Amazon Web Services is probably the biggest IaaS provider and a formidable cloud computing resource. While its sheer size and computing resources are best in class and the support is spot on, the pricing is one of the major user retaining reasons for AWS’s great success.
Apart from having an amazing pricing policy that users adore, AWS actually releases documents on how to optimize server costs and how to use the resources efficiently to make the most of what you use and pay for. On Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud, philosophy on pricing is simple. At the end of each month, you pay only for what you use, and you can start or stop using a product at any time. We take a look at cost optimization on Amazon Web Services.
Pay as you go: You might have heard this term a lot, especially when you are a continuous user of the AWS cloud server. Pay as you go is a simple concept – No minimum commitments or long-term contracts required. You replace your upfront capital expense with low variable cost and pay only for what you use. There is no need to pay upfront for excess capacity or get penalized for under-planning; this is one of the foremost service side cost optimization embedded into the pricing policy of AWS.
Pay less when you reserve: For certain products, you can invest in reserved capacity. In that case, you pay a low upfront fee and get a significantly discounted hourly rate, which results in overall savings between 42% and 71% (depending on the type of instance you reserve) over equivalent on-demand capacity.
EC2 reserved instances optimization: Checks your Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) computing consumption history and calculates an optimal number of Partial Upfront Reserved Instances. Recommendations are based on the previous calendar month’s hour-by-hour usage aggregated across all consolidated billing accounts. It is an important aspect of cost optimizations that lets you speculate the number of hours usage you need this month based on previous month’s aggregate.
Low Utilization Amazon EC2 Instances: This utility checks the number of EC2 instances that are running on less than 10% run capacity or usage time. It reports instances that were running at any time during the last 14 days and alerts you if the daily CPU utilization was 10% or less and network I/O was 5 MB or less on 4 or more days. Running instances generate hourly usage charges.
Underutilized Amazon EBS Volumes: Checks Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS) volume configurations and warns when volumes appear to be underused. Charges begin when a volume is created. If a volume remains unattached or has very low write activity (excluding boot volumes) for a period of time, the volume is probably not being used and can be discarded by the user.
If none of the utilities and pricing options (also the ones not discussed in this article) works for you, you can go for the custom pricing option available with the AWS customer support. You can use the AWS Simple Monthly Calculator to estimate your monthly bill. The calculator provides per service cost breakdown, as well as an aggregate monthly estimate. You can also use the calculator to see an estimation and breakdown of costs for common solutions.