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Fed up with your Azure subscription name? – Notes from the field

30 Apr 2018 by Stewart Gibbons

So, I’ve been working with multiple Azure subscriptions recently and as most of the people I work with have either MPN or MSDN subscriptions, what’s apparent (and also rather irritating) is they all have the same name e.g. Visual Studio Enterprise – MSDN.

This is fine when you only have one subscription at your disposal, but I now have two or three – all with the same name.

Being a “scripty” I have been working Azure CLI to perform automated build-out of test platforms; with my new funky automation build script that I have created. To do this, I must then select the correct subscription to deploy to. As the names are all the same, I now have to be a genius, with a photographic memory, and remember the Sub ID (read GUID) to select the correct subscription.

On reflection I thought “well the best way to deal with this is to change the subscription with PowerShell”. So next stop was Google, I put in the relevant search, and found several articles saying; ”you can’t change the name in PS, shock horror!! impossible!!!”

Reading through articles, what was not stated (but implied) is that you could change it somehow.  Anyway to cut a long story short, you can change the subscription names for MSDN and MPN subscriptions through the billing portal https://account.windowsazure.com/subscriptions – and as this a subscription change this sort of makes logical sense.

If you want a full walk through, check out this blog from ‘Coding Out Loud’ on how to rename your windows azure subscription.

I have now changed my subscription name to something useful, so I can fix my script parameters in all my scripts and simplify the code. It can take up to 24 hours to update the name so don’t panic if you’re not seeing it change.

If you intend on using more than one Azure subscription and want to make life a little easier (e.g. stick to a standard names) it may be worth changing your MPN/MSDN subscription name.

Moral of this story – sometimes you just have to use a GUI.