One Way to Try Microsoft Purview (Data Governance) for Free – BUT…

One of the most complained things about Microsoft Purview Data Governance is the missing of a development/trial option. The pricing of Microsoft Purview is based on different usage types – including Data Map Population, Data Map Enrichment and Data Map Consumption.

Quite a price for “just” a demo/test environment

Erwin (t | b) blogged about the different pieces that form the total pricing (blog post: Updated Microsoft Purview pricing). Erwin also includes a pricing example and at the time of his writing, the minimum costs were set to (a minimum requirement) of 1 CU (=Capacity Unit) for the base data map itself (not including any scans or report generations) => costing 284,7€/month. When you add the costs for scanning, insights generation and advanced resource sets, this could easily sum up heavily. And was not suitable for a small demo environment.

But something changed, you can now try Purview (almost) for free

It was the blog post describing a “Low-cost solution for managing access to SQL health, ..”. That blog post mentions a completely new information to me – that the Microsoft Purview Data Map Consumption is free of charge for a metadata storage size below 1 MB. I checked the Purview pricing page and yes – the included Quantity with 1 MB is mentioned there (OH “The first 1 MB of Data Map meta data storage is free for all customers”).

And my reaction was – Nice, very nice.. I can try and create Microsoft Purview instances for free and test new features..

BUT: I wanted to be sure and check, how much metadata (sources, scan results, data assets, classifications) can fit into 1 MB of metadata.

Let’s try it – create a new Purview account

I immediately went over to the Azure Portal and created a new Microsoft Purview account – let’s name it purviewSizeTest.

And feed the data catalog with some demo data. I went for AdventureWorks as it is a small demo database including some tables. If you do not know how to get Adventureworks sample data into an Azure SQL Database, Koen (t) wrote a nice how-to post (

I created two sub-collections in my data map and registered the Azure SQL Database (including a database with AdventureWorks) in my data map.

Next, I defined a scan definition referencing the system defaul scan rule set for Azure SQL (I configured the scan without Lineage extraction) and ran the scan once.

The scan itself ran for ~7 minutes and discovered and ingested 26 data assets into the data map.

How to check the Microsoft Purview Data map size

Now the big question was – how much meta data was produced by these two sub-collections, the Azure SQL source, the scan plus the 26 data assets discovered?

You can check your Data Map Storage Size in the Azure properties (Overview) of your Purview account. In my case the storage size was not reflected and updated immediately – I think it took about 6 hours that the storage size was displayed here. And guess what, the storage size was < 1 MB! πŸ˜‰

So it is free, right… !? hmm.. is it really free?

After the Storage size check, I needed to check the pricing. And guess what.. the test was (almost) free. Why only almost and not free as I mentioned above?

Well, the data map consumption is free for the small set of meta data, but scans still cost you some € / $. In my case the scan of my Adventureworks database lasted 1.08 vCore hours and cost me ~0.68 € (pricing is 0.598€/1 vCore Hour).

And even after a week of testing, there is no additional pricing entry in my Azure costs for that specific Purview account.

Sounds nice, BUT …..My findings are:

  • You do not get a completly free Microsoft Purview account – Only Data Map Consumption for a small (really small) set of meta data is free (the first 1 MB is free).
  • Data Map Population (Scans, ingestion, classification) and Data Map Enrichment (Insights Generation & Advanced Resource Sets) are NOT free.
  • Purview Applications could also cost you some money (most of them are still in preview right now and free).

=> Be aware, you do not get a completly free Microsoft Purview instance (initial costs for the scan) but you can create an environment containing an Azure SQL source + AdventureWorks database to demo Microsofts Purview features with no running costs.

Pricing example based on the current Microsoft Purview pricing as of 2023-02-09.


About wolfgang

Data Platform enthusiast
This entry was posted in Azure Purview, InformationSharing, Microsoft Purview. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to One Way to Try Microsoft Purview (Data Governance) for Free – BUT…

  1. Pingback: Try Purview (Almost) for Free – Curated SQL

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