Differences between Microsoft Azure global and Microsoft Azure China

In this blog post we will explain the main differences between Microosft Azure global and Microsoft Azure China.

Introduction to Microsoft Azure China

Microsoft Azure China was officially launched in 2014 and was the first international public cloud provider to bring its cloud technology to China. Azure global and Azure China provide resources and services to millions of customers worldwide. You can read here all the customers who are running their services on Azure China.

Microsoft Azure is a physically separated instance of cloud services located in China. It’s independently operated and transacted by 21Vianet. Microsoft Azure services are running in 4 regions in China such as China North, China North 2, China East, and China East 2. China North regions are located in Beijing while on the other hand China East regions are located in Shanghai. China North and China East were released in 2014 and China North 2 and China East 2 in 2018.

Differences between Microsoft Azure Global and Microsoft Azure China

1. Services

When it comes to the size and amount of the services China is comparatively smaller than Microsoft Azure global regions.
Here a list of all available services: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/global-infrastructure/services/?regions=china-east&products=all.

2. Domain, Support, Tickets & Billing

Microsoft Azure China has its own domain (https://www.azure.cn/en-us/), Microsoft Azure support, ticketing system & billing dashboard. Microsoft Azure China accounts are completely separate from global accounts in all aspects.

3. Connection between Microsoft Azure Global and Microsoft Azure China

There is no direct connection between Microsoft Azure global and Microsoft Azure China. So we can say that Azure China has no direct access and connectivity with other Azure regions outside of China. There is no common link between Azure China and Azure global so there are separate links are available to get the inquiry or any information regarding Azure China regions and Azure global. 

4. Microsoft Azure China Accounts

Due to the separate infrastructures, the user accounts of Microsoft Azure China are completely different from Microsoft Azure global. In order to apply for an account, you need a Chinese legal entity and ICP license. A valid Chinese business license issued by the bureau of industry and commerce and physical presence of the client is mandatory to get Azure lances as well as any cloud hosting service within China. Customers who want to use all the resources available on both Azure China regions are required to create an Azure China account. And only the Azure China’s account holders will be able to use resources of the concern Azure regions within China. While on the other hand all those customers who want to use resources outside of China such as Azure global are required to own Azure global account by fulfilling the respective account procedure of Azure global. 

5. ICP License

Likewise, Chinese accounts are totally separate from global accounts in all aspects. Azure does not have access to the Azure China accounts and the prices are not shown on the Azure cost calculator and the accounts of both Azure China and Azure are not combine.  The registration process is quite different, in Azure China you need a legal entity registered for the account opening while in Azure global no such procedure. For the purpose of registration, ICP (Internet Content Provider) tactfully watch the registration procedure. In China to publish or to upload documents or any type of content on the internet, you need to have an ICP license by providing some necessary information about the owner of the website, domain name, IP address, content, and security contact person to protect customers. All these measures are to be taken to protect the customers from the violation. There are a complete check and balance in order to publish a website and other related documents.

6. Marketplace

Microsoft Azure China has its own marketplace (https://market.azure.cn/). Microsoft Azure China’s marketplace is completely separate from global marketplace. 

7. Payment

Azure Global has two purchase options: Pay as You Go (PAYG) and Pay In- Advance. Azure China offers Pay-In-Advance model.

8. Purchase programs

Azure Global users have multiple channels to purchase the service, including signing Enterprise Agreement / Cloud and Server Enrollment with Microsoft, Self-purchasing Online, purchasing thru Partners, etc. In China, there are two purchase programs, which are Offline Contract signed by enterprise customers with pre-committed agreement only and Online Purchase for self-purchase online by either individual or enterprise customers.

Wrapping up

China has become an important market for business, as the rise of the technologies, internet, and other inventions allowed more and more customers to begin online businesses. Azure has created technologies with Chinese companies to strengthen customers in China as well as around the globe. Microsoft Azure China is quite different from Azure global since Azure China has its own domain, Azure support, procedures for applying account, billing, and support. Despite of having the same platform, Microsoft Azure China seems completely separate from Azure global.

About Roopu Cloud

If you have any questions or concerns about Microsoft Azure China, you can contact us. We are experts in building and implementing cloud solutions in the Microsoft Azure China platform as well as in other Chinese cloud platforms. Let us help you!

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