Cost Optimization Monitor
Cost Optimization Monitor

Appendix A: Default Dashboard Metrics

The solution’s default dashboard is configured to show specific cost and usage metrics. We selected these metrics based on best practices observed across AWS customers.

All metrics are calculated using the Detailed billing report with resource and tags that is automatically generated from the Billing and Cost Management console. These calculations do not include data from other sources such as Amazon CloudWatch. We recommend that customers regularly monitor their Amazon EC2 instance utilization metrics to help assess whether they are using the most appropriate and cost-effective resources for their technical workloads.


The Consolidated Account Dashboard shows unblended costs, which reflect actual costs per resource per account, not the average costs that are distributed across a linked account family. For detailed information, see Understanding Consolidated Bills.

EC2 Instances Running per Hour

  • Description: This visualization shows the number of Amazon EC2 instances running per hour by purchase type: On-Demand, Reserved Instances, or Spot instances. Use this chart to help assess how elastic your environment is and identify opportunities to increase capacity reservations for additional cost savings.

  • Formula: Count distinct running Amazon EC2 instances per hour and by purchase type

  • Unit: Instance count

Total Cost

  • Description: This shows the total monthly cost to date for a single account or unblended cost across all linked accounts.

  • Formula: SUM (Total Cost)

  • Unit: US dollars (USD)

EC2 Hours per Dollar Invested

  • Description: This visualization shows how many hours of Amazon EC2 utilization you are getting per dollar ($1 USD) invested in AWS. This is a useful metric for trend analysis (although less so for linked accounts that pull blended cost data). For example, after purchasing Reserved Instances, this number should increase. Similarly, if you are outbid for Spot instances and forced to launch On-Demand instances, this number should decrease.

  • Formula: 1 / AVG(SUM (EC2 Cost))

  • Unit: Hours

Cost by Tag Key: Name

  • Description: This visualization shows a cost breakdown by tag value for AWS resources with the commonly used tag key Name, which can help customers understand costs that correspond to specific tag groupings. You can modify this visualization to show data for a different tag key. A blank section in the chart represents blank tag values.

  • Formula: Cost per tag value

  • Unit: US dollars (USD)

Cost by EC2 Instance Type

  • Description: This visualization breaks down your investment per Amazon EC2 instance type to help identify which instances are incurring the most cost.

  • Formula: Cost per Amazon EC2 instance type

  • Unit: US dollars (USD)

EC2 Elasticity

  • Average Elasticity

    • Description: This metric shows the percentage of on-demand Amazon EC2 instances that you stop daily. This is a valuable metric because it shows how effectively your environment is balancing capacity and demand. Highly elastic environments (>30%) will get higher savings.

    • Formula: ( Daily-AVG-MAX(# EC2 On-Demand Instances) – Daily-AVG-MIN(# EC2 On-Demand Instances) ) / Daily-AVG-MAX(# EC2 On-Demand Instances)

    • Unit: Percentage

  • Average Reserved Instance/Spot Instance Coverage

    • Description: These metrics show the percentage of instances running under the Reserved Instance and Spot instance purchase models. These instances can provide you with a significant discount compared to On-Demand instance pricing. A higher percentage in this field corresponds to cost-optimized environments.

    • Formula: AVG(# RI EC2 Instances)/AVG(# Total EC2 Instances) and AVG(# Spot EC2 Instances)/AVG(# Total EC2 Instances)

    • Unit: Percentage

Explore and experiment with the Kibana dashboard settings to create and save additional visualizations, and share your ideas in our GitHub repository.