  • Sign in using your new ID
  • Follow the instructions to redeem the code and activate your Azure Pass

Common Pitfalls to Avoid

  • When redeeming an Azure Pass - Do not use a work/company email address Many companies have their Azure AD tenant set up preventing normal users write access to the directory and therefore you cannot register apps, create service principals, users or groups - this will prevent you from completing many of the labs & workshops here
  • Redeeming an Azure Pass code against an email address previously used for a trial will succeed, but the activation will fail
  • Free Trial accounts may have a CPU quota that is insufficient for the lab environment deployment to successfully complete


Once the account is enabled, prove that it is working correctly by

  • logging into the portal at
  • create a Resource Group called ‘Azure101IaaS’ in West Europe

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