Buying directly through Azure.com is the fastest and easiest way for organizations of all sizes to get started with Azure. You can manage your Azure deployments and usage yourself and get a monthly bill from Microsoft for the services used.
The Azure portal is a public website that you can access with any web browser. Once you sign in with your Azure account, you can create, manage, and monitor any available Azure services. You can identify a service you’re looking for, get links for help on a topic, and deploy, manage, and delete resources. It also guides you through complex administrative tasks using wizards and tooltips.
The dashboard view provides high-level details about your Azure environment. You can customize the dashboard by moving and resizing tiles, and displaying services you’re interested in.
The portal doesn’t provide any way to automate repetitive tasks. For example, to set up multiple VMs, you would need to create them one at a time by completing the wizard for each VM. This process makes the portal approach time-consuming and error-prone for complex tasks.