Documentation and Best Practices

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

— User assistance content is no longer updated on this site —

— For up-to-date information, check out the Apptio Help Center


AWS EC2 Convertible RI Exchange Recommendations

The Cloudability product suite enables optimizing usage of  AWS EC2 Convertible Reserved Instances (CRIs) including cost monitoring, reporting, and recommendations including CRI exchange recommendations.  This article includes information for enabling and utilizing convertible reserved instance exchange recommendations.

Checking/Enabling Permissions

Before you get started you will want to make sure that you  have the appropriate 'ec2:GetReservedInstancesExchangeQuote' permission enabled.  This permission is required for Cloudability to generate convertible exchange recommendations for either partial or all upfront CRIs.

To check the status of the required permission, hover your cursor over the gear in the top right corner to bring up the account management navigation.  Select “Vendor Credentials” under "Savings" in the primary navigation.


Within the “AWS” tab select “Details” to view the permissions of any relevant accounts.



Accounts that do not have the necessary permission enabled will be identified by anything other than a green checkmark next to the ec2:GetReservedInstancesExchangeQuote line item.


If the required permission is not enabled, you can enable it by regenerating a cloud formation template and applying it to the applicable account(s). NOTE: After the CloudFormation template is applied and verified by the Cloudability Platform it will take approximately 1-hour before recommendations will appear.

Accessing CRI Recommendations

CRI Exchange recommendations are located within the “Reserved Instance Planner” under “Optimize” in the main menu. 

From within the Reserved Instance Planner select the "Exchange" tab from the sub navigation.


The main Exchange screen displays a listing of recommendations currently being generated for underutilized EC2 Convertible RIs in your portfolio that can be exchanged to cover exiting on-demand workload, thereby enhancing savings.

Recommendations are generated utilizing your usage, billing and pricing information along with your specified preferences for reference time period range, savings threshold percent and utilization threshold percent. In addition to your organization-specific information and preferences, all CRI exchange recommendations are tuned to:

  1. First, minimize up-front or true-up cost.
  2. Next, maximizing the savings.
  3. Then, minimize complexity.

Increasing the savings or utilization threshold preferences will reduce the number of recommendations generated to only those that meet your specified criteria.  If the threshold settings are set at zero, recommendations will all be at or above the breakeven threshold for the remainder of the reservation's term.

Tips: If you do not see any recommendations appearing in this view and you believe there should be some, things to try include:

  • Clear or change the View


  • Make sure the ec2:GetReservedInstancesExchangeQuote permission is enabled for the account you are viewing.


  • Make sure at least 1-hour has elapsed since you have applied the CloudFormation template to your AWS account.
  • Try adjusting savings and utilization threshold values 0% and ensure you have a valid sample date range specified.


Changing The Main View Presentation

The Main view of the Exchange recommendations within the Reserved Instance Planner provides a listing of current recommendations based the reference date range, savings and utilization threshold savings.  You can sort and filter the view to more easily find or focus on recommendations that are more important to you.


The recommendation can be sorted by clicking the header of any of the columns. For instance recommendations  can be sorted in descending (largest to smallest) order by simply clicking on the “Savings” column header and reversed to ascending (smallest to largest) ordering by clicking the header a second time.



Recommendation can be filtered out so that you are only able to see those containing specific traits in one of two ways from the GUI.  

First, selecting any hyperlinked label from one of the columns will add that value to the filters. You can select additional hyperlinked values from other columns, to continue to add required values and further refine your filtering but only one value from each column may be selected at a time. After selecting a value in any column, you will not be able to add any more from that particular column until you clear the first.



Alternatively, filters can be manually added in the filter configuration pane from within the settings panel by selecting/clicking filters  in the Reserved Instance Planner sub navigation.



Doing so will open the setting panel on the left side of the page. The filters configuration pane is located at the bottom of the settings panel.  Each Manually configured filter contains three values that must be selected. 1.) Measure is the unit of measure or column heading. 2.) Operator is the critical test (e.g. equals, not equal to, greater than, etc.) 3.) Value is the alphanumeric value by which all entries are tested within the measure.

Click "Add Filter" to begin.  Select the Measure and Operator from the drop-down menus that you wish to filter by and enter a value then click "Submit".



Removing/Clearing Filters

To remove a filter, simply click the x next to that filter within the “Filters” pane of the settings panel.



Navigating/Understanding Convertible RI Recommendation Details

The details of Convertible RI recommendations provide the necessary information and steps to execute an exchange including the existing source reservation details, modifications (if any) required prior to exchange instance types, instance source and target exchange details, cost implications and expected savings.

Begin by clicking the “details” button at the far right of a recommendation from the summary screen to expand the details view.




The top pane in the details view provides the detail of the existing source reservation intended to be exchanged as well as a projected savings summary if all of these specific recommendations are implemented.




The next pane, labeled “Step 1” details the necessary modify actions (splitting or merging) within the source reservation required prior to exchanging instance types. Within this step, you may see tooltip icons at the far right of some of the products of the modify action. These tooltips indicate that this portion of the reservation will be maintained as leftover capacity or to cover the existing workload.  You can view the specifics within each tooltip by hovering over them with your pointer.



The bottom pane (Step 2) in the details view provides the necessary exchange actions as well as the cost (if any) and the projected savings contributed by this portion of the exchange.  To navigate between individual exchanges in step 2, select one of the radio buttons at the left to expand. 


Explore more with Cloudabiity Reserved Instance Documentation and Best Practices.


Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request


Please sign in to leave a comment.