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Cloud costs
April 25, 2024
min read

Harness the Power of AI for Effortless Cloud Governance


As cloud usage expands exponentially, companies are struggling to rein in their ballooning cloud costs. Optimization often feels like a never-ending battle, with one-time fixes providing only temporary relief in complex cloud environments that constantly change. The key to sustainable cost management is implementing proactive governance - setting intelligent policies to automatically curb waste and enforce resource efficiency as the cloud evolves. But realistically, manually creating and updating those policies is incredibly time-consuming, prone to oversights, and rarely keeps up with the cloud's rapid growth. This process leaves costs accumulating unchecked.

That's where Harness Cloud Asset Governance comes in. As part of the Harness Cloud Cost Management (CCM) suite, it is an automated solution that establishes and maintains optimal policies to govern your cloud usage and cost. Built on top of Cloud Custodian, Harness Cloud Asset Governance continuously analyzes resource consumption and spending across your entire cloud environment. It identifies opportunities for efficiency and savings and then automatically generates precise policies tailored to your infrastructure and workloads. These smart policies enforce actions like resource scaling, rightsizing, shutdown scheduling, and more to optimize usage and eliminate waste. With the help of the Harness AI Development Assistant (Aida™), the result is proactive, optimized cost management that finally makes the cloud work for you - without the grueling manual effort. 

What is AIDA, and how does it work with Harness CCM?

Harness AIDA™ stands for Harness AI Development Assistant, and specifically within CCM, it's your AI-powered partner for streamlining rule creation and governance. With AIDA, you’ll get numerous benefits:

  • Easy rule creation: Describe the rule you need in plain language (e.g., "Find unused EC2 instances over 30 days old and tag them for review"). AIDA generates the correct policy code for you.
  • Built-in validation: Before anything is applied to your environment, AIDA runs a check on your rule. Did you make a typo that could have unintended consequences? You'll get clear feedback to catch those errors early.
  • Understand existing rules: Whether it's a pre-built rule or one your team wrote, AIDA explains what it does, why it matters, and its potential impact.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Setting Up AIDA with CCM

Let's break down how you'd actually use AIDA to turn cloud cost chaos into well-governed efficiency:

  1. Finding AIDA: No separate setup is required – it's integrated directly into the 'Asset Governance' section of Harness CCM.
  2. Starting your rule: The below options make this flexible:
    • Templates: Browse AI-generated rules for common scenarios like finding untagged resources, identifying oversized instances, or enforcing security baselines. Pick one and adapt it to your needs.
    • Plain language: Type a description of the rule you want (e.g., "Delete any stopped EC2 instances over 30 days old"). AIDA translates it into a draft rule.
  3. Customization: AIDA gives you a starting point, but you're in control. Edit names, resource types, and specific thresholds as needed.
  4. Validation: Before anything affects your environment, AIDA runs a check on your rule's logic. If there are any errors, you'll get clear feedback to fix them.
  5. Saving and deployment: Once you're happy, save the rule. Harness will then monitor your cloud resources and automatically enforce actions.

To learn more about creating rules with AIDA, check out our documentation.

Beyond Rule Generation: Clarity and Collaboration

AIDA isn't just about writing code faster. It also democratizes cost optimization by enabling your entire team to comprehend and contribute.

  • No more black boxes: AIDA's rules include plain language explanations of their purpose, relevance, and potential cloud spend impact.
  • Foster trust: Transparency is essential with AI. Understanding a rule's rationale builds confidence for widespread adoption.
  • Align teams: Even non-technical stakeholders can grasp a rule's intent, promoting collaboration around cost objectives.

AI solutions like Harness AIDA™ aim to empower and augment human capabilities. By handling tedious, repetitive tasks like configuring complex cost allocation rules, AIDA frees up time for FinOps and engineering teams to focus on more strategic efforts. As cloud environments scale rapidly, Harness CCM’s capacity for governance and AI-powered automation ensures consistent oversight no matter the footprint size or complexity. And by providing clear, explainable logic behind each cost allocation decision, AIDA demystifies cloud finances across the wider organization. Cost-conscious practices can now become a shared responsibility.

Ready to See AIDA and CCM in Action?

If you're ready to move from reactive cloud cost firefighting to proactive, AI-assisted governance, try Harness CCM today or book a personalized demo. It's time to take back control and make those cloud bills a lot less scary.

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Cloud Cost Management