With the proliferation of cloud platforms today, it has become very convenient (and easy) to get onto a cloud platform provider and host all of your infrastructure needs. You can choose from among Amazon, RackSpace, Windows Azure and a wide variety of other cloud providers based on what exactly you want to do.
The ease of deploying new instances sometimes means that there are too many cloud instances that are maybe not being efficiently utilized, but get billed for every month. Worse, the budgeting and projection of cloud expenses can be nightmarish (as we've discovered first hand here at YourStory).
This is where Xervmon comes in. It is a product that helps you track and manage your cloud-based spending. It claims to automatically analyze your spending (in real time) and tell you exactly where you are spending money, and if there is any scope for saving on your cloud bill.
Xervmon was founded in early 2012 by a seasoned group of technology veterans and business leaders with over five decades of combined experiences from Cisco, HP, Nortel, NETGEAR. Xervmon Inc. is headquartered in Houston, Texas, and with Development Centers in Canada, and in India. (read complete story)
We at YourStory.in gave this product a shot, using it on our own cloud-deployed servers.
Setup is fairly quick - You have to set up access to each of the cloud platforms that you want to analyze, and Xervmon takes a while to get through all the usage data and crunch the numbers. Once that is done, you can now drill-down into the reports. The spending is displayed as nice graphs, and you can click-through and analyze spends in several areas.
One cool feature of Xervmon is the ability to set up budgets. You can tell it how much you're expecting to (or want to) spend on your cloud infrastructure, and you can then track your actual spending against budgeted to see if you'll be able to meet your cloud budget for the year. This is a great feature, as cloud bills can be very surprising (and sometimes shocking), and the ability to track budgeted vs actual spend is a huge boon for your IT expenses planning.
If you pay enough attention to your cloud spending, there are many ways to actually bring it down. One way, for example, is to set up reserved instances, which in some cases can give you a 50% saving! Xervmon can track these kinds of savings as well, and suggest ways for you to bring your cloud spending under control. Cloud spending can be very complicated - For example, Amazon has several categories of billing, with instances, CDN and storage billed separately. This can be sometimes hard to understand, and Xervmon simplifies this a bit, but it is still quite complex. You'll need to really spend some time analyzing just what is happening and where your money is going to figure out what you can optimize away. Xervmon is free to get started, and you can sign up here. There are also enterprise plans available with free trials.