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Cloud Costs: Gain Full Visibility with Plugin Costs

Cloud Costs: Gain Full Visibility with Plugin Costs

Getting a full picture of cloud costs can be challenging. Most enterprises receive bills from several cloud infrastructure-as-a-service providers as well as SaaS providers. In addition, there are a variety of private cloud costs, software license costs, and internal overhead costs  such as personnel, training, and certification.

RightScale Cloud Analytics already aggregates public and private cloud costs and allows you to apply markups and discounts. Today we are announcing a new feature, Plugin Costs, that allows you to plug in any additional costs that you choose, whether internal or external. With this new feature, you can now aggregate and analyze all of your cloud costs in one place, share them via Scheduled Reports or ad hoc reports with others in your organization, and incorporate these costs into Budget Alerts that notify you when you have reached pre-defined spending thresholds.

Here are just a few of the possible use cases for plugin costs:

  • Software-as-a-Service costs: Include monthly recurring costs for SaaS solutions, such as Dropbox, Slack, or Salesforce.com. Allocate the costs by business unit or department to allow your users to see their own costs.
  • Software license costs: Allocate costs for traditionally licensed software that is running on cloud instances to the appropriate business units.
  • Recurring or one-off costs from building a private clouds: Charge costs for a dedicated private cloud setup to the appropriate departments.


Cloud costs displayed for public and private clouds in RightScale Cloud Analytics dashboard
See plugin costs alongside public and private cloud costs.

You input plugin costs through a RightScale API call. Using the API call, you can specify:

  • Product category (the type of expense such as Compute, Storage, Network, Application Services, etc.)
  • Product (a line-item name that is meaningful to you for later reference)
  • RightScale account name
  • Date of cost
  • Amount in USD

In the screenshot below, the Product category determines where the plugin cost will roll up in reporting, which you can easily reference by line item based on the name you gave to each. The account name selector enables you to allocate the cost to the appropriate team.

Manage cloud costs by line item in RightScale Cloud Analytics dashboard
Drill down to see specific line items.

If you already have a RightScale account, you have access to RightScale Cloud Analytics and the plugin costs feature via your accounts page. To try Cloud Analytics, sign up for a free trial.

RightScale Cloud Analytics Free Trial