How One AI-Driven Media Platform Cut EBS Costs for AWS ASGs by 48%

An AI-driven media platform was a major user of AWS Auto-scaling groups (ASGs) and had approximately 600 instances spinning up each month per ASG. But due to inefficient Elastic Block Storage (EBS) management, the company was experiencing significant cost overruns and operational complexities.

The solution? A sophisticated multi-cloud auto-scaler that adjusted EBS volumes based on the workload needed and integrated directly into their Amazon Machine Image (AMI) – reducing storage costs and saving the DevOps team several hours every week.

The Problem: Resizing EBS Volume Every 24 Hours

The company’s ASGs primarily served stateless API workloads, and their EBS volumes stored essential data, including logs. Instead of relying on scheduled health checks to maintain instance reliability, they adopted a daily instance refresh cycle to proactively reduce the risk of downtime.

Every 24 hours, existing instances were taken out of service, and new instances were deployed. This approach ensured that their ASG always contained fresh and up-to-date resources. But it also created a challenge when it came to EBS volume management

Their instance size was initially defined as 100GB in the AMI. When new instances were spun up, they inherited this size – regardless of actual usage. Expanding or shrinking these volumes forced the company to create new AMIs, scale the volumes, and refresh the entire cycle.

Expanding or shrinking these volumes forced the company to create new AMIs, scale the volumes, and refresh the entire cycle.

Before we get into how organizations can keep cloud spend at bay, let’s first provide a cloud cost optimization definition. Simply put, cloud cost optimization includes the design and management of cloud architecture as efficiently as possible.

Worse still, the instance size would reset every 24 hours during the refresh cycle. In practical terms, this meant the company’s DevOps team had to spend several hours each week upgrading and expanding the EBS volumes manually – and still couldn’t consistently ensure an optimal EBS spend.

The Solution: An Autonomous Multi-Cloud Auto-Scaler

The ideal solution was to integrate a sophisticated Autoscaler directly into the company’s AMI. Not only would this enable effortless ASG deployment – but it would also optimize costs.

By using the company’s launch template, whenever an instance refresh cycle kicked in, the Autoscaler would be onboarded automatically into all the spun up EBS volumes. This seamless integration meant the solution would automatically scale each volume based on the workload needed while always maintaining a 70-80% healthy utilization.

Ultimately, this has eliminated the complexity of resizing EBS volumes within the ASG. Instead of having to code and create new AMIs and refresh the entire cycle, the company enjoys a streamlined, low-touch process. The solution seamlessly handles the provisioning of EBS volumes – and effortlessly handles the scale of 600+ instances being spun up every month.

The Results

  1. The company was able to reduce storage costs by as much as 48%.
    The solution resulted in significant cost savings, as over-provisioned EBS volumes were reduced.
  2. The company presently saves 3-4 hours/week in DevOps efforts.
    Effort previously expended on upgrading volumes in the AMI and dealing with complex expansion processes was saved.

Tailoring Advanced Cloud Solutions for Innovative Businesses

The company’s difficulties with EBS management were extreme, but they are by no means unique. The solution has quickly transformed the company’s ASG management, enabling them to maintain high performance while saving time for their DevOps team and reducing costs – and countless other enterprise players could achieve similar results.

Want to learn how much time and money you could save with the right solution?

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