Tuesday, March 31, 2020

How To: Reduce Cloud Bill in Half for Any Cloud Provider

“But you said, we would be only paying what we use then how come my Cloud bill is way more than my on-prem cost?”
Managements are now asking above question from Cloud Operations team all across the globe as recession looms, revenues drop, businesses almost to a standstill, budgets shrunk and economic outlook becoming grimmer by the day.

Above statement about Pay-as-you-go is still true about the cloud but it doesn’t happen just by migrating to cloud. It has to be configured, monitored, managed and audited. If you start a virtual machine in the cloud, use it for 9 to 5, leave it running until next morning, then you will be charged for 24 hours instead of just from 9 to 5 where you were supposedly “using” it. Running in cloud means using, and you pay for it. Same is also true for managed database services in the cloud.
Following are top 3 things you can do right now to significantly reduce your cloud bill.
  1. Control Resource Creation:
Resource Creation privileges must be given to a handful team in your organization, and this team should be doing it through pipeline after proper approvals. So revoke resource creation rights from everyone else, and let one team be doing it through pipeline with a single click.
2. Tag Resources
Tag your resources, and no resource in cloud should live without following tags:
StartTime, StopTime, LifeSpan
These tags are self-explanatory. StartTime will tell, when this resource will start, when it will stop, and how long this will remain in cloud. You can either write your own serverless functions to enforce these timings, or use any third party or cloud-native solution to implement it. (Drop me a line, if you want further guidance on this). This point is a game-changer for your bill especially for VMs and managed databases.
3. Remove the Clutter
No matter how little it costs; if its not needed or you cannot find the owner, just delete it. Orphan persistent disk volumes, ownerless compute images, dangling object stores, and all stray services must be stopped and deleted.
If followed, these 3 points can reduce your cloud bill to half or even more in any cloud provider setup. Cloud’s honeymoon period is over, and with all this belt tightening around, its time to save.

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