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SP
IT Systems Administrator at a transportation company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 5
Stable, knowledgeable support, but the support subscription model needs improvement

Pros and Cons

  • "Being cloud-based saves the provisioning aspect of an on-premises solution."
  • "The support subscription models need improvement."

What is our primary use case?

We use Microsoft Azure for our IDB. That is our primary use, but we also have a certain degree of MDM through Microsoft.

What is most valuable?

It does what it is supposed to do, and what we expected of it. That's the key benefit. Being cloud-based saves the provisioning aspect of an on-premises solution.

What needs improvement?

The support subscription models need improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Microsoft Azure for a couple of years.

We are using the latest version.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Microsoft Azure is a stable solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

As far as we have expanded it, it is scalable. It's a startup company, we haven't scaled it to a significant number of people yet.

We have between 100 and 150 people in our organization who use Microsoft Azure.

I don't think that we will expand our usage at the moment.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have contacted technical support on one occasion. My biggest issue with the technical support of Microsoft is when we had an issue that was product-related and it was difficult to get support on the subscription level we were on. In order to try to get support, we were told that we needed to upgrade. It was quite frustrating that an issue with their product required an upgrade to get serviced when it was a failure that they were responsible for.

It's not a question of knowledge, the knowledge was there. Access to that knowledge and the subscription model they were trying to put in place was the issue.

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

I used to work for Oracle. My previous experience was with Oracle Enterprise Manager.

How was the initial setup?

I wasn't present or involved at the time of installation. I came along later. I started with the company after that.

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

Licensing fees are paid monthly.

What other advice do I have?

We are currently in the process of deploying Zabbix to cover our monitoring needs. We have used other monitoring products which come with certain components.

From my point of view, it would depend on the type of solution and everything they were trying to encompass. In our case, it made sense to go with Azure. I think that for other companies, I would recommend that it's a good solution, but that depends on what problem you are trying to solve. It also depends on what infrastructure is already in place, and whether you want to have a lot of disparate systems communicating, or whether you want to consolidate that to a specific vendor. But for the purposes of what we needed Azure to do, it does the job. However, we don't use all of the MS Apps functionality.

It does the job, but it doesn't wow me. I am pretty happy with it. I don't get overly excited about it, but I am not disappointed with it. I would rate Microsoft Azure a six out of ten.

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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Igor Pigariev
Cyber Security Consultant at Ukroboronprom
Real User
Top 5
Stable with good security and easy to manage

Pros and Cons

  • "Technical support has been extremely helpful."
  • "We need more security to be available on our smartphones and mobile devices."

What is our primary use case?

We buy licenses in order to provide an ecosystem on Microsoft, using Azure for documents and also for accessing Office 365 and for corporate messaging and so on.

We use Azure for everything. For example, we use Microsoft Teams on Azure for our conference calls and we also use scrum tools and project management tools as well. we use it on endpoints to work in remote places. Our CRM and procurement platforms sit on Azure. There's also antivirus features on it.

What is most valuable?

The solution is good for enterprise control and managing various systems.

The solution is quite stable.

The scalability has been good.

We haven't seen any security gaps as of yet. It feels very safe.

The initial setup is very easy.

Technical support has been extremely helpful.

What needs improvement?

We need more security to be available on our smartphones and mobile devices. They need to improve the protections available in that area in particular. We're actually currently looking for solutions that will protect devices of this nature so that they can safely access the corporate network. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We began to use this solution last year, in 2020, when we begin to have to do remote work.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is excellent. There are no bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. the performance has been good. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability of Azure is very good. If a company wants to expand it, it can do so with relative ease.

We have about 300 endpoints in our organization that use Microsoft Azure. 

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support on offer is very good. If we ever need help or extra assistance, they are happy to jump in. We're quite satisfied with the level of service on offer.

How was the initial setup?

The installation was mostly straightforward, although we did run into a few small issues. We had the local Microsoft team assist us, however. For the most part, everything ran smoothly.

It typically takes two to four hours to install everything.

We have a technical team of 15 people that can handle deployment and maintenance as necessary. They are IT and help desk personnel as well as two managers. We also have a team that focuses on cybersecurity and information protection.

What about the implementation team?

Our local Microsoft team helped with the installation.

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

We're on a three-year standard license. We do have to pay for licensing.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We haven't looked at other solutions. We prefer sticking with Azure.

What other advice do I have?

We're customers and end-users.

We use both the cloud and on-premises. 

We're using the latest version of the solution.

I'd rate the solution at a seven out of ten. It's very good, however, it has room to grow.

I'd highly recommend the solution to other individuals and organizations.

