This is the second in a series of posts about controlling public cloud costs. The first post covered rightsizing.
You pay by the hour for the running instances that you host in the public cloud, so the less time they’re running, the better. Many types of workloads don’t need to be running 24/7, but it’s easy to forget to power them down. For example, one of our testers may spin up an Amazon EC2 instance for running vCommander that he only needs to use for testing from Monday to Friday, during working hours.
vCommander’s power schedule groups let you configure a schedule to shut down and (optionally) restart instances, so you don’t leave them running overnight or on the weekend when nobody is using the resources you’re paying for.
In the example above, I’ve created a power schedule group that shuts instances down at 7 pm each night and powers them back up at 7 am – off when the users are out of office and back on in time for them to return the next day. It’s configured to leave them powered off over the weekend. With this configuration, you’ll achieve a 65% savings in compute cost versus an instance that runs constantly. For an on-demand c4.xlarge Windows instance, this is over $150 savings each month!
For instances that must run continuously, I’m leaving them set to the default power schedule group, which takes no action unless you configure it to do so. New power schedule groups are applied to instances in much the same way that rightsizing groups are. An admin may manually apply them to existing instances. The Default Attribute policy can be configured to automatically apply power schedule groups to new instances that appear in a particular location – all instances in a VPC, for example. If you know the scheduling requirements at the time you define a service catalog entry, you can specify the power schedule group in the service blueprint; this will override the Default Attribute policy. An example of this would be a Windows desktop service in the catalog.
Ensuring your instances are powered down when they’re not needed can lead to huge savings in large public cloud deployments, and should be an integral part of your cost-savings strategy. To learn how to set it up, see Configuring VM Power Schedules in our documentation.