Made popular by startups that wanted to reduce their upfront infrastructure costs, the public cloud offered an easy opex method to get development efforts off the ground. Public cloud providers now allow enterprises of all types to focus on the devops practices that thrive in that environment. But the public cloud is not worry-free, especially from a cost perspective.

Some factors, such as bandwidth, are well known and typically included in business models. But there continue to be stories about public cloud budget blowouts. If you’re in a group that needs to reduce the cost structure of your devops efforts, read on and see if you’re overlooking any of these five tips:

1. Turn off the VMs

The public cloud operates in principle on a pay-per-use model, but one reason cost overruns are common is a simple failure to shut down VMs. The question is when to turn off the lights.

Among devops scenarios, only staging environments, which replicate production, might need to run 24/7. But that is only for limited periods of time. As for developers, they may be scattered across various time zones and work long, odd hours, but even development and testing environments are unlikely to require a full 168 hours a week.