Export or delete personal data from Azure DevTest Labs

This article provides steps for deleting and exporting personal data from the Azure DevTest Labs service.

What personal data does DevTest Labs collect?

DevTest Labs collects two main pieces of personal data from the user. They are: user email address and user object ID. This information is critical for the service to provide in-service features to lab admins and lab users.

User email address

DevTest Labs uses the user email address to send auto shutdown email notifications to lab users. The email notifies users of their machine being shut down. The users can either postpone or skip the shutdown if they wish to do so. You configure the email address at the lab level or at the VM level.

Setting email at the lab:

Setting email at the lab level

Setting email at the VM:

Setting email at the VM level

User object ID

DevTest Labs uses the user object ID to show month-over-month cost trends and cost by resource information to lab admins. It allows them to track costs and manage thresholds for their Lab.

Estimated cost trend for the current calendar month: Estimated cost trend for the current calendar month

Estimated month-to-date cost by resource: Estimated month-to-date cost by resource

Why do we need this personal data?

The DevTest Labs service uses the personal data for operational purposes. This data is critical for the service to deliver key features. If you set a retention policy on the user email address, lab users do not receive timely auto shutdown email notifications after their email address is deleted from our system. Similarly, the lab admin can't view month-over-month cost trends and cost by resource for machines in their labs if the user object IDs are deleted based on a retention policy. Therefore, this data needs to be retained for as long as the user's resource is active in the Lab.

How can I have the system to forget my personal data?

As a lab user, if you like to have this personal data deleted, you can do so by deleting the corresponding resource in the Lab. The DevTest Labs service anonymizes the deleted personal data 30 days after it's deleted by the user.

For example, If you delete your VM, or removed your email address, the DevTest Labs service anonymizes this data 30 days after the resource is deleted. The 30-day retention policy after deletion is to make sure that we provide an accurate month-over-month cost projection to the lab admin.

How can I request an export on my personal data?

You can export personal and lab usage data by using the Azure portal or PowerShell. The data is exported as two different CSV files:

  • disks.csv - contains information about the disks being used by the different VMs
  • virtualmachines.csv - contains information about the VMs in the lab.

Azure portal

As a lab user, you can request an export on the personal data that the DevTest Labs service stores. To request for an export, navigate to the Personal data option on the Overview page of your lab. Select the Request export button kicks off the creation of a downloadable excel file in your Lab admin's storage account. You can then contact your lab admin to view this data.

  1. Select Personal data on the left menu.

    Personal data page

  2. Select the resource group that contains the lab.

    Select resource group

  3. Select the storage account in the resource group.

  4. On the Storage account page, select Blobs.

    Select Blobs tile

  5. Select the container named labresourceusage in the list of containers.

    Select blob container

  6. Select the folder named after your lab. You find csv files for disks and virtual machines in your lab in this folder. You can download these csv files, filter the content for the lab user requesting an access, and share it with them.

    Download CSV file

Azure PowerShell

Param (
    [Parameter (Mandatory=$true, HelpMessage="The storage account name where to store usage data")]
    [string] $storageAccountName,

    [Parameter (Mandatory=$true, HelpMessage="The storage account key")]
    [string] $storageKey,

    [Parameter (Mandatory=$true, HelpMessage="The DevTest Lab name to get usage data from")]
    [string] $labName,

    [Parameter (Mandatory=$true, HelpMessage="The DevTest Lab subscription")]
    [string] $labSubscription


# Set the subscription for the lab
Get-AzureRmSubscription -SubscriptionId $labSubscription  | Select-AzureRmSubscription

# DTL will create this container in the storage when invoking the action, cannot be changed currently
$containerName = "labresourceusage"

# Get the storage context
$Ctx = New-AzureStorageContext -StorageAccountName $storageAccountName -StorageAccountKey $storageKey 
$SasToken = New-AzureStorageAccountSASToken -Service Blob, File -ResourceType Container, Service, Object -Permission rwdlacup -Protocol HttpsOnly -Context $Ctx

# Generate the storage blob uri
$blobUri = $Ctx.BlobEndPoint + $SasToken

# blobStorageAbsoluteSasUri and usageStartDate are required
$actionParameters = @{
    'blobStorageAbsoluteSasUri' = $blobUri    

$startdate = (Get-Date).AddDays(-7)

