Cloud Cost Optimization For AWS, MS Azure, Alibaba, And K8s

2022-02-18 by Pooja Shah

As an organization, you have to focus on cloud cost optimization. Those wondering what it is, let us start from the basics. As you know, the cloud offers companies unlimited scalability and lower IT costs by charging them for the resource they use.


Cloud Cost Optimization is the process through which companies can reduce their overall cloud spending by identifying mismanaged resources, reserving capacity for higher discounts, eliminating waste, and right-sizing computing services to scale. 


Even though we mentioned above that cloud companies charge customers for their resources; the reality is a bit different. For example, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, etc. charge customers for the resources they order whether they use them or not.

What is Cloud Management?

Cloud management involves monitoring a company's cloud utilization to increase cloud visibility, discover cloud cost savings opportunities, and trim unnecessary features to boost cloud performance. 

When it comes to cloud adoption, spending, infrastructure, and development, the cloud computing market has grown rapidly since the COVID-19 crisis.


In basic terms, cloud computing is all about connecting to online services from the Internet. There are many types of cloud services, ranging from simple cloud storage to cloud infrastructure platforms like Amazon Web Services. Additionally, all of your favorite streaming content is hosted in the cloud, whether it is Netflix episodes, Spotify playlists, or YouTube channels.


According to estimates, by the year 2025, there will be over 100 zettabytes of data stored in the cloud.


Why is Cloud Optimization important?

Before you talk about ways to cloud cost optimization, let us look at why cloud optimization is important in the first place- 


  • It boosts visibility - you cannot measure cloud performance unless you know your cloud architecture. Practicing cloud optimization will raise the company's awareness.
  • Reduce unnecessary cloud costs - companies can save a lot with cloud optimization.
  • It boosts cloud utilization - it involves looking for opportunities to cut off the dead weight you no longer need.
  • Improve engineer productivity - you can spend your teams’ time and skill on the right jobs that give the best productivity.


Let us look at how you can perform cloud cost optimization for AWS, MS Azure, Alibaba, and K8s

· Find Unused resources

The easiest way to bring down spending on the cloud is to look for unused and unattached resources. In most cases, the admin or the developer might use a temporary server for a particular work and later forgets to turn it off when the job is finished. Or it could be that administrator forgets to remove storage attached to instances they terminate.


No matter what service you are using, your bills will include charges for resources you once purchased but are no longer using. A cost optimization strategy would be to identify such resources and remove them.

· Focus on consolidating idle resources

Your next focus should be on idle resources. Generally, an idle computing instance will have a CPU utilization level between 1 and 5 percent. A company receives a bill for 100% of that computing instance, which is a lot more than what they should. Hence, it is essential to identify such instances and consolidate computing jobs into fewer instances. You can use features like load balancing, autoscaling, and on-demand capabilities, making you of those to scale your computing power at any time.


·  Billing and Pricing Review

Most cloud providers provide detailed information about what is being paid for. Your job should be to look at the high-level breakdown or itemization as it can be used to save cost. The highest cost will go towards computing, storage, and value-added managed services. Look for the highest spend services and set a prioritizing.


Understand the price of everything the cloud vendor offers in great detail. It is very productive because it allows better judgments about what should be purchased or avoided.

·  Use Heat maps – 

A heat map is a visual tool showing peaks and valleys in computing demand. The information can be valuable to establish start and stop times to reduce costs. The heat maps are a good indicator of whether development servers can be safely shut down on weekends. Though administrators can shut down servers manually, it is always better to leverage automation to schedule instances to stop and start the server. Using automation, you can better optimize costs.

·  Optimization scenarios

You should get a service that can provide you real-time optimization insight into normal workloads and CI/CD jobs, and provide you with optimal configuration based on cloud health and availability zone score.

·  Right size

Right-sizing is the process where you analyze computing services and modify them to the most efficient size. It is not easy to size instances correctly as there are more than 1.7 million possible combinations to choose from.


 It is not only about the server choice but also about memory, computing, graphics, database, storage capacity, throughput, and more. Right-sizing tools can recommend changes across instance families if required. It is not only about cloud optimization but also about reducing cloud costs.

· Multi-cloud vs single cloud

Some companies opt for multiple clouds in order to avoid vendor lock-in. While this is a valid strategy to increase availability and uptime, companies that rely on only one cloud provider may lose out on volume discounts.


Whether you are using AWS, MS Azure, Alibaba, or K8s, you can achieve cost savings in the cloud if you pay attention to cloud cost optimization. You have to review tradeoffs between spending, performance, reliability, redundancy, and spare capacity, looking at essential services like computers and storage.

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Pooja Shah

Pooja Shah is a Content Writer at Financesage. It is a blog where I cover financial tips related website which is working towards investors to take better financial decisions and make the best choices while buying financial things and for better financial life.

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