Azure cost optimization for your Massachusetts’ business

Office - Stock photography

Cloud spending is on the rise, and it’s time to start taking measures to save money. If you’re not already on board, then you should be, because Azure is one of the most important cloud-based assets in the digital age. But until you take the measures below, you’ll continue to see skyrocketing costs and poor performance. That’s where Azure cost optimization comes in.

Cloud cost optimization is essential for businesses that want to save money on their Azure cloud spending. It helps reduce costs by identifying and optimizing your Microsoft Azure cloud services without sacrificing performance. So, here’s how you can reduce your cloud costs in Azure.

Look for under-utilized resources

If you’re not using your cloud resources to their full extent, consider scaling them down or shutting them off temporarily. If you’re not utilizing a resource because it’s too expensive, then resize the resource to meet your needs. This is an easy way to avoid unnecessary and costly Azure expenses. You can find any under-utilized resources by using the Azure Resource Manager.

To resize or shutdown under-utilized resources, use Azure CLI, which is an open-source command-line interface for Azure that helps you manage all your Azure resources.

It may also be beneficial to monitor what resources are being used throughout the day, month, and year to give you a better overview of your resource usage. The best way to do this is through cost monitoring tools like the Azure Resource Explorer.

In this tool, you can find out which Azure resources are being consumed and how much they’re costing you. You can also find out when each resource was created and its current status is, so you know when it’s coming up for renewal. To monitor cost usage, records of on-premises data centers are also helpful in determining current resource usage and potential savings opportunities, so you can effectively reduce costs on your Azure bill.

Use Azure Cost Management feature

It’s important to make sure that you have access to the Azure Cost Management feature. This feature is a crucial part of your cloud computing strategy, because it enables you to track and compare your costs over time.

In addition, this feature helps you review other cost-saving measures you could implement, such as using less memory in your virtual machines, more efficiently utilizing storage space, and reducing the number of virtual machines deployed.

Get the Azure Hybrid Benefit

The Azure Hybrid Benefit is a unique subscription that allows you to have one subscription for your on-premises application and another subscription for your Azure cloud resources. In other words, the hybrid benefit allows you to get the best of both worlds – the benefits of the cloud and the benefits of an on-premises application. This can help you save money, because the cost of maintaining two separate subscriptions is much more expensive than maintaining one.

If you’re curious about how this works, here’s a simple example:

Let’s say your company has 100 users with 2TB/2core Cloud VMs. At $20 per month, that comes out to $200/month. If you were to pay for these VM instances on-premises, it would cost $300/month just to maintain them. That means your company would be paying an extra $100/month just to maintain their own infrastructure; plus, another chunk of change if they wanted to upgrade or expand those numbers anytime in the near future. If they had instead opted into the Azure Hybrid Benefit at $15/month, they would only be spending an additional $50/month, which is significantly less than what it would cost if they maintained their own servers from scratch.

Additionally, as soon as someone adds a new VM instance or storage account, Azure will spread the costs across both subscriptions automatically. In other words, even if you didn’t have a subscription before and now have both on-premises and cloud needs, Azure will take care of spreading those costs as long as they are within two subscriptions’ budgets-so there’s no need to worry!

Choose the right Azure Compute services

A big part of Azure cost optimization relies on you having chosen the right compute service for your needs. Before you choose the Azure compute service for your business, you’ll need to do some research. There are three key factors to consider:

The cost is an obvious factor that needs to be considered before choosing a service, but when you’re deciding which services are right for your company, there are a few things to keep in mind:

Apart from cost, performance is also crucial to consider before selecting a compute service. This includes what kind of tasks your business performs on a daily basis and how important performance is relative to other aspects, such as cost and size. If this is not important to your business, then Azure Compute Services might not be for you.

The size of the company is another factor that’s worth considering when choosing a compute service. If your business has fewer than 10 employees, then more affordable options might work best for your company because they provide more flexibility than larger sized companies that have more stringent requirements for processing power or storage space. However, if your company has more than 10 employees, then it would make sense to select one of the larger sized Azure compute services because they offer higher levels of performance and computing power at a cheaper price per month compared with smaller cloud services.

Azure offers a range of compute services to fit a variety of business needs, but the most popular are:

Azure Virtual Machines

The standard offering for most developers. They provide a virtual OS, along with RAM and storage, that can be used to run applications. For example, web applications can run using a web server such as Apache or IIS.

Azure Container Service

Can be used to run various types of applications, such as web apps or databases. The Azure container service is particularly useful for testing and deployment scenarios because it provides a way to run the same code on different platforms without having to make any changes to application logic.

Azure App Service

Is a web application platform, which can be used to host simple web applications. They provide a pay-as-you-go model and a flexible environment that can scale up and down as needed.

Azure Service Fabric

Is an application platform that allows organizations to build highly available, scalable, and reliable applications with multiple services (such as messaging queues) that work together as a cohesive unit. Distributed systems are often referred to as microservices.

Azure Batch

Is a fully managed batch service that allows you to run jobs in Azure. Batch is optimized for running large workloads and can handle a wide range of jobs, including compute-intensive and memory intensive workflows. It supports both batch and stream processing, with the ability to scale up and down as required.

Configure autoscaling

Autoscaling is an Azure feature that can help you save on Azure-based computing costs for your company. You can set a baseline cost and then automatically scale up or down based on the load on the system. This means when demand increases, your business will automatically allocate more resources to your services and when demand decreases, you’ll be able to reduce the number of servers running at peak performance.

With autoscaling, you can also set minimum and maximum values for these contingencies, so they will only happen if certain conditions are met. For example, if you have an autoscale set up with a minimum value of $1 million and a maximum value of $5 million, then when there’s a spike in activity during normal business hours with less than $3 million in revenue, your workload will be reduced by adding secondary servers to handle the extra traffic until the spike ends.

If you don’t have an appropriate use case for autoscaling yet, consider setting it up now before something expensive happens.

Reserve instances for consistent workloads

Another way to ensure optimal costs in Azure is to reserve your resources and capacity for consistent workloads. By not doing this, you can quickly find yourself in a situation where you have a large number of resources allocated to an application, but it has very little or no usage. When this happens, the costs of these resources are wasted, and you have to pay again to use them.

For example, imagine you have three virtual machines (VMs) running a website that is not being used at all. You need to make sure these VMs are kept up and available. A typical solution would be to keep them all running for the whole day at all times, but this can lead to poor utilization rates due to high costs and poor performance when multiple VMs are always being used up. A better option would be for each VM to run for 12 hours per day. This means that for a 24-hour period, all three VMs would be active for a total of 36 hours.

In this example it would cost less than $100 per month to keep the VMs running 24/7. This is because the cost of running your VMs on Azure is much lower than the cost of setting up your own infrastructure and paying for power and cooling costs. The price of each VM is also equal to the sum of the monthly costs of all three VMs, as opposed to just one VM in a private data center costing much more than two.

In addition, you can use Azure’s autoscaling features to ensure your application’s capacity is always consistent with demand.

Get more from a Microsoft partner…

Azure is the world’s most comprehensive technology infrastructure that helps companies of all sizes run their business with the latest technologies and standards. It makes it easy for you to get your application up and running quickly, without having to worry about expensive cloud-based features or growing costs. You can improve in almost any area of your business by optimizing Azure resources, including pricing, performance, capacity, scalability (the ability to handle large volumes), security—and even data storage.

To ensure you get the high performance you need while keeping control of your cloud costs, contact the team at BCS365. As a Microsoft partner and leading managed service provider in Massachusetts, they can help you manage costs and get the most out of your Azure investment.