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The distributed rate limiting (DRL) paradigm is a recently proposed mechanism for decentralized control of cloud-based services. DRL is a simple and efficient approach to resolve the issues of pricing and resource control/engineering of cloud based services. The existing DRL schemes focus on very specific performance metrics (such as loss rate and fair-share) and their design heavily depends on the assumption that the traffic is generated by elastic TCP sources. In this paper we tackle the DRL problem for general workloads and performance metrics and propose an analytic framework for the design of stable DRL algorithms. The closed-form nature of our results allows simple design rules which, together with extremely low communication overhead, makes the presented algorithms practical and easy to deploy with guaranteed convergence properties under a wide range of possible scenarios.