AWS Config generating cost while 'disabled'

AWS is like a drug dealer

They will lure you in by free tier, never warn you about hidden cost and as they say - ‘easy to get in, hard to get out’. They literally advertise ‘1-click setup’. But of course - there is no ‘1-click to delete’ button :)

The hidden cost of AWS Config

Reading the official documentation of AWS Config one could think that all they need to do to stop incurring cost is simply disable the collector/recorder. So that’s what they do, and they walk away. And it takes a while to notice a small charge in the billing dashboard regarding ‘config’.

What they don’t tell you

Even if the recorder is disabled, it still incurs cost - in my case it was $0.24/mo, so negligible (but still annoying). And removing that recorder through the interface or disabling AWS Config through the interface is not possible (‘easy to get in’, remember?)

Solution 1: if you actually use AWS Config

Enable retention policy. By default, AWS config retains the collection results indefinitely. By introducing lifecycle policy, you can delete collections older than x number of days.

Solution 2: if you don’t need AWS Config

You need an IAM user with sufficient permissions to modify configservice, configure AWS CLI in your system so you can make an API call.

List available recorders

aws configservice describe-configuration-recorders

Delete recorder

aws configservice delete-configuration-recorder --configuration-recorder-name <name - usually `default`>

Just to make sure it doesn’t come back, remove the AWSConfig role from IAM Roles.

(c) Dawid Krysiak