Author

Ankur Mandal

March 11, 2024

How Lucidity Helps With Cloud

Cost Optimization

Author

Ankur Mandal

5 min read
March 11, 2024

Lucidity emerges as one of the most trusted NoOps solutions aiming to transform block storage. With ingenious solutions, Lucidity aids organizations reliant on cloud service providers in automating the detection of storage resource wastage and optimizing the scaling process. This fosters a more comprehensive and efficient approach to managing cloud costs.

When delving into cloud cost optimization, it's essential to extend the analysis beyond compute resources and network traffic. You should also carefully analyze your storage resources, as Block Storage contributes to overall cloud expenses. 

Unfortunately, many organizations inadvertently neglect storage usage when optimizing cloud costs, leading to unnecessary and substantial expenses. However, ignoring storage can put your business into a financial strain in the long run. 

According to a study by Virtana titled "State of Hybrid Cloud Storage," storage costs are significantly increasing. Moreover, the respondents also reported that their storage costs were growing faster than the overall cloud bill. Yet, organizations choose to overlook storage optimization for the following reasons:

  • Compared to compute resources, the impact of storage resources is not apparent. 
  • Optimizing storage resources necessitates the development of custom tools, which is time and resource-intensive.
  • Solely relying on CSP tools can prove inefficient and hinder day-to-day operations.

Numerous cost optimization tools cater to AWS, Azure, and GCP. However, most of them focus on compute resource optimization. There is a distinct need for solutions solely focusing on block storage, such as EBS, Managed Disk, or Persistent Disk.

Enter Lucidity.

Lucidity addresses this gap, offering specialized solutions tailored to optimize block storage usage, ensuring organizations can effectively manage and reduce cloud costs while maximizing resource efficiency.

Lucidity introduced groundbreaking solutions with the industry's first autonomous block storage orchestration, offering two innovative solutions:

  • Storage Audit: With Storage Audit, organizations gain unparalleled insights into their storage usage patterns, uncovering inefficiencies and redundant practices like never before. 
  • Block Storage Auto-Scaler: This groundbreaking solution takes storage optimization to new heights by dynamically adjusting storage capacities in real-time according to demand. Organizations can maximize their storage resources by avoiding unnecessary expenses linked with overprovisioning.

Imagine having tools like Storage Audit and Block Storage Auto-Scaler at your fingertips, revolutionizing how you optimize cloud costs.

With Lucidity, managing storage resources becomes effortless as it seamlessly adapts to changing needs, fostering flexibility and enabling a hassle-free NoOps setup for cloud storage.

Lucidity's autonomous storage orchestration solutions offer a holistic approach to cloud cost optimization. By leveraging the powerful combination of Lucidity's Storage Audit and Block Storage Auto-Scaler, organizations can achieve savings of up to 70% on their storage costs. This comprehensive strategy enhances financial efficiency, establishing Lucidity as a crucial facilitator in creating a budget-friendly, streamlined cloud storage environment.

Automated Cloud Cost Optimization With Lucidity

Now that we know what Lucidity is capable of and how it contributes to comprehensive cloud cost management, let us dive into the features of Lucidity that make it stand out from the rest.

1. Lucidity Storage Audit For Storage Wastage

At Lucidity, we firmly believe that storage should not serve as a repository for waste. Recognizing the critical need for efficient resource utilization, we've introduced a powerful tool known as the Storage Audit

The Storage Audit is a user-friendly, readily deployable executable solution designed to automate the identification of idle or unused resources within your cloud storage infrastructure.

The motivation behind developing the Storage Audit stemmed from the realization that

  • Traditional methods, such as manual discovery or reliance on monitoring tools, demand significant time and effort from the DevOps team. These methods not only prove labor-intensive but also incur additional deployment costs. 
  • The cumulative costs associated with manual processes and tool deployment can escalate rapidly in the cloud environment's dynamic landscape.

Lucidity's Storage Audit is a practical and efficient solution to this challenge. Automating the discovery of idle or unused resources alleviates the burden on the DevOps team, enabling them to redirect their efforts toward more strategic tasks. 

How Does Lucidity Storage Audit Work?

Lucidity Storage Audit deployed swiftly within 25 minutes and provides insights into the following aspects.

  • Overall disk spend: We will help you determine your current disk spend by analyzing your usage and performance metrics. Moreover, we assist you in determining your optimized bill and offer guidance on efficiently scaling resources to avoid unnecessary costs associated with static allocation.
  • Disk wastage: Our Storage Audit identifies and flags idle volumes by analyzing usage patterns, access laws, and historical data. This allows your organization to make informed decisions, like downsizing or archiving, enabling you to reclaim resources and reduce unnecessary costs effectively.
  • Disk downtime risk: Downtime causes inconvenience, carries profound financial implications, and can tarnish an organization's reputation. But Lucidity's Storage Audit will give you a clear picture of the potential downtime before they can happen.

