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Get Started with Plans for Windows Azure Pack: Walkthrough Guide

Updated: June 24, 2013

This step-by-step walkthrough shows you how to create plans and add-ons by using the management portal for administrators in Windows Azure Pack for Windows Server. These tasks enable your tenants to view available plans and add-ons on the management portal for tenants as they choose options for the subscriptions.

This document assumes that you have some familiarity with the management portal and know how to provision services, such as website clouds and VM clouds. After you complete this walkthrough, you will:

  • Know how to author plans and add-ons.

  • Have a broad understanding of how to administer accounts, subscriptions, and plans for an optimal experience for your tenants.

Time requirements

The procedures in this document usually take an hour or less if all the services that are needed for the plans and add-on are provisioned in the management portal.

Walkthrough steps

Prerequisites

Before you can create a plan or add-on, you must have one or more of the following services provisioned in management portal for administrators:

  • Website Clouds

  • VM Clouds

  • Service Bus Clouds

  • SQL Servers

  • MySQL Servers

Only the services that you have already provisioned will be available to you when you author a plan or add-on.

Plans overview

The Windows Azure Pack enables you to define plans to which your tenants can choose to subscribe, selecting only those plans that they qualify for based on billing, capacities, usage, and other considerations.

After establishing an account, a tenant can do the following:

  • Subscribe to one or more plans. Each subscription is associated with one plan.

  • Buy add-ons that are associated with a plan.

  • Upload a management certificate.

  • Designate one or more co-administrators who can manage services within a subscription.

User accounts and subscriptions

An account is the highest level of control. A tenant can sign up to create an account, or an administrator can create it. Each account can have one or more subscriptions. A subscription is associated with one plan. A plan can have one or more add-ons associated with it. Tenants can add and remove a plan's add-ons from their subscription.

Administering accounts and subscriptions

As an administrator, you can perform the following tasks on accounts and subscriptions:

  • Create or remove a user account for a tenant.

  • Add a subscription to a tenant's account.

  • Suspend or delete a subscription.

  • Reset an account's password, configure the required password strength, and enable or disable Forgot Password (the default is Disable).

  • Add and remove email notifications.

  • Enable or disable self-service subscription management. (The default is Enable.)

  • Require account validation (the default is No).

If you suspend a subscription, you can continue to modify the plan that is associated with the subscription, but the tenant will not be able to access any of the plan's resources.

States of a subscription

A subscription has the following states:

  • Active

  • Suspended

  • Pending delete, and Deleted

  • Locked and Unlocked (resource quota)

  • In-sync and Out-of-sync (with a plan)

Actions on a subscription

The administrator and the tenant can both do the following to an individual subscription:

  • Add and remove co-administrators of the subscription.

  • Add and remove add-ons that are associated with the subscription's plan.

Plans and add-ons

A tenant cannot access any services unless that tenant is subscribed to at least one plan. Plans, also known as service plans, define the resources, capabilities, and limitations of the hosting services that are offered to a tenant according to a scope that is determined by the hosting service provider. The scope of various plans is typically defined by the capabilities of the resource providers, the pricing structure that a tenant can choose from, and by other business or organizational requirements.

Before you author a plan or add-on, the services that you provide in your plan or add-on must be previously provisioned, so that they will be available when you author the plan or add-on. Provisioning resources includes tasks such as registering URL endpoints for services and creating databases.

Add-ons are optional plan services that the tenant can choose to include in the subscription. Think of add-ons as services that are available as a-la-carte options in addition to the core services that the plan provides.

If you want to add a service to a plan, and have it be included without the tenant's interaction, you should add the service directly to the plan instead of creating it as an add-on.

Quotas provide limits on resource usage that are acceptable to the resource provider who provides the service.

States of plans and add-ons

The following table lists states and status values for plans and add-ons.

 

Plan states and status Add-on states and status
  • Public

    Tenants can subscribe to a plan only when the plan is public.

  • Private

    The initial state after creation.

  • Decommissioned

    The plan is active, but will not accept any new subscriptions.

  • Configured or Not Configured

    If configured, the plan has a specified invitation code and the maximum number of subscriptions allowed is specified or marked as unlimited.

  • Update in progress

    The plan is being updated and is currently unavailable.

  • Available

    The add-on has not been purchased by the tenant.

  • Acquired

    The add-on has been purchased.

  • Active

    The add-on is linked to a plan.

  • Decommissioned

    The add-on is active, but will not accept any new subscriptions.

  • Configured or Not Configured

    If configured, the add-on has a specified maximum number of purchases allowed to the subscription or is marked as unlimited.

  • In-sync

    The add-on has been validated for the subscription by Windows Azure Pack.

  • Out-of-sync

    The add-on has not been validated for the subscription by Windows Azure Pack.

Rules and guidelines for plans and add-ons

Consider the following as you author plans and guidelines and administer them:

  • You can delete a plan only if it there are no tenants who are subscribed to the plan.

  • You cannot remove a service from a plan if there is there is a subscription that is using the service.

  • When you clone a plan, all plan properties are copied to the new plan, including quotas, configurations, and advertisements.

