Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) Labs and Azure Access.

Skillable offers Learning Partners two options for labs that require Azure access:

  1. Labs that use a Microsoft Azure Pass

  2. Labs that use the Azure Cloud Slice solution and include the benefit of using Azure subscriptions issued and managed by Skillable 

Comparison Guide

We detail what are the differences between Azure Cloud Slice and Microsoft Azure Pass solutions:

Question Azure Cloud Slice by Skillable Microsoft Azure Pass
Do the labs work? Yes, each lab has been tested and is not subject to any Azure restrictions Maybe, Azure Passes previously have been restricted and can change with no notice
How many times can I launch a lab? Each lab can be launched up to ten (10) times There is no limit to lab launches
Can labs be saved and later resumed? No Yes
Do I have access to subscription-level resources? Yes Yes
Are Azure accounts automatically created? Yes, accounts are created on your behalf No, must use an MSA or GitHub account
Is Azure access limited? Yes, access is limited to resources required for the lab No, students can use the pass for non-lab activities
How long is Azure access available in labs? 180 days Until either the Azure Pass expires (30 days after activation) or Azure credit runs out
How long is post-class lab access available? 180 days 180 days
Can I begin the lab right after purchase? Yes, lab access is instant No, must order Azure Passes through Courseware Marketplace
Do I need to order anything in addition to the labs? No Yes, must order Azure Passes prior to the class start

Frequently Asked Questions.

  • If I purchase the Azure Cloud Slice labs, how do I use subscriptions, schedule a class and what will change for my students?
    • Nothing will change in the student experience. You will schedule classes and launch labs the same way you would with the Azure Pass solution. When a lab is launched, a student is provided credentials in the lab environment that they can use to access Azure.
  • How can I be sure that Azure Cloud Slice labs will have access to Azure?
    • Labs that use our Azure Cloud Slice solution run on a set of subscriptions managed by Skillable that are not subject to Microsoft restrictions at this time and have been whitelisted for increased capacity and activity.
  • Can I purchase labs that use the Azure Cloud Slice solution in the Microsoft Courseware Marketplace?
    • Yes, when you select Online Labs, you will see the offerings we provide for those labs. If both offerings are available, you can toggle and select the solution you need.
  • When can I expect the Azure Cloud Slice solution for specific lab(s) to release?
    • Check and subscribe to our Course Roadmap for updates. This is the best place to see course status and availability dates. Not all courses will have an Azure Cloud Slice solution.
  • Do students receive post-class access to Azure Cloud Slice labs?
    • Yes, for 180 days (6 months). To keep the price of the labs low, students are limited to launching each lab a maximum of ten (10) times.
  • Why is there a limit of only ten (10) launches per Azure Cloud Slice lab?
    • The number of lab launches is limited to keep the price of the labs as low as possible. On average, students launch a lab 1.4 times, so we decided to offer ten (10) launches to allow for additional practice.
  • Are students able to save progress and resume later in Azure Cloud Slice labs?
    • Azure Cloud Slice labs are designed to be completed in one session, so saving should not be necessary. It is important that the instructor allocate enough time for students to complete lab(s) during each class session.
  • How long can a student work in each of the ten (10) launches within an Azure Cloud Slice lab?
    • We recommend that instructors set expectations and double the length of the lab for maximum duration. For example, if the lab takes an hour to complete, the instructor should allocate two hours in the class session for students to complete the lab.


Azure Subscriptions and Azure Cost Management.

  • Do I need to buy an Azure subscription for each student using Azure Cloud Slice labs?
    • No. One of the benefits of using our Azure Cloud Slice solution is that everything the student needs to complete the lab is included in the price. The experience is also easier to use than an Azure Pass as there is nothing for a student to redeem prior to the class.
  • Will I receive an additional bill for my students’ Azure consumption costs after Azure Cloud Slice labs are completed?
    • No. In order to offer a consistent price to our customers, Skillable has assumed the risk of paying the actual consumption costs. There are no additional costs once labs have been completed.
  • Do I still need to order Azure Passes if we choose to use Azure Cloud Slice labs?
    • No. The Azure subscriptions required to complete the labs are included in the lab; there is nothing additional you need to order.
  • Are there any monetary limits for students when using the Azure Cloud Slice solution for a lab?
    • No. One of the benefits of using the Azure Cloud Slice solution is that students only have access to what they need, when they need it, in order to complete the lab.


Unique and Supplemental Content.

  • I host my own content that requires Azure access; can I use Azure Passes for my labs?
    • Azure Passes are only available to authorized Microsoft Learning Partners when purchasing through Courseware Marketplace. Azure Passes can only be used for MOC courses. We have many customers who create their own content and need labs as well. You may create labs yourself with a Lab Developer subscription, or you may engage our services team to create them for you. If those labs require access to Azure, you can use our Azure Cloud Slice solution and either use your own Azure subscriptions or use Azure subscriptions managed by us at an additional cost. All labs you create on our platform with our Azure Cloud Slice solution will receive a complimentary security review prior to being launched regardless of the subscription being used.
  • What is the difference between the Azure Pass and your Challenge Labs?
    • An Azure Pass (referred to as a Student Access Pass on Courseware Marketplace) is a product Microsoft created to simplify the process of accessing Azure for learning and evaluation by providing a pre-paid subscription for a short duration. Challenge Labs is an independent learning product created exclusively by Skillable to supplement MOC labs with additional hands-on practice. These labs are aligned to certification exams and match the experience of performance-based testing. There are more than 500 challenges available that range from detailed step-by-step instructions to advanced scenarios with scored testing. In many cases, Challenge Labs provide an additional 30+ hours of lab content. Challenge Labs are included in your MOC lab purchase when you purchase from Skillable. Learn more.


Instructor Tips.

  • How does an instructor prepare to deliver Azure Cloud Slice labs before a class starts?
    • When an instructor is assigned to deliver a class (i.e. weeks or months before the class date), they are given access to launch the labs for preparation purposes. For labs using our Azure Cloud Slice solution, instructors have ten (10) launches per lab during each class and are therefore advised to retain 1 launch per lab for class delivery. For labs using Azure Passes, they can use their MCT MSDN Azure subscription or their own personal Azure subscription to prep.
  • Can an MCT get access to Azure Cloud Slice labs without being assigned as a class instructor?
    • No. Labs are only available from the instructor’s class page, which is only accessible after the instructor has been assigned to a class.


Azure Cloud Slice.

  • Are there different types of the Azure Cloud Slice solution?
    • No, but Azure Cloud Slice labs have one of two different levels of Azure access. Depending on the requirements of the lab, students are either provided access to a managed resource group or a full subscription.
  • Are the labs already setup with the correct level of Azure Cloud Slice or do I need to choose?
    • Yes, labs are already setup with the correct Azure Cloud Slice level of access. You do not have to choose as each lab has been setup with the best level of access (a managed resource group or a full subscription).
  • Will Azure Cloud Slice work if a student needs to have subscription administrator rights to complete a lab?
    • Yes, with a few small restrictions to prevent abuse (such as no access to the Microsoft Courseware Marketplace).
  • When required for a lab, are students in their own Azure Directory Tenant with no ability to see other students?
    • The accounts are from the Skillable tenant. Students cannot see other students or access other students’ resources. If required, students can create their own AAD tenants.


Have more questions or feedback? Click here to contact us or speak to a Skillable Account Executive.