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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Learn what your peers think about Microsoft Azure. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: October 2021.
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FV
CEO at CLIFURVA
Reseller
Top 20
Very stable infrastructure as a service with good technical support

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution is very stable for Windows setups."
  • "The pricing needs to be a bit lower. It's an expensive solution right now."

What is our primary use case?

Right now we're designing our desktop solutions. I need, for example, to use a virtual desktop and I need to use infrastructure as a service. I am looking for other infrastructure as a service solutions as well,

What is most valuable?

We really like the infrastructure as a service and the data center as a service solution functionality. 

The backup data center and the business compute solutions for Azure are good. There are a lot of good hybrid solutions with onsite and cloud solutions.

The solution is very easy to set up.

The solution is very stable for Windows setups.

The technical support on offer has been very good.

What needs improvement?

The pricing needs to be a bit lower. It's an expensive solution right now.

In future releases, I would like to see Microsoft offer personal desktop environments in a virtual solution. Citrix, for example, now offers this as an option.

For how long have I used the solution?

I only have some limited experience with the product. I've only been using it for about six months or so. It hasn't been that long.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

For the most part, the solution is stable. It's great with the Windows solution, however, with Linux and other operating systems, I hope that it's okay. I don't know for certain. I've never tried it with others. For Windows, it is very good. When the customer has all-Windows solutions everything is okay. There are no bugs or glitches and it doesn't crash or freeze.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The companies we usually sell to are typically medium-sized. When it comes to scaling, the cloud solution is an elastic solution. I can scale it well. The customer can go up however high they want to go. The solution allows for that flexibility. It's easy to expand with the solution.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've reached out to technical support in the past. I understand that if I need them I can easily reach them. They are available and responsive. I'd say we are satisfied with our solution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is not difficult or complex. It's pretty straightforward. It's easy. A company shouldn't have any issue with the process.

We sell the solution to our clients and it takes six months to one year to deploy it.

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

We would like to see Microsoft lower its prices a bit for their customers. It's a costly solution.

What other advice do I have?

I'm a Microsoft reseller.

I'm not sure which version of the solution we're using.

While we are currently using the on-premises deployment model, we are considering moving to the cloud.

I'd recommend the solution to other users and organizations. I'm already recommending it to various clients as a potential solution for them.

I'd rate the solution at a nine out of ten. We're quite satisfied with the solution.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Reseller
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OmidKoushki
Solution Architect at KIAN company
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Can be used for disaster recovery and business continuity

Pros and Cons

  • "In terms of computer resource management and reduced cost, it is very, very effective. In large environments, it gives you a lot of flexibility to provide different services, like disaster recovery and business continuity with simple and great options because you don't have to spend a lot of time for maintenance, upgrades, and security."
  • "I think Azure Active Directory and also the backup solutions provided in Azure need to be improved by Microsoft. The backup solution is not a very enterprise solution, and it is very simple. I think in comparison with other backup solutions like Nakivo and Veeam Backup, it can be improved to have a lot of options."

What is our primary use case?

It is great for computer resource management at reduced cost. Also in a large environment, it gives you a lot of flexibility to provide different services, like disaster recovery and business continuity.

What is most valuable?

In terms of computer resource management and reduced cost, it is very, very effective. In large environments, it gives you a lot of flexibility to provide different services, like disaster recovery and business continuity with simple and great options because you don't have to spend a lot of time for maintenance, upgrades, and security. Also, Microsoft Azure provides a lot of services that can be managed by Microsoft like NetApp and SQL Server on a database.

Microsoft Azure has services such as ACS, Azure Container Service. This is very useful for improvements in running applications in a scalable environment. You will not need to spend time building the cluster on-premises, and you can improve your clusters with a lot of administration options.

What needs improvement?

I think Azure Active Directory and also the backup solutions provided in Azure need to be improved by Microsoft. The backup solution is not a very enterprise solution, and it is very simple. I think in comparison with other backup solutions like Nakivo and Veeam Backup, it can be improved to have a lot of options.

Along with this, one of the lack of options in Azure is managing antiviruses in virtual machines in the Azure environment. For example, if we have a lot of virtual machines on-premises and have to migrate them in Azure, there is no handy tool for the central management of antivirus software in all virtual machines in Azure.

On-premises, we have a lot of options like Kaspersky, Norton, and a lot of others, but in the Azure environment, you are limited to Windows ATP.

Windows ATP solutions are limited and can be improved by Microsoft, specifically the central management of the GUI for configuring agents on virtual machines.

I think Microsoft Azure should provide more innovation and new services to get better performance in the market.

The documentation for how to connect to CLI could also be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using Microsoft Azure for around three years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is very scalable and can be distributed to different regions.