  • Only the administrator can add an add-on to a plan.

  • You cannot add an add-on to a plan if that plan is in a decommissioned state.

Step 1: Author a plan

To authoring a plan, you must specify the services that you want to have included with the plan, and specify the add-ons that you want tenants to optionally add to their subscription.

To author a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans, and then click New.

  2. Click Create Plan.

  3. On the Authoring a Hosting Plan wizard, do the following:

    • Specify a friendly name for the plan.

    • Select one or more of the following services to include in the hosting plan, provided that they have been previously provisioned. For each service, specify the available resource for that service.

      • Website Clouds

      • VM Clouds

      • Service Bus Clouds

      • SQL Servers

      • MySQL Servers

    • Select one or more of the available add-ons to include in the plan. For each add-on, specify the available resource for that service.

The plan that you created should be listed on the Plans tab in the content pane. Now you can modify the plan by adding and removing services and add-ons, configure its access, set the maximum subscription limit, and advertise the plan.

Step 2. Set properties for a plan

After you create a plan, you must specify values for specific properties of the plan, depending on the services in the plan.

To set properties for a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Click the plan you want to modify. The plan's Dashboard appears.

    The Dashboard includes statistics, a list of services, and a list of add-ons. If applicable, additional property settings for the plan are displayed, which can include the following:

    • Configurable features and resources for the service. For example, templates, hardware profiles, and networks for virtual machine clouds.

    • Quotas for usage limits.

  3. After all the applicable properties have been set, click Save on the command bar.

You can now author an add-on at any time. Feel free to do the procedure Step 8: Author an add-on before continuing with the next step.

Step 3: Modify a plan

After you create a plan, you can add and remove services of the plan and also add and remove add-ons.

To modify a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Click the plan you want to modify. The plan's Dashboard appears.

  3. To add a service, click Add Service on the command bar to be presented with the list of available services that you can add to your plan. To remove a service, select the service to be removed and click Remove Service.

Step 4: Configure a plan

Before a plan can be made public, it must be configured. A configured plan has a specified invitation code so that tenants who know the code can subscribe to the plan. Configuring a plan also requires that you specify the maximum number of allowable subscriptions.

To configure a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Click the plan you want to configure. The plan's Dashboard appears.

  3. Click the Configure tab.

  4. Specify an invitation code so that tenants can sign up for your plan on the management portal for tenants. You must provide prospective tenants with the invitation code.

  5. Specify a value for the maximum number of allowed subscriptions per account, or select the unlimited check box. This value is the maximum number of times that a tenant can add this plan to their subscription.

  6. On the command bar, click Save.

Step 5: Advertise a plan

You can add, edit, and delete advertisements that are shown on the tenant portal when a tenant views available plans. You can also export plan details to XML or publish them to the Microsoft Web Hosting Gallery.

To advertise a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Click the plan you want to advertise. The plan's Dashboard appears.

  3. Click the Advertise tab.

  4. On the command bar, click Add Advertisement and provide the text that advertises your plan, such as the number of virtual machines, resource capabilities, marketing promotions, and so on.

    You can also edit and delete advertisements.

  5. On the content pane, click Export plan details into XML file to save for your records.

  6. On the content pane, click Import plan details to Web Hosting Gallery to publish your plan to the Microsoft Web Hosting Gallery.

Step 6: Change access to a plan

After you have authored a plan, made the required configurations, and provided the required settings, you are ready to make the plan public so that tenants can subscribe to it.

You will also need to change the access if you want to make the plan private again or decommission it. For a list of possible states, see States of plans and add-ons.

To change access to a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Select the plan.

  3. On the command bar, click Change Access.

  4. Choose the state that you want to apply to the plan.

Step 7: Clone a plan

You can clone a plan to use as a template for creating other plans.

To clone a plan

  1. In the management portal, click Plans.

  2. Select the plan.

  3. On the command bar, click Clone Plan.

  4. Specify the name for the cloned plan.

    The cloned plan will have all the services, add-ons, configurations, and property values of the plan from which it was cloned.

Step 8: Author an add-on

Authoring an add-on is similar to authoring a plan except that you are choosing a service, or services, that you want to provide as optional to your subscribers.

To author an add-on

  1. On the All Items navigation pane, click Plans, and then click New.

  2. Click Create Add-On.

  3. On the Authoring a Hosting Add-On wizard, do the following:

    • Specify a friendly name for the add-on.

    • Select one or more of the available services to include in the add-on.

    The add-on that you created should be listed on the Add-ons tab in the content pane.

You can modify, configure, and specify settings for an add-on as you do for plans. These tasks include the following:

  • Add and remove services from an add-on.

  • Configure an add-on by setting the maximum number of times the add-on can be added to a plan, or by setting it to unlimited.

  • Advertise an add-on by adding, editing, removing text advertisements. Unlike plans, add-on advertisements details cannot be exported to XML files or be published in the Microsoft Web Hosting Gallery.

  • Change access to an add-on. For a list of possible states, see States of plans and add-ons.

  • Clone an add-on.

See also

 
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