Wednesday Jun 20, 2012

CloudCruiser Chargeback in the cloud

Another company that does chargeback has just been pointed out to me:
There is interesting quote on this company's web site:
"Accurate and transparent chargeback is a key requirement in this age of cloud computing. By 2015, we forecast more than 50% of the Global 2000 will charge back most IT costs using service-based pricing, up from less than 10% today. New integrated tools will be needed to implement IT service-based chargeback."

- Jay Pultz, Vice President and Distinguished Analyst, Gartner

Thursday Jun 14, 2012

Chargeback and billing across public and private clouds

Had a great conversation today regarding the need for metering, chargeback, and billing of cloud computing resources. The person I spoken with at a Fortune 1000 company increased the scope and magnitude of the issue of billing for cloud computing resources beyond what I had previously considered. I believed that doing any type of chargeback and billing for one public, private or hybrid installation was difficult. This person pointed out that the problem is even bigger in scope. The reality is many companies are using multiple public cloud vendors and have many different private cloud data centers. A customer may use AWS for some smaller public cloud applications, (SaaS), Rackspace for IaaS, Savvis for colocation and a variety of Iaas and PaaS implementations for the private cloud. How does a company get a consolidated bill for all these different cloud environments? I am not sure their is an answer right now.

Wednesday Jun 13, 2012

SaaS usage billing software

Just found out about this SaaS billing company that can be used for software usage billing in the cloud:
Metratech Metanga

Monday Apr 09, 2012

Hitachi Data Systems definition of cloud

1. Ability to rapidly provision and de-provision a service. (aka: provisioning)
2. A consumption model where users pay for what they use. (aka: chargeback and showback)
3. The agility to flexibly scale - 'flex up' or 'flex down' - the services without
extensive pre-planning. (aka: elasticity)
4. Secure, direct connection to the cloud without having to recode applications (aka: internet-based)
5. Multi-tenancy capabilitites that segregate and protect the data. (as it says multi-tenancy)

Happen to be I have been talking about 4 of the 5. Did not mention connection to internet as assumed this.

Monday Mar 19, 2012

Chargeback and showback...both a 'throw back'

Been getting asked again by customers and partners about chargeback and showback in the cloud so thought I would blog on my response to this question. Charge Back background, information and industry analysis: Cloud computing is all about shared resources. These shared resources are computer servers (including memory and CPU), network devices, hard disk storage, database servers, application servers, cooling, floor space, electricity and more. These resources are shared by departments within a company, or by a number of companies, when resources are hosted in the public or hybrid cloud. Currently, hosting providers that run other companies on their cloud platforms do not have an accurate way to measure the shared computing resources used by a specific user let alone used by a specific customer. Additionally, companies running their own cloud data centers, for private or hybrid clouds, have no way of measure and charging back the departments in the company that are using these shared cloud resources. In both cases, the lack of determine shared resource costs and to charge them back to the company, department or user that is using this resources is limited a clear measure of business benefit and impacting company’s ability to measure the Return on Investment (ROI). An IT chargeback system is an accounting strategy that applies the costs of IT services, hardware or software to the business unit in which they are used. This system contrasts with traditional IT accounting models in which a centralized department bears all of the IT costs in an organization and those costs are treated simply as corporate overhead. Showback involves showing the IT costs to a department or customer but not actually charging them for their IT usage. Showback is a gradual method of introducing chargeback into an enterprise. Most companies implement a show back mechanism before a full chargeback system is put in place. Oracle chargeback product: Oracle Enterprise Manager provides tools for defining detailed Chargeback plans spanning different metrics collected for each type of resources as well as defining Cost Centers for grouping costs across multiple developers. Chargeback plans can use not only usage based costs, but also configuration based costs (e.g. version of the platform) or fixed costs (e.g. flat-rate management fee). Chargeback has rich out of the box reports. Trending reports show how charge and resource consumption varies over time, while Summary reports show the breakdown of charges or usage by different dimensions such as Cost Center or Target Type. These reports help consumers in understanding how their charges relate to their consumption and also assist the IT department with budgeting and planning activities. With BI Publisher, the reports can be made available in a variety of formats such as PDF, HTML, Word, Excel or PowerPoint.

Monday Oct 31, 2011

Win a copy of Migrating to the Cloud - follow me on twitter

Win a copy of this book. All you need to do is starting following me on Twitter Tom Laszewski
After two weeks, I will pick two twitter follows. These two follows will receive a free copy of this book:
Migrating to the Cloud

Saturday Oct 01, 2011

Metering and chargeback- First key attribute of cloud computing

This entry along with the next three will be about the key attributes of cloud computing. Cloud computing is not virtualization, putting your computing resources on the internet or consolidating IT resources. There are four key atributes that you must have to really be 'on the cloud'. Metering and chargeback – Metering and chargeback are mechanisms for gathering compute resource usage (metering) and then charging back the user, department, or company for the computing cycle that they consume. In the client/server model, metering and chargeback were not necessary because each user had their own personal computer and typically each department or customer had their own database server. Today, most cloud services are offered on flat pricing model structured upon usage of computing resources for fixed unit of time (month or days). Although this model reduces the cost of using IT infrastructure, end users and developers pay a price regardless of actual usage. If a user subscribes for a compute infrastructure for a month and even if they actively use it for only 10 or 15 days, they still have to pay for entire month. This pricing model is typically derived by calculating the overall cost of the infrastructure (acquisition cost + operational cost + margin) and then dividing the amount by a fixed unit of time such as months, days, or years. Using sophisticated metering and chargeback tools provide both public and private cloud providers the ability to monitor actual usage of resources by the users and then charge them accordingly. Accurate resource usage information (metering) up to the minute or second in time can lead to a true pay as you go model which is a key premise cloud computing. Oracle Enterprise Managers captures very detailed information about the resource usage and stores it in its repository that can be later used for chargeback purposes.

Migrating legacy client/server and mainframe technologies to the Oracle cloud.


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