Different MSDN subscriptions have long offered benefits such as Azure credit to the subscriber. Until recently, we were only able to associate that credit with Microsoft IDs, that is create a new Azure tenant associated with your Microsoft account or associate it with an already existing one. This created some issues with organizations not being able to manage the assets under the corresponding Azure subscription. Personally, the most annoying thing were the issues around using MicrosoftID and OrgID in the same browser session (I’m looking at you, IE). For years I’ve had to switch to a different browser or open a new private session every time I wanted to do a quick check for some setting in Azure AD, which was not available in the O365 Admin center or WAAD PowerShell. Which most of the time resulted in extra annoyance added by having to perform 2FA when using private sessions.
Now, the good folks at Microsoft have introduced the option to associate your Azure benefit with Organizational IDs as well. Even better, you can actually ‘move’ the benefit from the Azure tenant associated with your Microsoft ID to one associated with your Organizational ID. In my case, I have an address which is used as both MicrosoftID and OrgID. I had the Azure benefit originally provisioned with the MicrosoftID, so back when Microsoft announced the free “Access to Azure Active Directory” Azure subscription for all Office 365 customers, I was solely disappointed that I couldn’t just associate my O365 tenant with the Azure tenant I already had (linked to my MicrosoftID). With the newly introduced option, I was able to finally configure it in the way I want it. Here’s how:
- Provision the “Access to Azure Active Directory” free Azure subscription if you haven’t done it already, by clicking on the “Azure AD” link under the Admin section of the Office 365 portal and following the instructions there. This basically provisions an Azure tenant associated with your OrgId, which only includes the Azure AD instance associated with your O365 tenant
- Once you already have the Azure tenant, open your MSDN account page and click the “Link to your Organizational account” link
- Enter the Organizational account address in the dialog that pops up and confirm the changes
- Back on the MSDN account page, click the “Activate Microsoft Azure” link. At this point you will again have to fill in the Azure subscription form, but if you are already logged in with your OrgID all you need to do is pass the text/call verification.
- Once you finish the process you will be able to see all the available items in the left pane on your Azure tenant, as well as verify that the MSDN subscription is added next to the “Access to Azure Active Directory” one
And if you go to the O365 portal now, a single click on the “Azure AD” link will take you to this fully functional Azure tenant. You can now finally use both the Azure and O365 portals side by side!
Note that you still have to use a Microsoft ID to activate the MSDN subscription though. All the details can be found here: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/subscriptions/dn531048.aspx