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Cloud Cost Optimization Cloud FinOps

Cloud FinOps FAQs

Cloud has become an integral component for successful business operations. However, alongside the benefits of cloud computing come the complexities of managing costs effectively. Enter Cloud FinOps, a discipline aimed at optimizing cloud spending while maximizing value. It continues to be one of the top cloud priorities in 2024 and the coming years. As organizations embark on this new journey, numerous questions arise regarding FinOps practices. This article covers a few with responses from our cloud finops experts themselves Kathick Perumal, Product Engineering Head and Mukesh Kumar, our Product Architect who holds profound experience in tackling cloud finops challenges of our clients.

1. What is Cloud FinOps?

Cloud FinOps is a practise which enables organization to maximize the value derived from their cloud resources spending.

2. What does Cloud FinOps do?

It offers multiple benefits to the cloud businesses. In a nutshell, it enables developers, operations, finance, and other business teams in comprehending and managing costs associated with cloud computing.
Suggested Reading: What are the benefits of cloud finops?

3. Why is Cloud FinOps important?

Cloud finops is vital for various reasons. It is crucial in solving some of the key challenges like,

  • There is a lack of accountability and control over the cloud spending.
  • Absence of continuous cloud resource tracking and monitoring
  • Failure to implement optimal practices for cost reduction.
  • Delay in problem identification and rectification costs huge.
  • Loss of control over cloud asset growth as the organisation scale up.
  • Difficulty in finding the best cloud resource alternatives.

4. How Cloud Service Providers help in Cloud Cost Optimization?

CSPs do give us a lot of options through which we can realize considerable savings.

  • Pay-as-You-Go Pricing: Cloud services often follow a pay-as-you-go model, allowing users to pay only for the resources they consume. This flexibility helps in cost optimization by avoiding upfront costs for unused resources.
  • Reserved Instances: Cloud providers offer reserved instances or commitments, where users can commit to a specific number of resources for a term, often at a discounted rate compared to on-demand pricing.
  • Spot Instances: Some cloud providers offer spot instances, allowing users to bid for unused compute capacity at a lower cost. This can be cost-effective for certain workloads that are flexible in their resource requirements.
  • Auto-Scaling: Cloud platforms allow for automatic scaling of resources based on demand. This ensures that you only use and pay for the resources you need when you need them, helping to optimize costs.
  • Resource Monitoring and Management Tools: Cloud providers offer tools that allow users to monitor resource usage and costs in real-time. This visibility helps in identifying areas for optimization and cost savings.
  • Discounts and Incentive Programs: Cloud providers often provide discounts for long-term commitments, volume usage, or specific use cases. Additionally, they may offer incentive programs to encourage cost-conscious usage.
  • Cost Management Services: Cloud providers offer cost management and budgeting tools that help users set, track, and manage their spending. Alerts and reports assist in keeping costs within predefined budgets.
  • Global Presence: Cloud providers have a global network of data centers. Utilizing resources in regions where costs are lower or taking advantage of content delivery networks (CDNs) can result in cost savings.

5. What are the easiest ways to control cloud costs?

While there are many, enterprises miss to leverage some of the simple options available in hand,

  • Wherever possible, use reserved instances rather than pay-as-you-go instances.
  • Remove unused or idle resources by continuously monitoring the resources all the time.
  • Optimize the application architecture to maximize data ingress and egress. Ingress is free. But egress is chargeable based on the size of the data you transfer.

6. Is it possible to save money without compromising the performance?

Yes, a lot of cost savings can be achieved by continuous monitoring and optimizing your cloud usage for orphans and unused resources. Beyond reducing you can even witness improving performance levels.

In CloudCADI, we monitor for Orphan/Unused Disk, Public IP Address, load balancer, SQL servers, NAT gateway, Application Gateway, etc.

7. What are the trivial things that impact largely in cloud costs?

Well, there are many. They might seem small at the early stages of cloud adoption. The team’s focus will be more on the project, deliverables, and deadlines forgetting the fact that every resource they install/download start accumulating the bills either they use it to its fullest or not.

Examples are, leaving unused resources that are not actively contributing to operations, inefficient resource sizing, neglecting to properly tag and organize resources for cost allocation, etc. These can bring impacts like, wasting money on excessive resources or experiencing performance issues due to insufficient resources, difficulties in tracking and attributing costs to specific projects or departments.