By analyzing historical data and spotting patterns, we anticipate and mitigate potential problems proactively, allowing you to stay ahead of issues. This proactive approach enables you to address vulnerabilities, enhance system performance, and implement, thereby minimizing downtime and its impact on your operations and reputation.

Case Study: We Helped Uniguest Discover 71% Of The Wastage In Azure Disks

Uniguest, a prominent content delivery and management solution provider, used Azure as its cloud service provider (CSP). However, they faced challenges optimizing their costs due to the complexities associated with Azure infrastructure. 

Realizing the need for profound visibility into metrics to optimize their cloud service for cost, Uniguest sought a solution that wouldn't require extensive manual effort or incur significant costs associated with monitoring tools. 

This is where Lucidity stepped in.

With just a click of a button, our agentless audit was deployed in 25 minutes, providing immediate visibility across storage utilization. We discovered that 

  •  They were spending over 71% on storage wastage.
  • Their average disk utilization was only 22%.

The Storage Audit further revealed the following were the root causes of the wastage: 

  • 95% of wastage was due to insufficient resources or provisioning more than needed. 
  • The other 5% of wastage was categorized as idle and unused resources. When looking specifically at why disks were idle, we discovered that in some cases, the storage was either not connected to a virtual machine (VM) or a VM just turned off.

The simplicity and immediacy of the Lucidity Storage Audit make it a valuable asset, providing organizations with actionable insights into their storage environment without the need for protracted manual interventions.

With our Storage Audit solution, you can effortlessly enhance your storage environment without spending excessive time and effort on resource discovery.

Stay flexible and adapt to the ever-changing landscape of the cloud as we at Lucidity empower your organization to optimize your storage seamlessly.

2. Lucidity Block Storage Auto-Scaler

Lucidity introduces the industry's pioneering autonomous storage orchestration solution, Block Storage Auto-Scaler. This innovative tool seamlessly automates the shrinkage and expansion of storage resources without downtime or performance issues.

But why should you automate the scaling process?

As mentioned above, block storage is one of the significant contributors to the overall cloud cost, necessitating the same level of optimizations as compute resources. However, organizations tend to overprovision storage resources instead of optimizing them. 

The primary reasons why organizations overlook storage optimization are:

Significant DevOps team investment

Storage optimization involves multiple steps, such as selecting the right storage class, implementing data lifecycle management policies, and periodically monitoring and adjusting storage based on the requirements.
To effectively cater to application needs, DevOps teams will have to evaluate their current storage requirements, study data access patterns, and align storage resources accordingly. Thorough planning and continuous maintenance are necessary to implement economical storage solutions, manage data redundancy, and ensure efficient data retrieval.
Furthermore, DevOps teams must stay updated on cloud provider advancements and enhancements, as they can potentially enhance storage efficiency by leveraging new features.
All these processes will divert the DevOps team's time and effort away from their core tasks, resulting in decreased productivity.

Overprovisioning

Overprovisioning is a common compromise since there are three hurdles in the storage optimization process.

  • Custom tooling challenges: Building a custom storage optimization tool is necessary due to the limitations of features provided by CSPs. This approach demands significantly higher DevOps efforts and time investment.
  • Inefficiency of CSP tools: Utilizing tools provided by CSPs may result in manual and resource-intensive processes that are inherently inefficient. Continuous reliance on CSP tools for storage optimization may not be feasible for day-to-day operations.
  • Downtime despite overprovisioning: Our independent study on clients leveraging cloud service revealed that organizations faced at least one downtime per quarter despite significant overprovisioning.

The impact of these challenges, which leads to hurdles in day-to-day operations, forces organizations to overprovision the resources. However, overprovisioning has severe cost-related and operational effects. Overprovisioning indicates resource inefficiency, and since CSPs charge for the resource provisioned, you will pay for the resources you are not using.

No live shrinking in CSP

Expanding storage resources in CSPs like AWS, Azure, and GCP can be done quickly, but no process supports live shrinkage. While there is an indirect process, it requires significant time, effort, and resources, making it prone to errors and misconfiguration. Moreover, since the process involves steps like stopping the instance and mounting the new volume, it would lead to downtime.

The combination of overprovisioning and lack of live shrinkage in CSP necessitates an automated scaling solution. This is why including block storage auto-scaling as one of your auto-scaling practices is essential. 

With Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler, you get just that: a solution that automates the scaling of block storage resources, ensuring efficient resource utilization without the need for manual intervention or downtime.

Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler is an easy-to-deploy tool that starts working with just a click, offering the following features:

Immediate Scaling Action

  • Upon onboarding, the Blocks Storage Auto-Scaler promptly initiates scaling actions to optimize storage utilization.
  • Aims to maintain a healthy 70-80% utilization level from the outset, contributing to cost reduction.

