Microsoft has announced some new benefits available to subscribers of Visual Studio Dev Essentials, the free version of its developer tools.

The program already offers complimentary access to the Visual Studio development environment and code editors, certain cloud services, and technical support—as well as free training here at Wintellect.

As of last week, Microsoft is adding up to $300 in Azure credits to the pot. Director of developer programs Shawn Nandi had some suggestions for how to use them: “That’s enough to run a D2 Windows Virtual Machine for 95 hours a month, or try out an A3 HDInsight Cluster for 24 hours.”

The program is also adding free access to Xamarin University, where devs can “get started building native iOS, Android, and Windows Phone apps using.NET and shared C# code.”

Click here for details on the Azure offer, and to sign up for Visual Studio Dev Essentials if you haven’t already.