Netlify docs say Level 0 supports background functions; this error says "Nope"

I have a Starter (Level 0?) account and am unable to deploy a site with a background function (works ok in dev mode). Here is the error:

  "name": "JSONHTTPError",
  "status": 422,
  "json": {
    "code": 422,
    "message": "Background Functions not allowed by team plan"

Your site documentation says otherwise.

So which is it? Did I waste two days of my time developing and testing a background function that I can’t deploy?

Ouch, agreed that that is quite confusing indeed. I’ve marked your question to be handled by the Netlify staff

CC @fool @verythorough

Okay, thank you for looking into it.

Hi, @JeffML. We do highlight that background functions are limited to Pro and higher plans on the page you linked to above:

The Pro plan limitation of background functions is stated on that page.

The documentation page for background functions also has a warning quoted below:

This feature is in BETA and may not be available on all plans.

The “plans” link above takes you to the section in the screenshot below:

We do make it clear this is a Pro (or higher) only feature.

Then what does the green checkmark for background functions in the Level 0 column suppose to mean? Why is it there?

Hi @JeffML,

It’s important to note that Level 0 is not the Starter plan. The levels are in reference to Netlify’s metered features, they have different levels depending on usage. In this screenshot:

Level 0 is the first usage level. So for Pro or higher plans, they can use Background functions.

In the second screenshot that Luke posted, you’ll see under Starter that there is no green checkmark since Background functions are not available on the Starter plan at any level.

I see: the Functions Level pricing is in addition to the Plan Pricing, But the Pricing Page obscures that connection. The reader has to draw conclusions about what is being said. At the Plan feature list, I see:

So is states that there is a $25+ charge when 125k invocations are exceeded, but you have to scroll down a ways to see that that $25+ charge is tied to Function Level pricing.

So, yes: if the reader makes that connection to the Pricing plan features, then it becomes clearer. But it probably should state in the plan features for serverless functions to see “(Function Level pricing, below)” or a hash link or something. The reader shouldn’t have to be relied on to make the connection between Plans and Function Levels themselves. It could be clearly stated in the plan features that one has to look at the Function Level pricing to determine how additional costs are calculated. Otherwise one is liable to assume (as I did) that Levels are tied to plans (three Levels, three Plans, so…).

Thanks for your patience. I get it now.

Thanks so much for the detailed feedback, Jeff! I made sure our pricing team saw it.