Cost Explorer from Amazon - a Welcome Addition

By CIOReview | Thursday, April 10, 2014
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FREMONT, CA: Amazon unveils a new toolset called ‘Cost Explorer’ for managing the user Amazon Web Services (AWS) spending. The AWS Billing Console would be a part of the Cost Explorer toolset. The visualization tools incorporated in this toolset would enable the user to track and manage AWS costs.

Cost Explorer can be accessed from the ‘billing and cost management’ section from the AWS Management console. Once launched, it displays three pre-configured views which are Monthly Spend by Service, monthly spend by linked account and daily spend. The ‘Monthly Spend by Service ‘ feature gives the customer the vantage point of his expenditure and helps in figuring out ways to cut down on the expenditure through streamlined cloud usage patterns or leveraging service-specific pricing options. The report generated by this feature is a snapshot of the user’s last three months of monthly AWS spending. The report that originally appears as a graph can be downloaded as a table in CSV format.

The ‘Monthly Spend by Linked Account’ feature allows the user to track the spending by his ‘Linked Accounts’ feature while the ‘Daily Spend’ feature allows the user to check on his spending on a daily basis helping to track key areas or projects on daily basis.

Another striking feature of this toolset is the custom filters. If the user wants to check how spending has changed after the recent product launch, Cost Explorer lets the user define custom filters based on time period, accounts, services, and tags and then use them to analyze his spend.

If the user wants to check the total cost of an application, cost center or functional group with the tag-based filters built into the toolset can be used to analyze the spending. AWS and Cost Explorer together takes care of the users isolated resource pools, reconciling vendor-specific reporting formats, and estimating ways to allocate shared resources.