Most organizations struggle with the concept of how to reduce their Amazon EC2 costs monthly.  Nobody explains the exact tips or process to lower Opex AWS expense step by step.  Mostly because every environment is slightly different & each company has their unique use case using AWS.  We covered the AWS Well-Architected Framework in a prior post which outlines 5 key pillars.  The Framework began as a white paper but has expanded into a widely adopted methodology for most organizations.  It provides architects a consistent approach to evaluate their AWS infrastructure and implement designs that scale over time for speed, agility, security, and expense.  Most people really focus on the first four and struggle with the 5th pillar in the Framework, Cost Optimization.  The reason this area is so challenging is each organization is unique in their quest of launching instances to support their business.  Development sprints, marketing launches, human capital all can play into the challenge of managing AWS EC2 costs, thus Cost Optimization in the Well-Architected Framework.  In the end, there isn’t a true playbook for the 5th Pillar to lower

The easiest option to reduce EC2 costs on AWS and not just monthly but a daily basis is to utilize Amazon Spot instances.

For many, lowering EC2 costs using Spot instances is not a new concept or practice. Dev teams regularly lower EC2 costs by manually moving test workloads into the Spot market if it’s available and migrate back once they are about to expire.

Is it efficient to manually move between Spot and OnDemand to reduce EC2 costs?  The answer yes if you have automation and no if you plan to dedicate a person 24 hours to the task.


What is AWS Spot?

AWS Spot instance is an available and unused EC2 instance significantly discounted compared to the On-Demand price, at times 90% discounted.  You could compare this to a baker who made too many pies and offers customers a significant discount to purchase them to rid the inventory.  However, there is a catch.  Unlike a baker, AWS can reclaim the Spot instances back for regular paying customers.  If this happens, instead of terminating the instance & the great price, Amazon will offer the organization a small window to migrate off Spot to avoid down-time.

New to Spot?  Read more on Amazon’s Spot Definition to see the price drop potential in their post “A Spot Instance is an unused EC2 instance that is available for less than the On-Demand price.


What are EC2 instances:

Image from Digital Cloud Training

Spot instances received a nice upgrade with the new Bare Metal EC2 instances  on M5n, M5dn, R5n, R5dn originally launched as virtual machines.  This powerful infrastructure is capable of 100 Gig bandwidth options


How do you pull this all together to lower AWS EC2 costs?

Macronet Services can offer two Free options to analyze savings real-time:

  1. Spot Orchestration: Leveraging a Spot Orchestration’s 20-minute install (oh, and zero new tools to learn) we’ll simply enable a quick Tag to your instances.  This will allow your environment to use Spot instances automatically, for 2-weeks to benchmark your savings actual and potential.  We say actual because any savings found moving your instances now or at 2AM through the orchestration, you keep.  Generally, we’re able to find 50-60% savings over a 2-week period:
    1. If you spend $25,000/Month in EC2 & we find $16,700 in savings, it’s yours. It’s that simple & automatic, no need to be online with several devices waiting for a Spot instance to open…. this isn’t human eBay bidding!
  2. Finops + Architectural review: Believe it or not, many organizations governance around instances at times slows down.  Not maliciously, more of a “we forgot about them” scenario.  We can suggest an benchmark review and insight review of your AWS environment within and outside of EC2 looking for expense reduction.


Take the next step in reducing EC2 costs in Amazon

Macronet Services can provide you a quick demo of a Spot Orchestration option between your current environment, specifically Autoscaling, Beanstalk and Kubernetes environments.  We have a quick eBrief on lower EC2 Costs to read first and learn more

Enjoy AWS Cost Optimization!