GorillaStack has announced it has introduced new AWS cost allocation functionality for Elastic Block Store (EBS) snapshots.
Amazon EBS is a block storage system that has been developed to allow persistent storage of data. When AWS EC2 instances require additional storage, new storage blocks are created that are tied to EC2 instances.
EBS blocks can only be attacked to a single EC2 instance, although it is possible to create multiple copies of EBS volumes and attach each copy to a copy of an EC2 instance. This is achieved with EBS snapshots. EBS snapshots are essentially backups of the current EBS volume. Copies can also be made of EC2 instances to create identical content on different servers.
EC2 instances store data locally, but when they are stopped, local data is lost. To enable cost saving on EC2 instances, EBS volumes must be used. With EBS, when EC2 instances are stopped, file system data stored in EBS is maintained.
The way that snapshots work is the first snapshot taken is a full copy of the EBS volume, but each subsequent snapshot only includes the EBS blocks that have changed. A full backup is not created each time. Even so, the storage space required for multiple snapshots mounts up over time.
Since EBS is charged based on the storage space in use, it is important to keep track of snapshots and other stored data. Overtime, what tends to happen is stored data gets forgotten, snapshots are stored that are no longer needed, and businesses end up paying excessive amounts for EBS storage.
This is where the GorillaStack’s new Amazon EBS Snapshot Storage Cost Allocation feature helps. Cost allocations for EBS snapshots can be easily viewed by tag. Users can therefore track their EBS costs over time and analyze areas where cost savings can be made – such as deleting old snapshots that are no longer required.
Using GorillaStack it is possible to create lifespans for EBS volumes and snapshots and automate deletion when those volumes and snapshots are no longer required.
The process can be fully automated so users can forget about clearing old EBS volumes and snapshots, or notifications can be generated via email, Slack, or HipChat when EBS volumes are eligible for deletion. The latter makes sure users are in full control of their snapshots and stored data, but are made aware when it is possible to save on storage costs.