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In this course, I’ll start by explaining the purpose of Azure Service Level Agreements (or SLAs) and some of the details they contain. Then I’ll cover some of the actions that impact SLAs. Finally, I’ll go over the lifecycle of Azure services, from public preview to retirement.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the purpose of Azure Service Level Agreements (or SLAs) and what they contain 
  • Understand actions that can impact SLAs in both positive and negative ways
  • Understand Azure service lifecycle stages, including preview, general availability, and retirement

Intended Audience

  • Anyone who is responsible for tracking or maintaining service levels on Azure implementations



Let’s do a quick review of what you’ve learned.

An Azure Service Level Agreement tells you what level of reliability or performance you can expect from a given service and how you’ll be compensated if Microsoft doesn’t meet that level. Typically, an SLA promises a certain level of availability or uptime, although it can also include guarantees for other metrics, such as throughput, consistency, and latency.

Performance metrics are calculated on a monthly basis. If a service fails to meet its SLA guarantee, then you can submit a claim. If Microsoft approves your claim, then you’ll receive a credit on your monthly bill. One of the best ways to track outages is to use Azure Service Health.

There are no SLAs for free services. SLAs do not apply when the customer causes a guarantee to not be met. Many SLAs have different guarantees depending on how the service is configured. For example, many services offer better guarantees if you use a redundant configuration.

Azure services go through a predictable lifecycle, starting with a preview release, then becoming generally available, then being retired. You can find announcements about preview services on the Azure updates page.

There are two types of previews: public and private. A feature or service that’s in private preview can only be accessed if you register as a test user first. You can access a preview version of the Azure portal itself at

Preview services don’t provide a service level agreement. Because of this, preview services are sometimes free or priced at a lower cost than usual.

The Modern Lifecycle Policy says that Microsoft will give at least 12 months’ notice before ending support for a service. 

That’s all for now. Please give this course a rating, and if you have any questions or comments, please let us know. Thanks!


About the Author
Learning Paths

Guy launched his first training website in 1995 and he's been helping people learn IT technologies ever since. He has been a sysadmin, instructor, sales engineer, IT manager, and entrepreneur. In his most recent venture, he founded and led a cloud-based training infrastructure company that provided virtual labs for some of the largest software vendors in the world. Guy’s passion is making complex technology easy to understand. His activities outside of work have included riding an elephant and skydiving (although not at the same time).

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