8. What are the possible ways to overcome cloud costs?

  • Setting up notifications for out-of-the-ordinary spending or usage habits.
  • Optimizing cloud resource allocation for maximum efficiency.
  • Making use of rightsizing approaches to match resources to actual demands.

You can rely on CloudCADI for all these needs. It does a phenomenal job.

9. Finops Consultants or FinOps Tools?

The choice between FinOps consultants and FinOps tools depends on various factors, including the specific needs and circumstances of the client’s organization.

FinOps consultants bring in-depth knowledge and expertise in FinOps practices to the organisation. They can provide personalized approach by taking a holistic view of the organization needs.

While on the other hand, Finops tools brings multiple advantages, like automating certain aspects of cloud cost management, make the process less human error prone, continuous monitoring, detailed break downs and reports.

10. Why FinOps is an organization wide practice?

We always insist this to our customers. FinOps is not constrained to the cloud engineering division, it’s  an organization wide cross functional collaborative practice. It involves all three hierarchies – engineering team, operations team, and finance team. Every stakeholder requires a solid information on the cloud usage, performance, and cost in their terms. So that they become accountable of their choices and can map it to their relevant goals.

Do you have any more questions? Write to us: Contact Amadis Experts

Authors

Product Engineering Head
Karthick Perumal - Product Eng. Head
Product Eng. Lead Amadis
Mukesh Kumar - Product Architect
Categories
Cloud Cost Optimization

Kubernetes Cost Optimization – Best Practices (Part 2)

As businesses continue to embrace Kubernetes for its scalability and agility, cost management becomes increasingly critical. We understand that managing cloud costs can be complex, especially in large and dynamic containerized environments. That’s why we’re here to provide you with practical insights and actionable tips to take control of your Kubernetes spending. In our previous blog on Kubernetes Cost Optimization Best Practices – Part 1, we covered the common cost optimization challenges and a few solutions. Let’s see a few more,

Taints & Tolerances

In Kubernetes, “taints” and “tolerations” are mechanisms that can be used strategically to optimize costs by efficiently managing the allocation of workloads to nodes within your cluster. They act as filters in the Kubernetes world. Some of its uses in optimization are,

Efficient Utilization:

Nodes can be ‘tainted’ based on their utilization or capacity, such as CPU or memory usage. This allows you to mark nodes that are underutilized or overutilized. Whereas pods that are designed to scale horizontally can have ‘tolerations’ for nodes with low utilization. When additional resources are needed, more pods can be scheduled on those nodes to efficiently utilize available resources without provisioning new nodes.

Cost Optimization:

You can create custom ‘taints’ to represent various cost-related attributes, such as GPU availability, network bandwidth, or specific hardware types. Also pods can be configured with ‘tolerations’ that align with your custom cost-based policies. This ensures that workloads are deployed on nodes that match their requirements while considering cost factors.

Example:
Let’s say, your web application includes a background processing component that handles non-critical tasks like generating reports or processing non-urgent user requests. These tasks can tolerate occasional interruptions or delays without impacting the overall user experience.

For this case, Taint the nodes that are running on spot instances to indicate their cost-effectiveness but potential for interruptions.

Result: This taint marks these nodes as suitable for running cost-sensitive workloads.

To schedule less critical pods on spot instance nodes, define tolerations as below,

Result: These tolerations allow the pods to be scheduled on nodes with the “spot-instance” taint.

If a spot instance is reclaimed by the cloud provider, Kubernetes will automatically reschedule these pods on other available nodes, maintaining the desired level of service while optimizing costs.

Sleep Mode

You don’t need all workloads or resources to run 24/7. Especially during non-business hours and weekends. CPU, memory, or storage resources rack up the bills when they are left idle. Putting them into sleep mode with Cronjobs during non-business hours or HPA efficiently scales down the environment when not in use and scales up automatically when needed.

Example: If you want to put your Dev environment to ‘sleep mode’, here’s the code to scale them down at 5.00 P.M. everyday.

Node Pools

Node pools involves grouping nodes with similar characteristics like CPU, memory, etc. This helps in efficient resource management which in turn drives Kubernetes cost optimization. Different cloud providers offer a wide range of VM instance types optimized for various use cases. When you explore the offerings of your chosen cloud provider GCP, AWS, Azure, etc. you can identify instance types that align with your workload requirements. Pay attention to factors like CPU, memory, storage, network performance, and cost.

