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Incident Response with CloudTrail and Athena

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Lesson 5 of 49
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[LAB] Enable budget alerting

Christophe March 25, 2024

Lab Details 👨‍🔬

  • Length of time: < 10 minutes
  • Cost: $0.00
  • Difficulty: Easy

Scenario 🧪

Before you complete any of our labs in your own account(s), we highly recommend that you spend a few minutes going through this lab because it will teach you how to configure billing monitoring and alerting to notify you if your AWS bill ever exceeds what you expect to pay.

A lot of what we’ll do in this course is free, but some actions will launch paid services. Also, sometimes, resources can continue to cost you money if you forget to turn them off or delete them, in which case you could end up with a surprise bill. These are the scary stories you’ve heard about on social media in regards to the cloud. This lab is designed specifically to help prevent that.

For example, if you are OK with spending up to $5.00 on resources for this course, then you could set an alert that notifies you when you reach $5.00, or when you get close to that (say $4.00) that way you can investigate and see if something was left running before you exceed $5.00. This is just an example number, and you can select whatever value you’re comfortable with.

Let’s get started by following the below steps.

Enable Budgets

AWS has made it easier than ever to enable budgets that will notify you if your costs either exceed your set budget, or are estimated to exceed your budget.

You can create different kinds of budgets, like:

  • Zero spend budget – create a budget that notifies once your spending exceed $0.01
  • Monthly cost budget – create a budget that notifies if you exceed or are forecasted to exceed the budget amount, each month

There are a couple of other options but those are the two I would recommend for this course.

To enable, search for and click on “Budgets.”

You’ll then be able to select what kind of budget you want, and how you want to configure it:

These are my recommended settings, but if you don’t want to spend any money at all you would select a different option, or if you are OK with spending more than $30, you can increase the “Enter your budgeted amount ($)” value.

Then click on “Create budget” and you’re good to go!

Reviewing your costs

Of course, you don’t have to wait for an alarm to come through to check on how much you’re spending in AWS. You can go back to the Billing dashboard and you will see a summary on the main dashboard. It will show you:

  • Current month’s total forecast
  • Current MTD (Month-to-date) balance
  • Prior month for the same period with trend

You can also see additional breakdowns further down on this page, or in the “Cost explorer.” Feel free to check that out if you’re interested, but otherwise, let’s complete this lab!

If you have any issues with this lab, please comment below and we’ll take a look!


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