Identifying Resource Utilization Levels
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In this course, focusing on GCP resource optimization, we'll look at ways to identify resource costs and how to identify resource utilization levels. We'll also cover preemptible VMs and how to use them to optimize utilization and to save on costs.

You’ll learn what committed use discounts are and how you can benefit from them. And finally, we'll cover TCO considerations and network pricing.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn how to identify resource costs and utilization with a view to optimizing them
  • Understand what preemptible VMs are and how they can be used to manage costs
  • Learn about committed use discounts and commitment types
  • Learn about TCO considerations and network pricing on GCP

Intended Audience

This course is intended for those who wish to learn how to optimize resource utilization on the GCP platform, and for those preparing for GCP certifications.


To get the most out of this course, you should already have some working knowledge of GCP.


Welcome to Identify Resource utilization Levels. Let’s take a look at how you can leverage usage reports to identify resource utilization in your environment.

The best way to track utilization levels is to view the usage reports that Compute Engine makes available. What you can do to track your usage is export detailed usage reports of your Compute Engine resources to a Google Cloud Storage bucket. The usage reports that you can export include things like how many VM instances in a project are running a specific machine type, how long each instance has been running, how much disk space is being used, and lots of other information about your Compute Engine resources.

I should point out, however, that these usage reports will NOT provide you with any billing information. To get billing information, you’d need to use the Billing Export feature instead.

Now, when you enable usage reports, two different types of reports are delivered to your Google Cloud Storage bucket. They include Daily Usage Reports and a Monthly Rollup Report. Daily usage reports, as you would expect, are delivered on a daily basis. These reports include usage data from the day before. 

A new daily report is produced each day – for the previous day’s usage. The monthly rollup report, despite being called a monthly report, is also delivered on a daily basis. However, unlike the daily reports, the monthly report gets overwritten each day with data that includes usage up to the day of the report. This means there will always be just one monthly rollup report per project, per month.

You could view the monthly report as a rolling log of sorts, while the daily report includes a separate report for every day of the month.

Both the daily and monthly reports are delivered in CSV format – and before you can start using the Compute Engine usage export, you need to have a Google Cloud Storage account and you need to have an existing bucket that will be used to store the usage logs that are exported.

You can enable usage export via the console, gcloud compute, or via API. When you do enable usage export, you need to tell Google which Google Cloud Storage bucket you want your reports delivered to. You also need to specify a report prefix to use for your reports. This is necessary because the reports will have file names that contain this prefix. This allows you to clarify what specific reports are for. For example, you might want to specify a prefix of “project1973-report” for a project named “Project 1973”.

To enable usage export through the Console, all you have to do is browse to the Compute Engine Settings page and, from there, check the Enable Usage Export box. Once you’ve done that, specify the bucket you want your reports delivered to, along with a report prefix, which is optional.

The image on your screen highlights each step.

Once your reports start showing up, you can download them just like you would any other objects from Cloud Storage. Your daily usage reports will include information about virtual machines, persistent disks, images, snapshots, static IP addresses, and load balancers so you can track utilization for them.

To read more about viewing usage reports, visit the URL that you see on your screen:

About the Author
Learning Paths

Tom is a 25+ year veteran of the IT industry, having worked in environments as large as 40k seats and as small as 50 seats. Throughout the course of a long an interesting career, he has built an in-depth skillset that spans numerous IT disciplines. Tom has designed and architected small, large, and global IT solutions.

In addition to the Cloud Platform and Infrastructure MCSE certification, Tom also carries several other Microsoft certifications. His ability to see things from a strategic perspective allows Tom to architect solutions that closely align with business needs.

In his spare time, Tom enjoys camping, fishing, and playing poker.