When To Use The New Scope Feature and Convertible Reservations on AWS

4 Min Read

AWS Availability and Region Scope

This is Part 2 in our series on the new AWS reserved instance types and features. If you haven’t already, read Part 1 to get an overview of the new scope feature and Convertible reservations.

Using Reservations with a Region Scope

If you’re a AWS user who relies on reservations, you’ll want to take a moment to evaluate your strategy to ensure you can leverage these new features. If you don’t require the capacity guarantee that comes with your reservations, we recommend switching the reservations from an Availability Zone scope to a Region. You can do this directly from the AWS Console or using the AWS reservation modification API. 

If however you rely on the capacity guarantee for some or all of your usage, you will need to take a more deliberate approach to switching reservations to region scope only where you can afford the loss of the capacity reservation. Note that this capacity guarantee only applies if your instance usage is in the account where the RI was purchased. So for customers who buy RIs in a master account, or who take advantage of RI float, capacity reservations are a moot point anyway. As noted previously, you can change your mind at any time and switch your reservations back to an Availability Zone scope to regain the benefit of the capacity reservation. 

Using Convertible Reservations

The decision to adopt Convertible reservations requires some deeper consideration due to the expenditure of cash required for the new three year reservation offering. But if you have the budget to support a three year purchase of reservations, and expect to need the flexibility afforded by exchanging reservations based on changes in your instance usage or reservation needs, we would recommend you consider this new offer. We will also be including functionality to support this decision making in our platform, so stay tuned to our release announcements.

Using The Scope Feature & Convertible Reservations With CloudHealth

We''re excited to help our users take advantage of Amazon’s new enhancements for cost effectiveness and flexibility. We’ll be busy rolling out new features over the coming weeks in support of both the scope feature and Convertible reservations. In the coming days, we will be tracking these new reservation types to provide visibility into inventory, usage, capacity, time and utilization. You’ll be able to manage reservations with policies and automation as you do today. Additionally, you’ll have the option to analyze, purchase and modify reservations, optimizing for cost or capacity – down to the hour.  Our reservation recommendations will be expanded to cover exchanges across all dimensions when working with Convertible reservations, including cost and configuration. 

If you currently use CloudHealth to automatically modify your reservations based on usage, the change to a regional scope will not likely result in a substantial cost savings due to the fact our service automatically modifies your reservations (which effectively makes your Availability Zone scoped reservations behave like regionally scoped reservations). Even though the change to regional scope may be negligible for CloudHealth customers, we still recommend making it if the capacity guarantee is not critical to your applications because it simplifies the reporting and analysis for you.

Your CloudHealth service will continue to modify your reservations, regardless of scope. However, in the case of reservations with a regional scope, we will focus only on optimizing the instance type (e.g. changing an m4.xlarge reservation into two m4.larges). Very shortly, we will release functionality to help you automatically adjust the scope of RIs to be regional where appropriate. Therefore, if you are using our automatic modification feature, you do not need to manually modify your reservations to make them scoped to a Region, as CloudHealth will do this on your behalf in the near future.

Looking further ahead, our goal is to help customers define a comprehensive reservation strategy - balancing cost vs capacity; evaluating convertible vs. standard reservations based on current and planned capacity; automating reservation exchange, including when and where based on price and workload.  

Find out how CloudHealth can help you maximize your investment in Reserved Instances, sign up for a demo today


Read part two in our two part blog series about the new AWS reserved instances to learn how CloudHealth can help you take advantage of these new features.

Alan Santos, Senior Product Manager

Alan Santos is a member of the CloudHealth Product team and focuses on enabling customers to be successful in the cloud by providing insights into cloud management best practices, building a mature cloud strategy, and ensuring customers are utilizing the CloudPlatform in the best way possible.

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