Documentation and Best Practices

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

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Reserved Instance Planner: Azure

The Reserved Instance Planner provides insights and recommendations for the proactive management of Microsoft Azure compute through Reserved Instances (RIs).

Get started 

Before you begin, make sure you’ve met the following prerequisites.      

Validate your account access 

The Reserved Instance Planner generates Azure RI recommendations by accessing the Azure Cloud API.  Since Azure Cloud limits API access to enterprise accounts, you must ensure: 

  • Your account is covered by an Enterprise Agreement
  • You have access to the Azure Enterprise Portal

If you don't have an enterprise account, access to the Azure Enterprise Portal, or if you aren't sure, contact your Azure account representative for assistance. 

Enable your Azure credentials 

NOTE: You must have administrator rights in Cloudability to view or enable credentials. If you don't have administrator rights, contact your organization’s primary Cloudability administrator for assistance.

  1. To check the status of your Azure credentials, navigate to Settings > Vendor Credentials in the left-side navigation.Azure_Creds_Nav.png
  2. Then, on the Vendor Credentials page, select the Azure tab.
  3. Ensure Billing Reports and Advanced Features are enabled for the master (enrollment) account. You should see two green check boxes on the row for the master account. 


  • If you don't see two green check boxes on the row for the master account, see the Setup Overview Guide to enable the necessary Azure permissions.
  • While it's best to have Billing Reports and Advanced Features enabled for both master (enrollment) and linked (subscription) accounts, you only need to enable these permissions for the master account to utilize the Reserved Instance Planner for Azure.

Generate your recommendations

  1. To begin, navigate to Optimize > Reserved Instance Planner in the left-side navigation. Then, select the Azure tab.Azure_Planner_Navigation.png
  2. At the top of the Azure tab, you’ll find a Controls Sub-Navigation bar for setting your recommendation options. These options are used in generating and modifying your recommendations. They include:
  • Account
  • RI Options
    • Term Length (1 or 3 years)
    • Scope (shared or single account)
  • Look Back Period (7, 30, or 60 days)
  • Filters (see Filter your recommendations)

Click the options you want to adjust them.

You may also adjust Term Length, Scope, and Filters by selecting the Wrench icon in the upper right.


NOTE: By default, recommendations are generated with a shared Scope selection, which means they will float across any subscription. While all Azure RIs must be owned by a subscription, recommendations with a shared scope don’t designate a specific subscription ID. They can be associated with any subscription in the enrollment when purchasing.

If you select a subscription under Account, the Scope will automatically switch to single instead of shared, assuming your intent is to purchase a RI that only covers the usage of that specific account.


Review your recommendations

View KPIs

To view a summary of your recommendations, below the Controls Sub-Navigation, you’ll find KPIs respective of any selected filters or views, including:

  • Count of recommendations
  • Sum of upfront fees
  • Estimated total savings
  • Estimated aggregate savings percentage


NOTE: The RI Planner displays upfront cost assuming the full upfront payment option. Since there is no pricing difference for selecting the monthly payment option when purchasing, the only distinction is that the upfront cost drops to $0. The projected savings would remain the same.

View Recommendations Table

To view a detailed table of your recommendations, below the KPIs, you’ll find the Recommendations Table.

It lists individual RI recommendations with details on purchasing, including:

  • Specific instance family
  • Region
  • Quantity
  • Scope/Tenancy
  • Target Subscriptions (Single scope only)
  • Upfront cost
  • Projected savings


IMPORTANT: Recommendations take the RI assets your organization owns into account. However, there is a delay in those assets becoming available in reporting. For this reason, you should wait at least 24 hours after acting on recommendations before generating or acting on any additional recommendations.

Sort your recommendations

  1. In the Recommendations Table, click the Column Heading you want to sort by.
  2. The Column Heading and Arrow icon will turn bold, indicating the column sorted by and the direction of the sort order.

If you want to reverse the sort order, click the Column Heading again.


Filter your recommendations

Quickly apply multiple filters

  1. Click one or more hyperlinked values in the Recommendations Table. 
  2. Your filters will then be added to the Filter Configurator above.
    You must use the Filter Configurator to remove filter parameters.

    NOTE: Only one value/parameter from each column may be selected at a time.

Use the Filter Configurator

  1. To access the Filter Configurator, click the Pencil/Edit icon that appears when hovering above Filters in the Controls Sub-Navigation.Azure_Filer_Config_Access.png
  2. To add a filter, under Filters in the RI Purchase Options view, click Add Filter, and apply:
    • a parameter (Measure)
    • a functional/logical test (Operator
    • Value to test against


  3. When you are finished, click Submit.

    To remove a filter, open the Filter Configurator and click the X to the right of the filter you want to remove. 

Export your results

Export your results for sharing or further analysis.

  1. Click Export at the far right of the Controls Sub-Navigation bar. 
  2. Select a destination to save or view your .csv file.



For additional information, please see Microsoft Azure Setup and Azure Cost Optimization.




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