Logic Apps – Strategies for cost optimisation (Logic Apps Standard)

In today’s digital landscape, optimising costs while maintaining efficiency in cloud-based applications is paramount for businesses. This text delves into strategic approaches to cost optimisation specifically for Logic Apps, a key component in Microsoft Azure’s suite of cloud services. The discussion centres around the standard runtime environment of Logic Apps, distinguishing it from the older consumption-based models. Through a detailed exploration of design and infrastructure considerations, the speaker outlines practical strategies for developers and IT professionals. These strategies range from choosing between stateless and stateful configurations to understanding the nuances of auto-scaling and resource management. The aim is to equip the audience with insights on reducing operational costs without compromising performance, thereby enabling more sustainable and cost-effective cloud computing practices.

Today, we are going to talk about Logic Apps strategies for cost optimisation. In this, we’re referring to Logic Apps’ standard runtime; we’re not referring to the old consumption Logic Apps. So, looking at some strategies, I’ve got these colour-coded in handy colours because the blue ones are really what you can do from a design perspective. This is really the responsibility of the developer and their impact on the costs.

One of the things you can do is you can look at stateless versus stateful. A stateless Logic App uses a lot less CPU. The less CPU you need, the fewer instances you need and the less cost. So, choose wisely in that. The other thing is, and also from a design perspective, the number of actions, because the more actions you have, the more CPU, the more instances, the more cost.

So, the more that you can optimise your design to consume fewer resources, the cheaper it’s going to be to run. The next ones are really what you might say are sort of DevOps infrastructure considerations. So, firstly, right-sizing: behind every Logic App is a virtual machine. You can choose a really powerful one or a really small one. And so, getting that right, and you might need to spend a bit of time analysing this, but getting that right can make a big difference to your cost because on the hosting plan, some hosting plans cost four times as much as others. Get the right hosting plan.

Look at that first, auto-scaling as well. There’s a little asterisk on here because auto-scaling can be a complex thing. Because counterintuitively, by setting a really high auto-scale number, getting through work faster, and then scaling back to a single instance, that can actually be cheaper than trying to limit the number of instances. Because the more you can get through your workload, the more you can get back to a really low number of instances, and that saves you money. The other thing is that Logic Apps, you can stop them when they’re not in use.

And even though a hosting plan will scale back to one instance, if you have Logic Apps that are stopped, your infrastructure will know not to load those, and it will consume fewer resources. And therefore, that can be an easy win to just stop the things that aren’t being used. Particularly if you have weekly jobs or daily jobs, you can just turn them on for when they need to run, turn them off the rest of the time. And similarly, you can tear down when not in use. Because one of the things about the cloud is you don’t have to have it deployed all the time; you don’t have to have this infrastructure and these virtual machines running all the time.

You only need to deploy them when they need to be run. Now, you may not want to be tearing down your production environment and redeploying it. You may, but you may not. But certainly, test environments and development environments when you’re not using them. Yeah, get rid of those because that can save you a lot of money.

The last two here, another colour. Again, these are more the responsibility of, let me say, maybe your Microsoft account manager or the commercial agreement you have. So, one of the things is that you can buy reserved instances. So again, if you want to commit to buying instances in Azure for a year or for three years, you can negotiate a discount on those. And there are discount tables available.

And similarly, the MAC, the Minimum Azure Committed Consumption, I think it stands for. But again, the more that you promise to buy from Azure, the more of a discount you can get. That’s definitely a conversation with your account manager. So, there are eight things to look at for optimising your spend on Logic Apps.

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