AWS Official Blog

The New EC2 High Storage Instance Family

by Jeff Barr | on | in Amazon EC2 | | Comments

In our continuing quest to ensure that Amazon EC2 is applicable to an incredibly broad array of use cases, we are launching a new instance family today.

The High Storage Eight Extra Large (hs1.8xlarge) instances are a great fit for applications that require high storage depth and high sequential I/O performance. Each instance includes 117 GiB of RAM, 16 virtual cores (providing 35 ECU of compute performance), and 48 TB of instance storage across 24 hard disk drives capable of delivering up to 2.4 GB per second of I/O performance.

This instance family is designed for data-intensive applications that require high storage density and high sequential I/O — data warehousing, log processing, and seismic analysis (to name a few). We know that these applications can generate or consume tremendous amounts of data and that you want to be able to run them on EC2.

The storage on this instance family is local, and has a lifetime equal to that of the instance. You should think of these instances as building blocks that you can use to build a complete storage system. You should build a degree of redundancy into your storage architecture (e.g. RAID 1, 5, or 6) and you should use a fault-tolerant file system like HDFS or Gluster. Of course, you should also back up your data to Amazon S3 for increased durability.

Here’s some nmon output with all of the disks visible:

You can launch multiple High Storage Eight Extra Large instances in a placement group for high bandwidth low latency networking between the instances.

High Storage instances are available now in the US East (Northern Virginia) Region and will be made available in other AWS Regions in the coming months. On-Demand pricing is $4.60 per hour in US East (Northern Virginia). You can also purchase one and three year Reserved Instances (Light, Medium, or Heavy). See the EC2 pricing page for more information.

— Jeff;