Costs are an important part of business, but it’s even more important to know the tricks to reducing them in the most practical ways. Microsoft Azure can be used to reduce the cost of your cloud computing.
Azure is a managed service that includes more than 200 services and supports all major operating systems, programming languages, and tools. All these features allow users to focus on their business processes while Microsoft takes care of the infrastructure needs.
With Microsoft Azure, there are several management tools that can assist you in keeping those costs down like the Azure Cost Management and Billing and Azure Pricing Calculator tools, which allow you to monitor and analyse your Azure bill, set budgets and distribute funds to teams and projects, and estimate Azure project costs. But there are other things that YOU could be doing to streamline your spend.
1. Resize or shutdown underutilised resources
Storage costs money, but if you notice that your Azure storage costs seem unnaturally high, it could be because you are paying to store unused or underutilised resources, such as virtual hard disks (VHDs). Often, unused resources come from previous Azure services which were used to run experiments and no longer needed, or services which have been replaced at some point but never removed whereas underutilised resources are those that sit on the bench more often than they are used. It is possible that your Azure storage could be filled with unused and underutilised resources which you are unnecessarily paying for.
To take control of your storage and reduce your Azure storage costs, you need to locate those services within your Azure subscription that fall into these categories and either remove them or start increasing usage. With the Azure Advisor, you will be able to identify idle VMs, ExpressRoute circuits and other resources of this kind as well as receive resource shutdown recommendations to get a better idea of how much could be saved.
2. Configure autoscaling
In business, demand changes regularly, so Azure has incorporated an autoscale function. Autoscale is an integrated feature of many services – including Cloud – which allows applications to work at peak performance despite any changes in demand. Rather than waiting for changes to happen before you act, autoscale allows you to stay ahead of the curve by scheduling for probable changes. Therefore, if you notice that you have surges of traffic at certain times of the day or week, you can schedule aggressive auto-scaling targets during this time to cover it, or similarly, if holidays are approaching and you know that a traffic surge that could impact the performance of your app or site is imminent, you can organise more virtual machines in advance to handle the influx.
3. Choose the Azure compute service that fits
Building and deploying cloud solutions is easy with Azure, but those solutions should be optimised to get the complete cost reduction benefits. So, when picking the right Azure compute service, you need to find out which services offer the best value for your business. Some of the services that you should consider are:
This service is ideal for high-performance computing tasks and workflows. It provides a managed service for running large-scale parallel jobs that do not require interactive user input.
This service is perfect for event-driven scenarios such as user interactions, data transformations, and analytics.
This service offers a flexible and scalable way to run applications in the cloud. VMs are available in a range of sizes, configurations, and prices, suitable for most organizations’ IaaS needs.
Azure Database Services:
Services like this are convenient for developers as they can create relational databases in just a few clicks. It provides a quick and easy way to connect, manage and monitor data. Three key features of the service are SQL Server, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.
4. Utilise the Azure Cost Management feature
The Azure Cost Management feature is a very powerful tool that allows you to stay on top of the costs associated with your Azure resources. The new feature lets you perform custom accounting and forecasting for your Azure services, accurately keep track of resource usage costs and even use it as an invaluable analytical tool.
The Cost Management feature is great for providing a detailed overview of costs by service type, region, cost type, and more. These statistics can be broken down even further to provide you with a total cost per service type and more. You can also set up alerts to notify you of potential problems that could lead to overages or “bill shock” in the future.
5. Reserve instances for consistent workloads
In the fast-paced world of cloud hosting, where there is always a need to make sure that your costs are kept at a minimum, one of the most effective ways to do so is by reserving instances for specific workloads that are known to cause spikes in CPU usage.
The benefits of reserving instances are two-fold: first, it reduces the need for human intervention and second, it ensures that your costs will not go up on instances with sporadic workloads. What does this mean to you? It means that by reserving instances today, you save money and reduce the need for human intervention come crunch time.
6. Get more with the Azure Hybrid Benefit
The Azure Hybrid Benefit is an excellent way to save money for organizations that have a mix of on-premises and cloud-based workloads. Organizations can take advantage of the Azure Hybrid Benefit when they are migrating their workloads to the cloud or simply want to enjoy the benefits of cost savings.
With the Azure Hybrid Benefit, customers are given the opportunity to ensure that their data is stored in an environment that is the best fit for their needs. This can be accomplished by optimizing resources and reducing costs while still retaining complete control over where data is stored.
The Azure Hybrid Benefit is available in both classic and newer versions of Windows Server, including Windows Server 2016 Standard Edition, Enterprise Edition, and Datacentre Edition.
Reap the rewards of cost reductions
The cloud is not just a technological convenience. It is an essential business strategy that allows companies to reduce their costs and increase their revenue, and the Microsoft Azure cloud services are the most popular among businesses because they provide low-cost, reliable, and scalable solutions for businesses of all sizes. There are a lot of benefits that Microsoft Azure provides to its customers including the reduction of capital expenditures and operating expense, reduced IT costs, increased data security, and improved productivity.
So, if you’d like to find out more about how you can unlock financial rewards with Microsoft Azure, contact the team at Linktech Australia.