Per minute billing

We have recently had a couple of questions/comments about how/whether we do per- minute/hour/day/month billing.

Our goal is to only charge you for the minutes you use on a server.

When you first get a server we pro-rate the service fee for the current calendar month, create an invoice and charge your credit card before proceeding with the setup.

When you get your second or subsequent server we also pro-rate the service for the current calendar month.  But the invoice is dated at the end of the month.  And your card is not charged until then.

At the start of each calendar month we invoice for all servers running at that point in time.  We charge your card for those invoices.

When  you shut down any server we add a pro-rated credit to your account.  This credit comes off any amount that may be owed.

The credits you get on shutdown stay on your account.  So if you have server left over running from last month and are billed for a full months usage at the start of the month.  You still get the credit.  And you’ll therefore be billed less the following month.

Note that at the time of setup if you have one or more other servers with us there is no setup fee for VPSs.  Otherwise the standard setup fee (typically $10) would apply for your first server.

Example:  Order server 1 for $30/m on 14 February, we will charge your card $24 ($10 setup $15 pro-rated hosting).  Come 1 March we will invoice and charge $30.

Order server 2 for $30/m on 15 March and we will create an invoice of about $15 ($0 setup, $15 pro-rated hosting).  This invoice will be dated 31 March.  Your card won’t be charged.

Shut down server 2 on 16 March and we will add a pro-rated credit of about $14 to your account.

Come the start of April we will invoice for server 1 ($30).  You’ll have $15 less $14 = about $1 owing for server 2.  We will charge your card $31.

Miscellaneous info: our billing is per millisecond.  But since its only cents per hour typically that typically won’t result in anything different than per minute billing.

Happy to clarify any questions about this you may have.  Or if you can think of a fairer way to do it.

Photo credit: 401k

8 responses to “Per minute billing”

  1. How does the billing work for the disk storage on servers that are shutdown?

  2. We have a state of running (and being billed) and shutdown (and not being billed). Are you after a VPS that is not running but where we are holding onto the file system for you? That could be do able.. Talk about the times you’d like to do that?

  3. I presume that if the server is only up for one hour a month the charge is just for that hour? I want to run this as an on-demand backup for another server that runs 24-7. If and only if that server is down will it signal (presuming there is an api) to spin up the backup server a-la-AWS without the hassle and expense of AWS.

  4. Jeff’s question has gone unanswered for a while.

    I don’t really have the same presumptions Jeff has about what the answer would be – my impression is that for that sort of cloud style billing to be a viable offering, you need to be running SAN based storage, and it doesn’t sound like that’s what you do?

    Either way, it would be good to have the point clarified.

  5. You only pay for the time the server is up. If you cancel the server, it (and its data) would be shut down. If you need persistent storage, you’d keep the server up and running. Or run a temporary server and attach it to some permanent storage space. e.g. a storage account.

  6. Hi, Peter:
    This article on how you folks do billing is interesting, but what happens in the situation I’m about to detail?
    You decide suddenly that you want to deposit some credit into your account to cover a possible order, or maybe a couple months of credit’s worth to cover for RimuHosting services.
    You next order a VPS or something else.
    Regardless of what you’ve just grabbed, how does your billing system work in that case?
    Charging the card on file when you have already deposited credit seems a bit counter productive.
    Maybe I’m not understanding.
    I’m coming from my experience with Linode, another good US-based VPS provider here.
    In Linode’s case, they bill either per-month, per-year, or for 2 years of service up front, and prorate services you cancil much like what you folks do with credits, and like you folks too, the credits remain in an account.
    I take it that you can still keep a RimuHosting control panel account open without incurring charges that way if you don’t have any active services, at least you can with Linode.
    Also, in Linode’s case, any credit you have deposited by you or otherwise will be used before ever charging the card on file.
    That’s why I’m wondering in comparison how your billing system handels an account that has existing credit that say, you chose to deposit for services.
    If you need more clarification, do let me know.