How to Manage AWS Reserved Instances in SES


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This article provides information on AWS reserved instances.  The primary model for AWS is a shared consolidation model for resellers. This article addresses how Reseller may purchase RI's against the usage from your customer AWS account usage/spend.

 When an AWS account owns a reserved instance and is part of a shared consolidation model, AWS applies the RI benefits randomly across all linked accounts in that consolidated model to instances that contain that RI type. AWS offers RI purchase options for Amazon EC2 and Amazon RDS. 

Links to the AWS Reserve Instances articles:  

EC2 Reserved Instances

Amazon RDS Reserved Instances

Using the AWS Management Console to by RI's


Customer RI Settings

The platform provides a few options for handling reserved instance in your bill that allows you, as a reseller, to maximize your margin. When you purchase an RI, you must have the AWS account residing in the platform.  A review of the settings on how the platform handles RI purchase benefits is noted below under these two options:

Option 1 - use "Pass RI Optimization to Customer"

When you select an existing customer from the Customer module, select [Edit], then Cloud Providers.   When AWS is high-lighted, there is an option called "Pass RI Optimization to Customer"  You can think of this like a hammer - it will force the platform to ignore which account an RI was purchased in and simply pass any RI pricing that is in the consolidated bill without changing the pricing. Pass RI Optimization to customer will confer the cost savings benefits from RIs to this customer; even if the customer did not purchase the underlying Reserved Instance.  If this option is left "unchecked" then any RI usage that a customer has but which they do not purchase for themselves is retiered to on demand usage.  "Unchecked" is the standard default setting.

"Pass through global Pricebook discount" is an additional option that would discount the RI charge based on the global pricebook discount defined in the drop-down menu immediately above.

Note:  These settings are not used in our shared consolidation model.  Only dedicated payers would activate this setting.  

Option 2 - set a third party read-only role for each linked account that purchases RI's

SES uses read-only access to determine which account actually purchased a reserved instance. If this role is set for all linked accounts that purchase RI's, the SES billing process delivers the reduction benefit of the RI rates to the end customer. If the ARN role is not setup, and the AWS account has purchases an RI, then the benefits (price reduction) may not be properly applied to the customer's billing data.  This is a crucial setting to ensuring the accuracy of billing at the end customer level.

Setup of the read-only access role is typically performed when you are linking an existing AWS account.

Read-only access role is already setup under 'Request" new AWS accounts within the platform.

If you have questions on how the platform calculates RI charges, please contact us by opening a support ticket in the portal.


Important Notes about Purchases

  • If your needs change, you can modify or exchange reserved instances, or list eligible Standard Reserved Instances for sale on the Reserved Instance Marketplace.
  • You can purchase up to 20 Reserved Instances per Availability Zone each month. If you need additional Reserved Instances, complete the form located in the AWS Support Center.
  • Purchases of Reserved Instances are non-refundable.
  • If you purchase a Reserved Instance from a third- party seller, we will share your city, state, and zip code with the seller for tax purposes. If you don’t wish to purchase from a 3rd party seller, please make sure to select a Reserved Instance with “AWS” listed as the seller in the console purchasing screen.

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) is a web service that provides resizable computing capacity—literally, servers in Amazon's data centers—that you use to build and host your software systems.

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud Documentation