Day 4 - Understanding Azure SKUs


A very common term you will come across in Azure is SKU.

In Azure, “SKU” stands for “Stock Keeping Unit.”

SKU refers to a specific version or offering of a resource within Azure. It defines the characteristics, capabilities, features, performance levels, and pricing of various Azure resources and services like virtual machines, storage accounts, databases, and more.

Each SKU typically comes with a unique set of features and is tailored for different workloads and requirements.

Azure SKUs can be a double-edged sword. The upside? Pay for the basic SKU, get just the essentials. The downside? Sometimes, you need just one advanced feature, but it’s locked behind a premium SKU. Efficient yet potentially frustrating.

Let’s look at an example to understand it better.

Let’s say you want to enable Azure Firewall. You have the following SKUs:

  • Firewall Basic
  • Firewall Standard
  • Firewall Premium

The available features are as follows:

Azure Firewall SKUs
Azure Firewall SKUs. Source:

Funny Observation

Recall the Windows 7 saga? We had Starter, Home Premium, Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate. Each variant, seemingly identical yet distinct in features and price.

This echoes in Azure services. Activating Azure Firewall is just one part. It’s the SKU that truly defines the arsenal of capabilities, not just the service label.

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