Choosing your AWS Instance

When in hurry, especially in startups, people will always choose the general purpose instance type of AWS EC2 virtual machines.. True Fact !

In a startup everything is a POC running in a production environment..

.. expect some cases.


This article is part of a serie of blog posts about AWS, please take a look at the first one: 8 Great Tips to Learn AWS

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Let’s move to the main topic.


circle clockwork- source: pexels.com

AWS actually offers 5 known types of EC2 instances, let’s see them one by one.

The AWS official documentation could probably give you more details, I am trying to keep things as simple as possible:

General Purpose: T2, M4 & M3

For mainstream applications, these instances are the best choice since they offer a balance of compute, memory and network capabilities.

T2 instances are optimised for mid-size websites, web applications, artifact/development/build/test/staging environments and microservices.

M3 and M4 instances could be used for mid-size databases and data processing applications.

Compute Optimized: C4 & C3

Compute optimized instances offers the highest performing processors and the lowest price/compute performance in EC2.

Compute optimized instances are a good fit for high computational scientific operations, compute-intensive applications, MMO gaming, batch processing, distributed analytics, high traffic websites and video-encoding.

Memory Optimized: X1, R4 & R3

While X1 instances are a good fit for in-memory databases and have the lowest price per GiB of RAM among Amazon EC2 instance types, R4 instances are a good fit for high performance/realtime databases, data mining applications, large scale in-memory caches and Hadoop/Spark clusters.

R4 instances offer better price per GiB of RAM than R3.

Accelerated Computing : P2, G3 & F1

This type of instance has parallel processing capabilities that gives it the ability to host high-performance databases, large-scale machine learning and different types of server-side GPU compute workloads.

While P2 instances are a good fit for general-purpose GPU compute applications, G3 instances are more optimized for graphics-intensive applications like 3D visualizations and F1 instances offer customizable hardware acceleration with field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) and works better for real-time video processing, Genomics and analytics.

Storage Optimized : I3 & D1

I3 and D1 instances are designed for storing and processing data. They offer low-cost storage.

I3 instances have a high I/O performance and are intended to run NoSQL databases, Elasticsearch and in-memory databases.
D1 instances are dense-storage instances and are intended to run MapReduce and Hadoop distributed computing, distributed file systems, network file systems, log or data-processing applications ..etc


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Don’t forget to download our mini ebook 8 Great Tips to Learn AWS.