Rapid Response to Spikes

  • Ensures quick storage expansion within 1 minute in response to traffic or workload spikes. 
  • It also automates seamless shrinkage to adapt the application to the fluctuating storage requirement.
  • Guarantees that the system is equipped to handle sudden increases in demand without disruption.

How Does Lucidity Block Storage Auto-Scaler Work?

Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler sits atop your CSP and block storage, skillfully adapting the storage capacity to ensure the best performance and cost-effectiveness. Whether faced with unexpected surges in traffic or seeking to minimize costs during periods of low demand, our Auto-Scaler expertly optimizes storage to meet your organization's needs. 

Let us understand how it works.

We implement an agent-based architecture on each EC2 instance, a pivotal component carrying out two essential functions:

  • Capturing Storage Metrics: The agent diligently collects crucial storage metrics such as disk size, number of disks, IOPS, latency, and throughput. These metrics are then transmitted to our cutting-edge Block Storage Auto-Scaler.
  • Dynamic Scaling: The Block Storage Auto-Scaler, driven by specific algorithms, issues the agent either expansion or shrinkage commands. The agent seamlessly executes these commands, optimizing the system accordingly.

Here's our process:

  • Comprehensive Storage Audit: To kickstart the optimization journey, we conduct a thorough 1-hour Storage Audit as a complimentary service. This audit provides a detailed report pinpointing inefficiencies in your current storage setup, offering insights on potential cost savings.
  • Lucidity System Deployment: Based on the audit report, we swiftly deploy the Lucidity system in just 15 minutes, seamlessly integrating it into your existing architecture without any modifications. Your system is now primed for enhanced efficiency, and the results are tangible – expect a visible return on investment within the first hour of implementation. 

Benefits Of Lucidity Block Storage Auto-Scaler

Implementing Lucidity Block Storage Auto-Scaler in your cloud environment offers the following benefits.

  • Automated shrinkage and expansion: Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler continuously optimizes your resources, ensuring uninterrupted availability. It effortlessly adjusts to changing demands, simplifying the process of expanding or reducing capacity in real-time.
  • Zero downtime: The manual provisioning process often leads to downtime and performance issues. Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler eliminates downtime, ensuring resource optimization for seamless availability.
  • Storage cost savings: Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler helps reduce cloud costs for AWS, Azure, or GCP by reducing the storage cost by 70%. Additionally, it maximizes your disk utilization from 35% to 80%.
  • No Performance Issue: The Lucidity solution is meticulously designed to have a negligible impact on instance resources, including CPU and RAM usage, throughout the onboarding procedure. The agent utilizes only a modest portion of the CPU and RAM, approximately 2%, ensuring that your workload executed within the instance remains undisturbed.

We helped Uniguest save 59% on storage costs

Once we identified the idle/unused resources and the reasons behind them for Uniguest, we deployed Block Storage Auto-Scaler. It helped them reduce their storage cost by as much as 59%. Moreover, our Block Storage Auto-Scaler empowered Uniguest to scale their storage resources per the fluctuating demand without downtime.

We offer an ROI Calculator if you are wondering how much you can save on storage costs with Lucidity's Block Storage Auto-Scaler.

With our ROI Calculator, you can also estimate the potential savings achievable by using Lucidity's solution.

Click on the cloud vendor you are working with- Azure/AWS.

Add your monthly/yearly spending, disk utilization, and growth rate, and voila! We will provide you with what your infrastructure sayings will look like post-lucidity installation.

3. Customized Policies To Eliminate Downtime And Performance Lags

To ensure zero downtime and no performance lags, we have designed a "Create Policy" feature wherein you can create the policies per your requirement for efficient Virtual Machine management. When creating a policy, you can choose how much you want to use your resources and set buffer sizes. This means you can optimize your instances according to your policy preferences. 

The best part is that this feature is super versatile. You can create as many policies as you want, each tailored to specific situations. You can also add custom guidelines and specify buffer requirements. When these policies are implemented seamlessly, they make it super easy to manage instances effortlessly.

Make Way For NoOps Cloud Cost Optimization With Lucidity!

Lucidity harnesses the power of automation to streamline cloud cost optimization for organizations. If your EBS/Managed Disk/Persistent Disk costs account for 8 to 10% of your cloud expenses, if your DevOps team bandwidth becomes a bottleneck, or if your disk storage operates at an underutilized capacity of 40-50%, now is the perfect time to connect with us.

Lucidity simplifies cloud optimization, making it both cost-effective and hassle-free. Experience the ease of automated cloud cost management by scheduling a demo today. Witness firsthand how Lucidity revolutionizes your cloud infrastructure.

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