Geodata Optimizes Log-Processing Costs by Using Amazon EC2 A1 Instances


Geodata, a market leader in Norway for geographical data and technology, is the Norwegian distributor for Esri, a global leader in geographical information systems (GIS) software. Geodata has been an Amazon Web Services (AWS) customer for a decade and often evaluates new Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instance types to identify innovative, cost-effective ways to process its workloads. The opportunity to experiment and optimize workloads was what initially attracted Geodata to explore Amazon EC2 A1 instances. “We routinely try new AWS instance types as soon as they’re available,” says Ray Skoog, system developer for Geodata. “The low barrier of entry makes it easy for us to try them and satisfy our curiosity.”

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Amazon EC2 A1 instances improved our log-processing stability and, through the use of Spot Instances, were more cost-effective.”

Ray Skoog
System Developer, Geodata 

Instances Built for Scale-Out and Arm-Based Processor Workloads

Amazon EC2 A1 instances are powered by Arm-based AWS Graviton processors, which deliver up to 45 percent cost savings for scale-out workloads. “I’m thrilled that AWS is offering Arm-based processors. They hold their own against other processor types that we use and run our workloads with no problems,” says Skoog. A1 instances are the first Arm-based instances from a major cloud vendor and provide all the benefits of the cloud, including on-demand capacity, high security, and scalability. “A1 instance types work well with our streaming log-data application. Processing in the cloud works to our advantage because if the log data increases in velocity or volume, we can add instances to match our need.” 

Since A1 instances work well with streaming data, Geodata can use them to process log-server activity for near-real-time and long-term purposes. The company employs A1 instances using Amazon EC2 Spot Instances, which take advantage of unused Amazon EC2 capacity in the AWS Cloud and are available at up to a 90 percent discount compared to On-Demand Instance prices. Geodata has experienced 10 percent cost savings after switching its logging workloads from Amazon EC2 R4 to A1 instances. Skoog says, “Amazon EC2 A1 instances improved our log-processing stability and, through the use of Spot Instances, were more cost-effective.”

Seamless Switch to A1 Instances

Skoog found that shifting Geodata’s log processing, system monitoring, and data-streaming workloads from R4 to A1 instances was both convenient and easy. Geodata uses the Amazon Linux 2 operating system and a series of Python scripts to prepare a custom Amazon Machine Image (AMI), which launches servers for custom processing, job management, and data processing. "It was zero effort to switch to Arm processing," Skoog says. He appreciates how AWS fosters innovation and experimentation. “The AWS Cloud is simply the most flexible and convenient. Cost savings are not the only reason to be on the cloud. It’s also important to have options that allow us to quickly and easily try new things.”

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About Geodata

Geodata provides geographical information systems (GIS) software and technical and professional services across Norway. The company specializes in map-data analytics and visualization solutions based on Esri software.

Benefits of AWS

  • Gained 10% savings by using Amazon EC2 A1 instances
  • Easily evaluated different Amazon EC2 instance types to optimize cost and fine-tune performance
  • Improved cost-efficiency for log-processing workloads
  • Switched to Amazon EC2 A1 instances quickly and seamlessly

AWS Services Used

Amazon EC2

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) is a web service that provides secure, resizable compute capacity in the cloud. It is designed to make web-scale cloud computing easier for developers.

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Amazon EC2 A1 Instances

Amazon EC2 A1 instances deliver significant cost savings for scale-out and Arm-based applications such as web servers, containerized microservices, caching fleets, and distributed data stores that are supported by the extensive Arm ecosystem.

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Amazon EC2 Spot Instances

Amazon EC2 Spot Instances let you take advantage of unused EC2 capacity in the AWS cloud. Spot Instances are available at up to a 90% discount compared to On-Demand prices. 

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Amazon Linux 2

Amazon Linux 2 is the next generation of Amazon Linux, a Linux server operating system from Amazon Web Services (AWS). It provides a secure, stable, and high performance execution environment to develop and run cloud and enterprise applications.

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