Many people are aware that, by using an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler, businesses can save a significant amount on the cost of deploying non-production resources on Alibaba Cloud. However, other potential cost savings do not receive such a high profile. This is possibly because software packages include multiple tools that duplicate the secondary benefits of an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler.

The moral of this story is, businesses should try using a standalone Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler before investing in a comprehensive software package. In this way, the software to schedule AliCloud ECS instances will become more cost-effective and pay for itself much quicker. If other software is required to perform other tasks, it can then be purchased separately.

How an Alibaba ECS Start/Stop Scheduler Works

In order to best explain the secondary benefits of an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler, a good place to start is by explaining the process to schedule AliCloud ECS instances. This involves creating a limited-permissions role for the scheduling software, and allowing it to perform a discovery of the resources a business has deployed on Alibaba Cloud.

From the results of the discovery, a system administrator can identify which ECS instances are suitable for scheduling, which are over-provisioned, and which are no longer being used. The software helps with this process by identifying instances suitable for scheduling according to their tags, and by producing heat maps to facilitate decisions about rightsizing and termination.

The heatmaps can also be used to obtain recommendations about the best schedules to apply to each instance. Although it may be quicker to apply a preconfigured schedule to every non-production instance, taking advantage of the recommendations is a more cost-effective use of an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler – particularly as the projected savings for each schedule are displayed in advance.

Schedule AliCloud ECS Instances to Stop Permanently

The one scheduling option that will not give system administrators an accurate projection of how much an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler will save is when the software is used to schedule AliCloud ECS instances to stop permanently. This option is available for when no structured schedule is appropriate because the business´s development team work irregular hours or in irregular patterns.

The benefit of scheduling AliCloud ECS instances to stop permanently is that the schedule can be deactivated with the click of a mouse whenever access to stopped instances is required. This is a more efficient way to start and stop ECS instances than by switching them on and off manually or by editing scheduling scripts every time access to a stopped instance is required.

Furthermore, safeguards exist to reactivate the schedule automatically once access is no longer required. This feature prevents the scenario in which costs are accrued unnecessarily because developers forget to switch their instances off and is clearly more cost-efficient than editing scheduling scripts – maximizing the primary benefit of an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler, saving money.

The Secondary Benefits of an Alibaba ECS Start/Stop Scheduler

As well as providing total visibility of a business´s Alibaba account in order to make rightsizing and termination decisions, the secondary benefits of an Alibaba start/stop scheduler are centered on improved governance, accountability and security. These benefits are also achieved automatically via the use of the scheduling software´s policy engine.

Using the engine, system administrators can create policies to automate many governance procedures. For example, as new instances are spun up, schedules can be applied automatically (when appropriate), or a “never schedule” policy applied to production instances. Users can be prevented from detaching or overriding the schedules, or reassigning instances to another user, team or credential.

Via the single-view dashboard, system administrators can monitor real-time activity on their accounts. Alternatively, alerts can be created to notify administrators when an action that would breach a policy has been attempted. Effectively the scheduling software can become the system administrator´s eyes and ears, allowing them to attend to more business-critical concerns.

To recap, the secondary benefits of an Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler include:

  • Total visibility over a business´s account.
  • The identification of unused and underused instances.
  • The flexibility to account for irregular hours and working patterns.
  • Automated governance, accountability and security.

Find Out More when You Speak with ParkMyCloud

ParkMyCloud is a leading developer of scheduling software for businesses deploying assets on AWS, Azure and Google Cloud Platforms. Our development team is working hard towards creating software to schedule AliCloud ECS instances, and we would like to hear from you if you are interested in a free trial of our Alibaba ECS start/stop scheduler.

To find out more about our offer – and the possibility to schedule AliCloud ECS instances for free – do not hesitate to contact us. Our team will be happy to answer any questions you have about scheduling start/stop times for instances deployed on Alibaba Cloud, particularly related to the secondary benefits of using an Alibaba EC2 start/stop scheduler.

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