$actionParameters.Add('usageStartDate', $startdate.Date.ToString())

# Get the lab resource group
$resourceGroupName = (Find-AzureRmResource -ResourceType 'Microsoft.DevTestLab/labs' | Where-Object { $_.Name -eq $labName}).ResourceGroupName
# Create the lab resource id
$resourceId = "/subscriptions/" + $labSubscription + "/resourceGroups/" + $resourceGroupName + "/providers/Microsoft.DevTestLab/labs/" + $labName + "/"

# !!!!!!! this is the new resource action to get the usage data.
$result = Invoke-AzureRmResourceAction -Action 'exportLabResourceUsage' -ResourceId $resourceId -Parameters $actionParameters -Force
# Finish up cleanly
if ($result.Status -eq "Succeeded") {
    Write-Output "Telemetry successfully downloaded for " $labName
    return 0
    Write-Output "Failed to download lab: " + $labName
    Write-Error $result.toString()
    return -1

The key components in the above sample are:

  • The Invoke-AzureRmResourceAction command.

    Invoke-AzureRmResourceAction -Action 'exportLabResourceUsage' -ResourceId $resourceId -Parameters $actionParameters -Force
  • Two action parameters

    • blobStorageAbsoluteSasUri - The storage account URI with the Shared Access Signature (SAS) token. In the PowerShell script, this value could be passed in instead of the storage key.
    • usageStartDate - The beginning date to pull data, with the end date being the current date on which the action is executed. The granularity is at the day level, so even if you add time information, it will be ignored.

Exported data - a closer look

Now let’s take a closer look at the exported data. As mentioned earlier, once the data are successfully exported, there will be two CSV files.

The virtualmachines.csv contains the following data columns:

Column name Description
SubscriptionId The subscription identifier that the lab exists in.
LabUId Unique GUID identifier for the lab.
LabName Name of the lab.
LabResourceId Fully qualified lab resource ID.
ResourceGroupName Name of the resource group that contains the VM
ResourceId Fully qualified resource ID for the VM.
ResourceUId GUID for the VM
Name Virtual machine name.
CreatedTime The date-time at which the VM was created.
DeletedDate The date-time at which the VM was deleted. If it's empty, deletion hasn't occurred, yet.
ResourceOwner Owner of the VM. If the value is empty, then it's either a claimable VM or created by a service principal.
PricingTier Pricing tier of the VM
ResourceStatus Availability state of the VM. Active, if still exists or Inactive, if the VM has been deleted.
ComputeResourceId Fully qualified virtual machine compute resource identifier.
Claimable Set to true if the VM is a claimable VM
EnvironmentId The environment resource identifier within which the Virtual machine was created in. It's empty when the VM wasn't created as part of an environment resource.
ExpirationDate Expiration date for the VM. It's set to empty, if an expiration date hasn't been set.
GalleryImageReferenceVersion Version of the VM base image.
GalleryImageReferenceOffer Offer of the VM base image.
GalleryImageReferencePublisher Publisher of the VM base image.
GalleryImageReferenceSku Sku of the VM base image
GalleryImageReferenceOsType OS type of the VM base image
CustomImageId Fully qualified ID of the VM base custom image.

The data columns contained in disks.csv are listed below:

Column name Description
SubscriptionId ID of the subscription that contains the lab
LabUId GUID for the lab
LabName Name of the lab
LabResourceId Fully qualified resource ID for the lab
ResourceGroupName Name of the resource group that contains the lab
ResourceId Fully qualified resource ID for the VM.
ResourceUId GUID for the VM
Name The name of the attached disk
CreatedTime The date and time at which the data disk was created.
DeletedDate The date and time at which the data disk was deleted.
ResourceStatus Status of the resource. Active, if the resource exists. Inactive, when deleted.
DiskBlobName Blob name for the data disk.
DiskSizeGB The size of the data disk.
DiskType Type of the data disk. 0 for Standard, 1 for Premium.
LeasedByVmId Resource ID of the VM to which the data disk has been attached.


If you are dealing with multiple labs and want to get overall information, the two key columns are the LabUID and the ResourceUId, which are the unique ids across subscriptions.

The exported data can be manipulated and visualized using tools, like SQL Server, Power BI, etc. This feature is especially useful when you want to report usage of your lab to your management team that may not be using the same Azure subscription as you do.

Next steps

See the following article: