Cloud Resources

Save On Clouds enables you to take control of your cloud usage and minimise the cost of running a platform on AWS, Azure or Google Cloud Platform.

At the moment Save On Clouds can help you reduce your costs by optimising the utilization of the below resource types:

  • Virtual Machines. e.g. AWS EC2 instances.
  • Databases
  • Scaling Groups or Scaling Sets

What cloud resources can be managed and how much saving they can bring somewhat depends on the capabilities and pricing policies of the cloud provider.

For example, in case of Azure, even if you stop (or de-allocate) an Azure SQL instance, you will still get billed for it. That means that we do not fetch your databases from Azure as it will not help you with saving on your database costs.

Save On Clouds can manage the below SQL types in Amazon Web Services:

  • My SQL
  • SQL Server
  • Oracle
  • Aurora clusters
  • Postgress (the regional type).

And the below SQL databases can be managed on Google Cloud Platform:

  • MySQL Gen 1
  • MySQL Gen 2
  • SQL Server

Obviously, it is not possible to STOP server less databases such as AWS DynamoDb, or AWS Aurora when it is configured to run as Serverless.

Virtual Machines such as Azure VMs and AWS EC2 instances can be managed by Save On Clouds. What you may see in the Cloud Resources page might be slightly different between AWS and Azure (and Google Cloud Platform) and that is due to the fact each provider has their own way of managing virtual machines.

When you fetch the virtual machine instances of your AWS, Azure or GCP Account, you may see the instances that are part of an Auto Scaling Group. In that case you cannot stop or start the instances individually.

In such a scenario you will see an icon next to the instance which indicates that the instance is managed by an ASG.

A virtual machine instance that is a member of a Scaling Set.

If you use Azure, you will not see the instances that are member of an Virtual Machine Scaling Set.

Costs

When resources or fetched, we calculate their monthly cost too. Cost and pricing information is provided by the cloud providers. For example we use Azure Pricing Cards to estimate the monthly cost of a Virtual Machine.

The cost that you see on the Cloud Resources page might be slightly different from the cost that you see on your invoices and bills. The reason is that, we only care about the cost that can be reduced! After all, Save On Clouds is all about cost savings!

Example 1:

You buy a reserved instances on AWS and you pay for 3 years upfront. This instance also comes with Windows 2019 Data Center and SQL Server 2017 Standard Edition licnces.

In this example, the upfront cost cannot be reduces so it will not incur any savings when you stop your instances. Likewise, your SQL Server licensing cost may not be based on the usage time so, again, stopping your EC2 instance may not reduce the licensing cost.

The cost that you will see in the cloud resources, for this instance, will be the cost of the instance that can be reduced .

Example 2:

In Google Cloud, each virtual machine’s cost is calculated based on the amount of CPU, Ram, Network usage, Disk size and so forth.

Some of these components will not be bulled if you stop the virtual machine but some others, such as a disk, will still appear in your bills (as a cost!). In this case, we do not include the disk’s cost in the calculated cost.

Cost information in Cloud Resources is for you to estimate how much you may save and which resource is the most costly one. This information has no impact on your bills and is only for your information.

We also use the cost to calculate the projected savings and the previous savings in the Reports page.

Managing Instances

To see the details of each instance, simply click on its name (the first column). This will bring up a window which displays Tags (or Labels) as well as the metadata.

Metadata of a MySQL instance on Google Cloud Platform

You can also see the location and the current state of the instance in the Location and Status columns.

If an instance can be started, you will see a Start button. Likewise, you will see a Stop button if an instance can be stopped.

An instance cannot be started or stopped if:

  • They are being created (or provisioned)
  • They are being deleted or terminated
  • They are virtual machines which are managed by Scaling Group/Sets

When you click on Start or Stop buttons, those buttons will turn to progress indicators! Wait for about 30 seconds and the instance will automatically will get updated with the new status. At this point, a notification will appear above the resources list too.

The progress indicator
Notification is received from the server, confirming that a virtual machine has been started.

While stopping and starting resources manually is a way of managing their utilization, it’s best to use Environments and Schedules to maximise your savings.

Please read the Schedules and Environments pages for more information.

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