Billing question

Avatar forum:mindas 7 years, 3 months ago

Hi,

I have a question about the billing.

Let's say I have 10 Linode instances running and I want to add 20 more instances for a couple of days and then go back to 10 again. Is this possible? Is this doable from the control panel or would I have to contact support? How would I be billed for this? Thank you.

13 Replies

You certainly can do it in the manager, barring availability issues. (For 20 nodes, you should be good up to the 2048 plan, if you want them all in the same data center. Even if you do buy everything up, Linode has lots of additional capacity on-hand. And if it isn't activated quickly enough for you – which it probably will be, but I don't know -- a quick ticket will take care of that.)

You might also be interested in using the API to create your nodes.

As for billing, whenever you create a node, you're charged a prorated amount based on the current position in the billing cycle, after applying any credit on your account; and when you delete a node, you're issued a credit to your account, prorated to the day. For 20 nodes, that means a pretty hefty charge on your credit card, and then, obviously, an almost equally hefty credit to your account a couple days later when you delete them. If that's a problem, it's possible Linode will be able to work with you to charge less up front if you file a ticket; I don't know.

Thanks for your input mnordhoff.

I am looking at 4G RAM instances as the apps we host are RAM-hungry. And no, I don't care much with regards to the data center, as long as I am not billed for the data transfers between my nodes.

Would be interesting to know more precise information about the billing though.

You are charged for transfer between nodes in different data centers.

And in the case of 4 GB nodes, at the moment the data center with the most available only has 10, so it would take a ticket to get 20, or waiting for more to be made available between tickets.

What more precise information do you want? Edit: November has 30 days, and it's currently day 1, so you'd have to pay for 29 or 30 days (I don't remember which). A 4 GB node is $159.95 per month. Divided by the number of days in the month, that's a bit over $5.33 per day per node. Multiply by 20 nodes, that's $106.63 per day total. Multiply by 29 or 30 days, that's $154.62 or $159.95 per node, or $3092.37 or $3199.00 total in credit card charges. When you canceled them all, you'd get a credit for that to your account, less $106.63 per day you used the nodes (including today). Edit: This is not legal advice etc.

You can put a ticket in letting us know which datacenter you want to spin up 20 nodes in and we can turn up another host or so.

mnordhoff has the billing end of it correct, everything is prorated so you will pay for the entire month and then get a service credit when you remove those extra Linodes.

If you don't want to pay for traffic between your Linodes, they'll need to be in the same facility and you'll need to add a private IP in your Linode Manager > Dashboard > Remote Access > Add Private IP. You'll also need to reboot and configure static networking.

@Praefectus:

If you don't want to pay for traffic between your Linodes, they'll need to be in the same facility and you'll need to add a private IP in your Linode Manager > Dashboard > Remote Access > Add Private IP. You'll also need to reboot and configure static networking.
Or use IPv6! Though mindas's "Location: London, UK" suggests that wouldn't be an option, since London Linodes don't support it yet.

Well, I think the discussion got a bit too deep so I better explain my rationale.

In case if you haven't guessed, I'm coming from Amazon EC world where you have the immediate elasticity available at your hand.

What I really want is something similar, without much fuss. You know, most of the VPS providers only give you monthly payment options - whole month on or off. Some of them bill per hour. Some do both. I need both.

So my question was really geared towards knowing how does elasticity work at Linode. If I can wind up a spare node quickly, fine. If I can shut it down and not pay for it while it's off - even better. But this somehow isn't clearly written/explained black on white and hence my question. What I need to know at this stage is whether this is possible or not, and how much it would cost as I need to sell this switchover to the finance dept. The charging and refunding part of it seems way too complex (yet understandable), so thanks for explaining it to me!

Getting extra 20 nodes isn't that much of a problem as they wouldn't be started at the same time. I'd guess support folks at Linode would be monitoring the availability and push more resources into the shallow pool, is that a reasonable thing to expect?

@mindas:

If I can wind up a spare node quickly, fine. If I can shut it down and not pay for it while it's off - even better.
Yes, you can add and remove Linodes as needed. When you add a Linode you are invoiced for the rest of the month. When you remove a Linode you are issued an account credit which will be automatically applied to your next invoice(s).
@mindas:

Getting extra 20 nodes isn't that much of a problem as they wouldn't be started at the same time. I'd guess support folks at Linode would be monitoring the availability and push more resources into the shallow pool, is that a reasonable thing to expect?
Yes, we are constantly monitoring availability.

-Tom

Linode offers immediate elasticity; the billing is just not entirely geared for it as you might expect. Fees are prorated to the day – meaning if a node exists for 23 seconds or 23 hours (scheduled around midnight properly), it costs the same -- but charges are for the billing period. So if you create a node halfway through a month, you're charged for half a month. Then if you delete it 6 hours later, your account is credited for half a month minus one day.

You still achieve flexible billing; you just have more money floating around between your credit card and account, which isn't really a problem unless you're near the limit.

On the other hand, if you need lots of nodes for minutes or just a few hours at a time, the for-a-day charges add up, and Linode may be a bad choice. You'll have to do the math yourself to see if it's worth it, and factor in things like Linode's general awesomeness. (You could always use Linode for stuff that'll last at least a few days and a competitor for short-term things. Or if you're doing short-term things all the time, keep a few nodes around and redeploy them for each short-term thing. Again, do the math.)

Nodes that are shut down still exist, and still cost money. It only takes a press of a button (ok, 2, since there's a confirmation) or an API call to delete a node, though.

Well, looks like I got what I wanted. Thanks very much guys!

Keep in mind, though, that since there's no persistent storage outside a node, it will take time to deploy a new linode because you're going to have to depoloy the OS, software, configuration, etc. Stackscripts can automate this, but you're still going to have to wait a few minutes to spin up a new instance while you wait for the OS to copy and then for the package manager to install the various packages your stackscript installs.

@Guspaz - I have assumed one can create own disk image ("Create a new Disk Image" link at http://www.linode.com/images/sshots/dashboard.png). Is this feature much different from its counterpart at EC2?

Few minutes are not that much of an issue, but thanks for the tip anyway!

You probably want to add the backup service to your first Linode and take a snapshot after your "template" image is configured how you want it. Then you can restore that snapshot to a new Linode as needed.

Just remember, you can only restore a snapshot to the same datacenter location. Also, the snapshot is associated with that particular Linode. If you remove the Linode that owns the snapshot you will lose it.

-Tom

@mindas:

@Guspaz - I have assumed one can create own disk image ("Create a new Disk Image" link at http://www.linode.com/images/sshots/dashboard.png). Is this feature much different from its counterpart at EC2?

Few minutes are not that much of an issue, but thanks for the tip anyway!

Disk images live on a linode (or rather its host machine), so if you delete a linode, all disk images that belong to that linode are also deleted. So you'd need to use a storage linode to store template disk images to copy over to new deployments. Or write a stack script (an automated deployment script that is stored in the Linode manager and can be used when deploying linodes) if you don't have any dynamic data to maintain (as in, you need to spin up a new application node, but it has no real data stored on it if it just hits a database).

Reply

Please enter an answer
Tips:

You can mention users to notify them: @username

You can use Markdown to format your question. For more examples see the Markdown Cheatsheet.

> I’m a blockquote.

I’m a blockquote.

[I'm a link] (https://www.google.com)

I'm a link

**I am bold** I am bold

*I am italicized* I am italicized

Community Code of Conduct