It’s not unusual for large companies to utilize multiple public cloud services, especially if those organizations have operations scattered throughout the globe. It’s also not unusual for operating costs to spiral out of control when using more than one cloud provider. For any multicloud user, the key to keeping the budget under control is understanding how costs can add up, and knowing what can be done to curtail them.
Where Multicloud Costs Come From
The vast majority of cloud provider costs come from these four categories:
- CPU resources
- Special web services
Pricing schemes for these services can vary wildly among cloud providers, which can make divvying up tasks among multiple providers a financially shaky proposition. Access charges and storage costs are usually the most challenging of these costs for companies to handle, as they often have the greatest impact on multicloud operations.
How Costs Can Add Up
Predicting access charges can be especially difficult when dealing with multiple cloud pricing models. Even with simple application transactions bouncing from one cloud to another, it’s easy for a typical multicloud workflow to double or even triple access charges.
Multicloud deployments can also cause storage charges to skyrocket, leaving companies with limited options when dealing with critical apps split across several different clouds. A company would still have to deal with access charges if it chose to host part of the app database in its data center or only in one cloud. Copying the database in all of its cloud platforms could also create additional data storage costs and cause synchronization issues.
Access costs can also be a sticking point for special web services and CPU charges due to economies of scale. Given that per-minute charges decline with increased usage levels, underutilizing special services and even CPU time by distributing apps among multiple clouds could result in higher charges and added cost.
A Solid Cloud Management Plan Can Corral Out-of-Control Costs
Getting a handle on otherwise unpredictable costs when dynamically moving apps among clouds could prove difficult, but it’s not an impossible task. However, it does require a significant degree of planning and careful consideration.
Organizations can start by mapping out workflows and data paths, identifying inputs, outputs, and areas within the multicloud deployment where charges are most likely to be incurred as data crosses these thresholds. Such maps may be somewhat difficult to decipher, but they’re necessary for identifying areas that could benefit from cloud cost management.
Mapping workflows and data paths in a multicloud deployment also reveals the layer-based environment that most applications are built on. Front-end layer application components that are instantiated in multiple copies and utilize only a single partner layer won’t have a significant impact on access or storage costs. Access and storage costs associated with middle layer components may increase as database processing becomes more complex.
When it comes to actual transaction and query processing tasks at the bottom layer, however, it’s recommended to keep these essential tasks in-house. Spreading this layer across multiple cloud providers could result in astronomical costs, especially given the amount of real-time database access needed and the amount of data transfer over cloud provider boundaries required.
Contact eXemplify today and learn how our cloud infrastructure solutions can benefit your company.