How are customer service and technical support?

I'm not involved in using technical support because I directly work with an Azure architect on my team who is responsible for providing support and leading the team as well as contacting the Microsoft support team. In general, however, I think, one of the best advantages of Microsoft services is the support team made up of technical engineers who help solve problems.

How was the initial setup?

As for the initial setup, the GUI in Microsoft is very simple and very handy, but in Azure Container Service, it is not very handy and is very complex. You would need to go forward with CLI.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate Microsoft Azure at eight on a scale from one to ten. 

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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HB
Software Engineer at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Offers secure network access, with excellent app services feature

Pros and Cons

  • "Offers many data security features including securing network access."
  • "The cost management and billing section features could be improved."

What is our primary use case?

The solution comes with multiple features, including managing resources and creating a virtual machine. We have the possibility to create a virtual machine depending on the type of storage we want and the hardware configuration we want. We also use it to manage our code base because it comes with all the ICT features to allow continuous integration and so on. We are customers of Microsoft Azure

What is most valuable?

The solution offers many data security features including securing network access, and the portal is user friendly with a dashboard that makes it easy to find what you're looking for. I'd say the app services feature is great, and they provide free training on how to use that. They provide highly detailed documentation. The dashboard comes with a monitoring section so you can set up alerts for your budget, for example, and it will provide you with some metrics on how it's performing. In general, it's very user friendly. 

What needs improvement?

I believe the cost management and billing section features could be improved because sometimes it may seem somewhat complicated to find certain settings to set up a threshold for resource consumption and track expenses in real-time.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for more than a year. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Microsoft is well known for its scalability and stability, and this solution provides both. We have more than 50 users in the company. As a software developer, I'm happy with where it's at right now, but if the company is planning to increase use, that would be a good idea. As a developer, whenever I need to create a virtual machine or make use of Azure resources, I can easily do that.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is very good and responsive.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward because it was linked to our Microsoft account and it's just a question of activating your subscription. They have some training videos and their help and support is very responsive. I've contacted them multiple times on some problems and they were very helpful. I've also used their chat-bot feature and if that doesn't help, you get passed to human support.

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

I think licensing is pay as you go because you have a monthly budget assigned to your account and depending on which services are running, it's consumed from that budget.

What other advice do I have?

I would definitely recommend Azure because it's an enterprise trade cloud platform and can provide valuable insights of your data and of metrics of data sources in real time. It's totally secure, comes with support and numerous code development languages enabling scaling as you go. 

I rate this solution an eight out of 10. 

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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Jose Barbosa
Managing Director at GTI Digital | Finanblue
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Secure, useful with incredible customization and the support is good

Pros and Cons

  • "If you have large traffic amounts, Microsoft Azure will continue to provide our customers with the best storage experience."
  • "The initial setup can be improved."

What is our primary use case?

We use Microsoft Azure to host our software development solutions and solutions for reproduction.

We have many solutions running alongside Microsoft Azure that are mainly for the financial sector.

We use Microsoft Azure to host and develop.

What is most valuable?

It's great! It's very useful.

It has a separate environment for developers and developers' solutions. We have environments for PaaS and quality assurance, and we also have an environment where we can lend our solutions to our customers.

We like the Azure DevOps.

If you have large traffic amounts, Microsoft Azure will continue to provide our customers with the best storage experience.

It's very secure.

Microsoft Azure has incredible customization.

What needs improvement?

It's not user-friendly because it is made for developers. A normal user can't use it, but for a developer, it is a very friendly solution.

The initial setup can be improved. It should be simplified and made easier for developers to set it up.

I would like to see the use of Microsoft DevOps simplified. It's automation to develop and deploy software that is very difficult to use. It is so complicated and we need extra time to learn it. It is not easy. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with Microsoft Azure since 2016.

We use the standard S3 applications.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Microsoft Azure is very reliable. It's a highly stable solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Microsoft Azure offers huge scalability. We can manage scalability automatically or manually. It is very fast and very reliable.

We have approximately 30 users in our organization who use Microsoft Azure.

How are customer service and technical support?

The service is very good. They are highly technical and provide answers to things that are not easy to apply. Before the pandemic, at least, the support was good and very fast. 

We had some issues with support after the pandemic, where the replies took a very long time. Technical support could improve their response time. They should respond faster.

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

We use many Microsoft tools, such as Microsoft Teams, also Skype, and Google Meet.

How was the initial setup?

The initials setup is difficult. It requires specialists. 

Similar to Google Cloud and Amazon Web Services, it is complex.

It can take six to twelve months to deploy this solution.

What about the implementation team?

