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Improve Cloud Cost Management and Resource Governance with Tag Defaults

Accurate cloud cost management and allocation is critical.

You can use tags to more accurately track the costs incurred by the usage of your Oracle Cloud Infrastructure services. To ensure accurate cloud cost and usage allocation, you need tags that you can trust, and you also need to be able to strictly control who can use your cost-tracking tags. Imagine a scenario in which you want to manage who can use a CostCenter tag and you want to ensure that it's always applied to newly created resources.

Introducing Tag Defaults

The new Oracle Cloud Infrastructure tag defaults feature alleviates the administrative burden of ensuring that tags are always properly applied to resources while ensuring governance over tag management. This feature lets a tag administrator set up a tag default that automatically applies tags to all specified resources created in a compartment. This action is especially useful because a tag default applies a tag when the end user creating the resource can’t remove or change the tag. 

Let's go through a governance scenario. In your tenancy, you created the Operators group, which is composed of end users who create all the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure resources used to run your company's IT workloads. These resources are leveraged by your company's cost centers or departments, so you apply CostCenter tags to those resources to allocate cost by department. You must be able to trust the value of the CostCenter tags because they determine which department is responsible for which costs. Therefore, you don’t want to give the Operators group access to change the CostCenter tag, but you do give that access to another group, Tag_Administrators.   

Without tag defaults, the Operators group would create resources, and the Tag_Administrators group, which is allowed to use the CostCenter tag, would have to potentially update all the resources created by the Operators to add the correct tag. This part of the cloud cost management process can be cumbersome, especially if resources are created without tags and might be omitted from the proper cost center until a member of the Tag_Administrators group updates the resources. 

Tag defaults let the Tag_Administrators group do exactly what the feature name implies: ensure that the correctly specified tag and appropriate default values are always applied to the resources within a compartment. Now, the Operators group, which doesn't have access to the CostCenter tag, can create the resources, and the CostCenter tag is guaranteed to be applied to them. And even though the Operators group can create the resources, they can’t remove the CostCenter tag or change its value. This relieves much of the administrative burden for the Tag_Administrators group, which no longer has to ensure that tags are always applied while at the same time ensuring tagging integrity.

Default Tag Inheritance

You can inherit tags down your compartment tree so that you can specify tag defaults at every level of your organizational hierarchy. Suppose that the root compartment has a tag default that specifies a set of tags you want to apply to every resource in your tenancy. However, the value of some of those tags depends on which compartment they are in. Using nested compartments and tag defaults, you can allocate costs for even the most complex configurations, from teams and subteams to projects.

Let's say that you have a tenancy named Acme, with a child compartment called SuperGizmo. The SuperGizmo compartment has children for the Development and Production aspects of running the SuperGizmo service, and you have costs that you want to track for the entire SuperGizmo project as well as the Development and Production cost centers. The following diagram and table show how you could use tag defaults to set that up.

 

Compartment

Tag Defaults

Resulting Tags on Resources

SuperGizmo    

Project=SuperGizmo

Project=SuperGizmo

Development

CostCenter=Development

Project=SuperGizmo

CostCenter=Development

Production

CostCenter=Production

Project=SuperGizmo

CostCenter=Production

 

You can see the total costs for the SuperGizmo project because the Project=SuperGizmo tag is applied to all resources in all three compartments. You can also break down the costs for just the Development and the Production resources.

Stay tuned for more tagging announcements. We're continuing to release new features that make it even easier to secure and manage tags as part of your enterprise cloud cost management.

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