Documentation and Best Practices

Learn how to use Cloudability and get the most out of our cloud cost management tool.


Setup Stage 1: Add Consolidated Account

Integrating your AWS account(s) with our platform is a two-stage process. First, you will setup Billing Reports for us to ingest cost and usage data (read-only) for each payer account, which also automatically includes all associated linked accounts’ cost and usage data. Second, you’ll setup access to AWS APIs for each linked account.

Stage 1: Add Consolidated Account 15-20 min. setup, 4-24 hrs. until data first appears in Cloudability




1. Create S3 Bucket: Amazon creates your billing reports and stores the report in an S3 bucket. If you want your billing report delivered to an existing bucket, skip to Enable Billing Reports. Otherwise, proceed with the below steps.

a. To create a bucket:

1) Log in to the AWS Management Console for the account you would like to integrate with Cloudability.

2) From the Services menu, navigate to the Amazon S3 console.

3) Select Create Bucket.

4) (1) Type a name for your bucket in the Bucket Name box, (2) select region where bucket will reside, and (3) click Next through set up screens (4) click Create Bucket



b. Set bucket permissions:

1) Generate a sample policy that will be added to your bucket permission:

a) In the AWS Management Console, navigate to My Billing Dashboard.

b) From your Billing Management Page select Preferences.


c) Under Receive Billing Reports, enter your S3 bucket name and select sample policy. Copy the policy.


2) Add the copied policy to your bucket:

a) Navigate to the Amazon S3 console and select the bucket you created. Select: (1) Permissions, and (2) Bucket Policy (3) Paste the copied policy and select save.




2. Enable Billing Reports: Your Billing Reports will be delivered to an S3 bucket that you select.

a. Enable all Receive Billing Report options:

1) In the AWS Management Console, navigate to My Billing Dashboard.

2) Select Preferences.


3) Under Receive Billing Reports, ensure your S3 bucket name appears in Save to S3 bucket.

4) Enable all billing report options: Monthly report, Detailed billing report, Cost allocation report, and Detailed billing report with resources and tags.

5) Select Save Preferences.


b. Enable Cost and Usage Report:

1) In the AWS Management Console, navigate to My Billing Dashboard.

2) Select Reports.


3) Under AWS Cost and Usage Reports, select Create report.


4) (1) Enter a report name, (2) select Include resource IDs, (3) select Automatically refresh your CUR when... and (4) select Next.


5) (1) Enter the S3 Bucket name where you currently write your CUR file, (2) Enter an alphanumeric report path prefix (no empty spaces), which is required in Cloudability to ensure file ingestion (3) select Hourly (4) ensure compression is set to GZIP (other types are not supported), and (5) select Next.


6) Select Review and Complete.




3. Enable tags for Billing Reports: Cost allocation tags allow you to categorize your AWS spend. For the tags to appear in billing reports, tags must be enabled.

a. Enable all tags in your billing reports:

1) In the AWS Management Console, navigate to My Billing Dashboard.

2) Select Cost Allocation Tags.


3) Enable all tags you will use to analyze your spend.



4. Generate Access Credentials: Cloudability will generate a CloudFormation Template that you can use to provide access to the S3 bucket containing your billing files.

a. As a Cloudability administrator, navigate to the Vendor Credentials page in Cloudability.


b. Click the Add a Credential button on the right. If you've followed steps 1-3 in this document, you're ready to create an IAM Role using our admin console.

c. Enter your payer account ID and the name of the S3 bucket that contains your Billing Reports in the appropriate fields, plus the report and report prefix specified in the Cost and Usage reports section. Once you've entered these fields, the Generate Template button will become active. Click the Generate Template button to create a new Credential placeholder in Cloudability.


d. After a moment, the button will change to read "Download". Click the Download button to download the CloudFormation Template.


e. Navigate to the CloudFormation section of the AWS Management Console, and Create a new Stack.


f. Choose to Upload the template you downloaded from Cloudability, and click Next.


g. Choose a descriptive Stack name (something starting with "Cloudability", for example) and verify the automatically populated Parameters, then click Next.


h. Read and click through the remainder of the confirmation screens. Don't forget to check the acknowledgement before you click Create.


i. Your new Stack will initially have a Status of CREATE_IN_PROGRESS. Once the status changes to CREATE_COMPLETE, you're ready to return to Cloudability to verify the credential was set up properly.

j. Back in Cloudability, click Verify Credentials to verify the new credential you just set up.


k. You'll immediately see the payer account you just set up appear on the Vendor Credentials page. We'll use the permissions you set up to query for the AWS account linked to this payer account. In a few minutes, you'll see the linked accounts if you refresh the page:


Continue to connect AWS API data to your linked accounts.

Note: It takes anywhere from 4 to 24 hours for your cost and usage data first to appear in Cloudability, depending on how long it takes AWS to generate your first billing reports. In the meantime, you'll see a message indicating your data has not yet arrived.


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