We had help from specialists to help with the complex setup. It is not easy for everyone.

What other advice do I have?

I would suggest calling a specialist who is certified to help with the setup and the deployment, don't do it yourself. The specialists are reliable and can deploy the solution faster.

I would rate Microsoft Azure a ten 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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PP
Management Executive at a security firm with 11-50 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Great tool for analytics, storage and retention, but carries excessive licensing costs

Pros and Cons

  • "It is stable and collaborative."
  • "The biggest area needing improvement involves the licensing cost."

What is our primary use case?

We use the solution for analytics, storage and retention, for just about everything.

What is most valuable?

The solution is fantastic, with Teams, the works. It's just an amazing product.

It is stable and collaborative. It also helps that every person has Microsoft. So, the ease of use and the compatibility between users is fantastic for collaboration.

What needs improvement?

The biggest area needing improvement involves the licensing cost. The cost of actually acquiring the solution is of much significance to small to medium enterprises, especially in countries that have a negative currency. The biggest challenge we face in Africa is the lack of awareness among overseas, European and American vendors of the massive impact that the exchange rate has in the South African market. A cost of $20 for you can equal 300 rand for us. This is what most vendors neglect to realize, that a price affixed to something for the European or American market cannot be applied to the rest of the world or to a continent like Africa. The disregarding by vendors of the importance of the exchange rate amounts to ignorance or arrogance.

My issues are not with the product itself, which I think is great, including Microsoft's strategy concerning respecting it and the consolidation. The pricing, in terms of what can be referred to as traditional third world countries, needs to be addressed. 

The main takeaway that vendors should leave with is that they should not neglect the market in South Africa or in Africa. It is not enough for them to want to have a presence or sell a license. They should also show a desire to sell a value proposition.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Microsoft Azure for the last two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is very scalable.

I have clients who use it and there are plans to increase its usage.

How are customer service and technical support?

In respect of technical support, Microsoft's skill level in the African market is great. There has been swinging about in terms of Microsoft's skill-set over the last three years and I think this boils down to the company having undertaken much training and education. McAfee can learn from Microsoft. 

How was the initial setup?

As it is a cloud-based solution, there is no installation involved. It is more about configuration.

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

We pay for the license on a monthly basis. 

What other advice do I have?

The solution is cloud-based.

I utilize it both for my personal use as well as that of my organization.

We have a group company and I think this amounts to around a thousand users.

I would absolutely recommend the solution to others.

Taking into account the usability of Microsoft Azure, I would rate it as a seven out of ten. 

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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RahulSahay
Data Architect at Prolifics
Consultant
Top 10
The data factory is a valuable feature; ML component could be improved

Pros and Cons

  • "The data factory feature."
  • "Auto ML could be improved technically."

What is our primary use case?

My current project is to carry out a comparison between Azure, AWS, and GCP, the three variants of cloud in order to analyze the best possible solution. In terms of costing and services I've been carrying out a comparison between all three. We are currently building the machine learning pipeline. We're partners with Microsoft and I'm a data architect. 

What is most valuable?

The data factory is a valuable feature. I come from a hardcore Microsoft background so I was able to relate to the data factory best among all the components as it's close to my existing system. 

What needs improvement?

I think the pricing model could be improved. I have that clarity with AWS but with Azure it's not that easy. If I am building a solution on Azure, the first question that stakeholders will ask me is about the cost. If I'm using multiple services of Azure, then how do I figure that out given that it's all on cloud.

Technically, I would say there could definitely be improvement on the AutoML part, which is the machine learning component of Azure. I made a comparison between AutoML versus DataRobot, another vendor that provides machine learning. DataRobot is definitely ahead of Azure AutoML. Of course that could be because I'm using the licensed version of DataRobot versus the free version of AutoML but there does seem to be a gap. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for about six months. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't had any issues with stability. I think it's more to do with the volume of data that I am playing with which for now is only 5GB of data. I don't expect any problems.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I don't see any issue with scalability. But here again, on the cloud platform, there won't be any issue with the scalability but you need to understand the pricing. Once you have that,  scaling will never be an issue. 

How was the initial setup?

The complexity or otherwise of the initial setup depends on the person who will be using it. If you take the AutoAI services from other vendors, those are more graphical, more eye pleasing versus what Microsoft offers and less complicated to implement. With Azure ML, values have to be manually fed into the columns and that's clearly going to be more time consuming. 

What other advice do I have?

There are multiple players in the market and this seems to be a good solution. It really depends on the use case and on the customer. I would personally choose AWS over Azure because that's where my experience is and I'm more familiar with AWS.

I would rate this solution a seven out of 10.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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