There is very little point offering cloud services if you do not have an accurate way to meter and bill against usage. There is also very little point selecting a cloud orchestration tool that doesn’t incorporate flexible billing so that you can bill based on your business and existing systems.
Here are some frequently asked questions on how Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator’s billing works.
- How does the Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator charging model work?
Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator uses a unique unit based billing model. This can be specified and customized on a per billing entity basis, allowing you to offer different charging structures to different customers.
- What can units be used for?
Units can be spent on four main types of service: servers, disk, network and software images. Each of these is priced in units per time period (for services such as a server running, or a disk is in use), or usage (such as data transfer or disk IO). Time periods can be hourly, daily, monthly or yearly.
- How often does the billing engine run?
The Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator billing engine runs every 15 minutes. You can configure this to meet your business requirements.
- What happens if a customer runs out of credits?
Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator has built in capabilities for warning customers (at a configurable level) when they are running low on credits, and if you are using the Billing System, the software can even automatically top up a customer’s account from their credit card, or by issuing them an new invoice.
- What happens if a customer runs out of units?
Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator’s balance checking system runs once per hour, if it detects a customer has run out of units, it will automatically shut their virtual machines down to prevent unauthorized usage.
- What happens if an automatic top-up fails?
Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator will automatically keep retrying automatic top-ups once per day.
- Instead of using credit card based top-ups, would it be possible to use invoices?
Yes, Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator supports full invoice creation and management capability. It also supports integration into existing external billing solutions.