Reducing cloud data storage costs

The cost of keeping your data in the cloud is constantly changing. Most organizations first move to the cloud to save money, and while they do initially see reduced costs compared to buying traditional on-premises infrastructure, cloud costs tend to climb up and up.

There are a few reasons costs are hard to predict and hard to keep under control. “Data center, resiliency level, volume of stored data, eligibility for free tiers, frequency of data access, data transfer fees, data access fees and support subscriptions can all affect the total cloud storage cost,” writes Cynthia Harvey in Enterprise Storage Forum.

This is not a simple matter of different vendors offering different pricing. It’s a matter of needs changing over time, including each file’s access and protection needs. And as needs change, costs change. Research shows that increasing consumption and wasted resources are the usual culprits for spiraling costs. Poorly managed sprawl, whether it’s capacity growth, unnecessary redundancy, or excessive bandwidth, is never cost-effective.

Because cloud economics change over time, we’ve built Aparavi with features to help keep costs low. Our multi-cloud architecture is primarily intended to guarantee mobility between providers. Use one cloud today, switch to another when you can save money – our software immediately starts moving new and changed data to the new cloud, and trickling data from the old service to the new. Here’s how we help reduce data storage costs in an age of massive data growth:

Avoid Egress Fees

Understand costs are incurred not only to store the data, but also to retrieve it or move it. At this writing, Amazon S3 and Glacier allow you to remove up to 1 GB per month at no cost, Azure Blob gives 5 GB per month for all tiers. So Aparavi intelligently manages the removal of data so you don’t get charged for excessive egress rates.

Tiers

Since cloud vendors charge the highest price for storing hot data and the lowest cost for cold data, this feature becomes important as a file grows inactive over time. If it’s rarely accessed, for example, it’s only being retained for regulatory compliance purposes, it can safely move off to a cheaper, colder tier.

Multi-Tenant Structure

Reducing cloud storage costs

Even our multi-tenant structure can be useful in a multi-cloud environment. Often as capacity grows, as it does in any successful organization, administrators set up hierarchies and policies to give different departments or projects different privileges and limitations. You may even impose quotas or chargebacks to get a handle on costs. Whatever the issue, Aparavi is easy to configure according to your internal structure – just set up the specific retention policies and the software ensures that they’re being followed, without continual oversight.

Data Pruning

The Cloud Active Data Pruning feature also helps reduce data storage costs, because it’s constantly shrinking the total data footprint by removing files, or portions of files, from cloud locations (and on-prem) as soon as they’re no longer needed. This is an automated process – tell the software what the retention period should be and after that it’s gone. Over time, data pruning can reduce the archive by as much as 75 percent overall. This will have a cascading effect on your capacity costs.

These features are intended to allow you to move and migrate between different vendors, clouds, and services, and avoid remaining locked in to a pricing structure that is no longer a good return. It not only helps manage capacity growth, it can actually shrink data over time. It addresses inefficient resource utilization that inevitably happens when data is unnecessarily duplicated in different locations. And it’s architected so you don’t need to bring data back on-premises before migrating to the new cloud.

Cloud economics are constantly changing, and there are so many ways Active Archive helps customers and managed service providers optimize cloud storage use. Please get in touch if you’d like to see a demo, or download a free trial here.