Bursting for more containers periodically


Hey guys. Love CircleCI.

I’d love the ability to purchase bursting… For example… most of the time I’d like my build to just use 8 containers but if I’m trying to get a release done quickly I’d like to be able to use 32/64 containers temporarily.

90% of the time I don’t need 64 containers but If I’m trying to get a build out quick then I could parallelize my tests and get everything done in less than a few minutes.


Right now you can already change your plan multiple times during the billing period. If, for example, you need 64 containers temporarily, you can change the container count through the UI and move the container slider back to 8 once your high-build-demand period has passed.

In this case, when you increase the container count you will be billed for 56 additional containers (64 - 8) till the end of the billing period. Once you move the slider back to 8, we’ll issue you a refund for the unused credit for those 56 containers. Does that make sense?

I do understand what kind of burst support you are talking about, I’ll pass that on to our product team. Cheers!


The problem with that:

  • It’s annoying to do this every time I need to burst
  • We get a new billing statement on every scaling event


OK… this is definitely better than nothing. But I agree with @hraban… it would be nice to have a bursting plan.


Our company also needs an autoscaling option.

I spend a portion of each day monitoring our queue and adjusting accordingly, so it’s not really occasional bursting like you describe. We greatly exceed our provisioned 32 containers for about 3 hours of the day, then most of the time during the late night our containers are unused.

Have your thoughts on this changed at all in the past month?


The biggest problem is that the containers are SLOW! We pay about 8x more than we need to because the CI containers are about 8-12x to slow.

We have a cheap/commodity box to do the same build and it executed about 12x faster than CircleCI.

And this is a $100 a month box…


I strongly agree with this request. As our team grows we have occasional busy periods, but we don’t use Circle at all overnight or on weekends. I hope at least you are not running machines with idle containers during our downtime.

Why not open up the organization plan to API requests?


Any update on this? I too would love to set some simple bursting rules like during certain times on week days burst up to 8 containers, then go back down to normal.



Thank you for your concerns, I have passed this feedback along to our product team who will hopefully get back soon.



The good news is that part of what we’re enabling with CircleCI 2.0 (now in private beta) is more granular control over both the environment in which you run your jobs and the computer power available. We are still working through pricing implications and options, so we’re not ready to announce any specific plans, but we want to continue to find ways to give you the tools and power you need to increase your overall throughput, and finding a model that allows you to run certain jobs with more CPU and/or RAM is something we’re taking a close look at.


As described in alexeys answer above we were able to increment our container count and decrement it after the usage spike and it worked beautifully - and resulted in a lot of billing statements sent to our accounting.

We later got severe threads from the accounting department to not to make use of this all too often (they actually print out all statements manually and have to do the math themselves).

Do you by any chance have the possibility to at least send us all these single charges and refunds in a single monthly invoice? That woul help us a lot!

Best, Alex