Kubernetes Cost Monitoring Tools

At Amadis as we always insist, spending is not a bottleneck as long as you SPEND RIGHT on your cloud resources. Spending right starts from analyzing your Kubernetes environment which is possible with Kubernetes cost monitoring tools.

CloudCADI simplifies your complex Kubernetes cost optimization process in a few clicks. Some of its key features are,

Pod-level showback: From your native cloud providers’ bills, you can get the charges of the clusters overall. Whereas in CloudCADI, you have the flexibility to drill down the charges at a lowest possible unit level – pod.

Node resizing:  CloudCADI never stops with the Kubernetes cost and utilization overview. Furthermore, it gives intelligent recommendations on how to alter your resources with choices and savings opportunities. Cloud administrators can simply leverage these options rather than manually evaluating the options.

By implementing these cost optimization tricks and regularly reviewing your Kubernetes environment for inefficiencies, you can effectively manage your infrastructure costs while ensuring optimal performance and resource utilization.

SPEND RIGHT on cloud with CloudCADI today.

Categories
Cloud Cost Optimization Cloud FinOps

List of Best Cloud Cost Optimization Tools 2024

Enterprises globally prefer to use cloud cost optimization tools to maximize their cloud investments. While certain organizations use native tools provided by AWS, GCP, and Azure others tend to opt for homegrown tools or third-party tools. Few even mix up to reduce cloud spending. According to a report from report of the FinOps Foundation, enterprises use an average of 3.7 tools for their cloud cost optimization process. Let’s see in this article a few of the best cloud cost optimization tools you can evaluate for 2024.

1. CloudCADI

CloudCADI is a one suite cloud cost optimization tool offered by Amadis Technologies Inc., USA. It got you covered for all your cloud FinOps needs. It makes the day of cloud practitioners easy with an effective dashboard, and precise reports with which allows show back to the lowest possible unit and start restructuring almost immediately. This tool comes with need-of-the-hour features like,

Cloud Native – It leverages the power of cloud features like scalability, elasticity, etc. facilitating faster deployment

Externalized Business Rule Engine – It allows the user to play around with multiple cloud assets recommendations, so the user has the flexibility to choose as per their infrastructure and project needs.

Non-intrusive nature – It stays within your cloud environment eliminating the need to worry about the security breach and third-party intrusion

Role-based data access – Customizing the cost optimization data visibility based on roles (Engineering team, Finance team, etc.) is simple with Cloud CADI.

Showback- It allows you to drill down and find the root cause of the cost overruns to take immediate actions.

End-to-End Automation- It facilitates the seamless integration of ticketing tools like ServiceNow.

Alerts- It has customizable reporting& alert capabilities to give visibility over IaaS/SaaS/PaaS services and assets, resulting in a better understanding of activities in the cloud

Clients – Johnson & Johnson, Unisys, GSM Outdoors, Exafluence, DigiKey

Founded – 2019

HQ: New Jersey, USA

Other Tools

‘Finops Foundation‘ is a non-profit organization that was established to promote best practices, standards, and education in the emerging field of cloud financial management, recently released a report on “Different Usage Types of FinOps Tools” (ref. figure below). Let’s see some of the tools mentioned,

2. AWS Cost Explorer

A native product of AWS cloud service provider helps to visualize, understand, and manage your AWS costs and usage over time. Few key features are, 

    • Monthly costs report – AWS Cost Explorer includes a default report that helps you visualize the costs and usage associated with your top five cost-accruing AWS services and gives you a detailed breakdown of all services in the table view.

    • Hourly & resource level granularity – AWS Cost Explorer helps you visualize, understand, and manage your AWS costs and usage over a daily or monthly granularity.

    • Savings plan reports – It provides you with two reports to help analyse your Savings Plans purchases and saving opportunities – Savings Plans utilization report and Savings Plans coverage report.

    • Reservation reports – The reservation utilization report visualizes your aggregate reservation utilization and allows you to set a custom reservation utilization target. The reservation coverage report visualizes your overall reservation coverage and allows you to set a custom reservation coverage target.

Few Clients – Verisk, Airbnb, Arista

Founded – 2014

HQ: Seattle, Washington, United States.

3. Cloudability (Apptio)