The enterprises’ migration to cloud computing platform has exceptionally increased in the last decade. This move has contributed significantly to the real change in the world of IT. However, companies did not notice any significant change in the cost incurred after adapting to the cloud environment.
Thus, the market saw a boom in various cloud management platforms providing integrated services for cost management. Azure from Microsoft is an integrated cloud services with agile, responsive, innovative and simple solutions. Most of the companies migrate to public cloud by disregarding the prerequisite that cost cutting depends on efficient management and automation. Hence, it is wise that the companies follow proven best practices to reduce spend in Azure and make optimization in a cost effective manner.
- Cease the usage of Zombie Assets
These are assets that are not being used but continue to run in your cloud environment. It can be in the form of idle Load Balancers or an idle SQL Database. If these assets are non-essential it is mandatory that you terminate it from your VM. Microsoft will charge if these assets are in running state.
- Upgrade to latest generation
For certain VM types, there is an option to upgrade to the latest versions. These latest versions of Azure VMs have similar price points and perform better than the older versions. To cite an example, D-series VM gives 35% faster processing for the same price.
- Delete unattached disk storage
For a VM application, Disk Storage acts as the local block storage. The Disk Storage remains active even though a VM’s performance is terminated. Microsoft continues to charge for the date despite the fact that it is no longer being used. The risk of having unattached storage is high because of the dynamic nature of cloud computing. Azure bill can be brought down drastically if you repeatedly check for unattached Disk Storage in your cloud infrastructure.
- Delete aged Snapshots
To create point-in-time recovery many companies use Disk Storage and Snapshots on Blob. But you need to closely monitor Snapshot costs to avoid huge billing amount. The organizations can get Snapshots back in action by monitoring the cost per usage of VM. It is very important to ensure that they don’t act out of control and increase spend in Azure.
- Right size Disk Storage
Capacity, IOPS, and throughput are the most important factors to be considered with Disk Storage. Deleting unattached disk storage is one of the ways to bring down the cost incurred by VM. Also, you can find out which disks are taking the maximum Disk Storage and thereby modify it to gain potential cost reduction.
- Right size Virtual Machines
As a part of cost cutting initiative, VM right sizing is very important. The developers will spin up new VMs that may be larger than necessary. This will help them to gain extra headroom since they don’t know the performance requirements of the new workload. This can lead to the increase in the cost of VM. Hence it is important to check CPU utilization, memory utilization, disk utilization, and network in/out utilization. Right sizing all the VMs can help cost reduction without harnessing the performance of the applications.
- Stop and Start VMs within a scheduled time
Depending on the month in which you are running VMs, the bill of Azure varies. For the applications running 24/7, Microsoft charges 672 to 744 hours per VM. So it is wise if you can stop your VMs on non-working days like holidays and weekends. This can reduce the cost incurred by your organization. If it is flexible work environment and global teams work on the same VM, then you can just stop VMs outside normal work timings. It is always advisable to stop and start VMs on a specific scheduled time.
All these best practices are not just one-time process. You must continuously do it to optimize the cost-efficiency of the cloud environment.