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Cost Optimization

Using Our E-book to Save More with AWS Reserved Instances

By Gavin Cahill on September 21, 2018
Our new ultimate guide to AWS Reserved Instances (RIs) is here, updated with new AWS data and new RI strategies to increase your cost-saving power with RIs.

At first glance, RIs can seem extremely complicated. But you don’t have to be afraid of them. When used correctly, they can be the one of most powerful cost-saving tools AWS provides. Any company looking to lower their cloud costs should take the time to get truly familiar with RIs.

And that’s why we wrote this guide. It’s here to walk you through the RI basics, show you how they work, help you calculate your RI needs and show you how to manage your RI portfolio going forward.

We’re very excited about our updated e-book, The Complete Guide to AWS Reserved Instances: How to Plan, Purchase & Get the Most Saving Power from Your RIs. It goes over things like:

How RIs Work

When you get down to it, RIs are a clever little concept that rewards you for good planning. An RI is a coupon that gives you a discounted rate on your use when you commit to a longer period of usage hours with a specific set of instance attributes. It’s a bit like buying in bulk and getting a discount.

The trick to getting the most savings out of them is in matching up your bulk purchases to your actual cloud use. That’s where understanding how RIs are applied and matching that to your infrastructure is essential for purchasing. The e-book goes over the basics of RIs, how they’re applied and what you need to know to get massive savings from them.

Giving You a Model for RI Planning

A good RI plan is essential for maximizing your savings, and it needs to be one that matches how RIs are applied to your actual cloud usage. This can get tricky, since an RI can be applied to multiple instances, but only apply to one at a time. So a plan has to take into account all instances that you might run and would fall under the RI.

To help you with this, the e-book goes over the Waterline Model. Using this model, you can chart your usage of similar instances over a given time period, then use that chart to instantly see how many RIs you should buy depending on your savings waterline. It’s a versatile and flexible model developed with Atlassian, and one they still use with Cloudability to this day. In addition to the Waterline Model, there are solid tips gained from working with thousands of clients over the last seven years.

Modifying Standard RIs and Exchanging Convertible RIs

Some companies shy away from RIs because they don’t want to get locked into system requirements. But RIs are actually more flexible than you might think. Standard RIs can be modified by a few very key factors within their same instance family. Convertible RIs are even more flexible because they can be exchanged for any new RI that’s the same value or higher.

The actual modification or exchange is always free, but there are some restrictions and possible costs if the exchange values don’t match up. We walk you through the options so you understand what you can do and how you can get the most flexibility out of your RIs.

Managing Your RI Portfolio

Saving with RIs isn’t a one-time thing. RIs are just one part of a large continuous cloud cost optimization culture that needs to be created in every company using the cloud. RIs need to be monitored regularly, then modified or purchased according to your company’s use. Any underutilized RIs need to be addressed, and quickly. Most importantly, these efforts need to be spread across your whole company.

It’s a lot to take in, but don’t worry. We share key tips and techniques that give you a solid place to start with your RI portfolio management. We also show you how over time, you can adjust your management tactics to fit your company’s individual needs.

Get the RI Answers and Tactics You Need to Unleash Your Saving Power

Nothing can save you money on your AWS bill like Reserved Instances. Using the strategies outlined in our new RI e-book and the Cloudability platform, our customers routinely save at least 30% on their cloud spend. Interestingly enough, most of them end up investing that money back into their company by hiring more developers, increasing cloud resources or making other investments. In effect, using RIs and Cloudability helps them dramatically increase their budgets without actually getting any more investment.

Download the new e-book and start getting more from your cloud spend!

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