One of the more challenging things for companies considering a full or partial move to the Cloud is producing data on actual costs. Any move to the Cloud has to show cost savings or it's simply not worth it. If a company decides to migrate for any other reason, they're doing it wrong.

Microsoft has released a new tool into beta that profiles existing on-premises infrastructure and then estimates the cost of running apps and services in the Microsoft Azure Cloud.

The tool supports virtualization solutions Hyper-V, System Center Virtual Machine Manager, vCenter, and ESXi and supports Windows and Linux environments.

Simply enter details for the remote environment (address and credentials), alter the frequency and duration, provide a destination and name for the output, and start scanning.

The report includes information on those selected pieces to profile.

And, provides an option to show the estimated cost for 30 days running in Microsoft Azure.

The report can be exported to Excel for reviewing or used later for comparing against subsequent profile scans, if you decide to optimize the environment more to attempt to show improved costs.

The beta version expires on September 1, 2014.

The beta tool is downloadable from here: Microsoft Azure (IaaS) Cost Estimator Tool [Beta]