Managing Inventory for Kubernetes Cost Management

Last week, we mentioned why Kubernetes is an important management concern for cloud-based cost management. To manage Kubernetes from a financial perspective, Amalgam Insights believes that the foundational starting point needs to be in discovering and documenting the relevant technical, financial, and operational aspects of container inventory.

Kubernetes Cost Management requires a complete inventory of containers that includes the documentation of namespaces, clusters, and pods associated with each node. This accounting allows companies to see how their Kubernetes environment is currently structured and provides the starting point for building a taxonomy for Kubernetes.

In addition, a container-based inventory also needs to include the technical context associated with each container. Containers must be tracked along with the cloud-based storage and compute services and resources associated with the container across the lifespan of the container. Since the portability of containers is a key value proposition, companies must focus on the time-series tracking of assets, services, and resource allocation with each container.

Containers must also track these changes on an ongoing basis as they are not simply static assets like a physical server. Although IT organizations are used to looking at usage, itself, on a time-series basis, IT assets and services are typically tracked simply based on when they are moved, added, changed, or deleted. Now, assets and services must also be tracked based on when they are reassigned and reallocated across containers and workloads. These time-based assignments for container-based reassignment can be difficult to track without a strategy to track these changes over time.

Inventories must also be tagged from an operational perspective, where containers and clusters are associated with relevant applications, functions, resources, and technical issues. This is an opportunity to tag containers, namespaces, and clusters with relevant monitoring tools, technical dependencies, cloud providers, applications, and other requirements for supporting containers.

From a practical perspective, this combination of operational, financial, and technical tagging ensures that a container can be managed, duplicated, altered, migrated, or terminated without any effects to relevant working environments. There is no point in saving a few dollars, Euro, or yuan only to impair an important test or production environment.

Kubernetes inventory management requires a combination of operational, financial, and technical information tracked over time to fully understand both the business dependencies and cost efficiencies associated with containerizing applications.

To learn more about Kubernetes Cost Management and key vendors to consider, read our groundbreaking report on the top Kubernetes Cost Management vendors.

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