Two New EC2 Instance Types Announced at AWS re:Invent 2018 – Monday Night Live

The announcements at re:Invent just keep on coming! Let’s look at what benefits these two new EC2 instance types offer and how these two new instances could be of benefit to you. If you’re not too familiar with Amazon EC2, you might want to familiarize yourself by creating your first Amazon EC2 Instance on Windows or on Linux. Alternatively, you can also view our on-demand webinar that will help you understand different types of AWS EC2 Instances.

Both of the new instance types are built on the AWS Nitro System. The AWS Nitro System improves the performance of processing in virtualized environments by off-loading virtualization functions to dedicated hardware and software. By off-loading this processing overhead, the AWS Nitro System can deliver better performance in virtualization processing.  

The first new instance is the EC2 A1 which runs on the ARM-based Graviton processor. This instance type is interesting as the majority of cloud computing services are run on Intel and AMD chips.

The main benefit of the EC2 A1 instance type is cost efficiency. ARM processors generally use less power,  which is why you see the ARM processor used extensively in smartphones and tablets. By using the ARM processor, the A1 instance can provide high-performance processing at a reduced operating cost.

What that means is the A1 is potentially a cheaper alternative to using a T2 or M5 instance type. The a1.2xlarge delivering 8 vcpu with up to 10Gbps networking runs at $0.204 per hour  – compared to the t2.2xlarge which currently costs $0.3712 per hour or the m5.2xlarge which costs $0.384 per hour. The a1.2xlarge provides less memory but potentially better performance than the t2.2xlarge as it provides up to 10Gbs network support and runs on the AWS Nitro System.

If network and memory performance are both must haves then we could also consider running the t3.2xlarge which also runs on AWS Nitro System and currently costs $0.3328 per hour. The a1.2xlarge certainly presents a good price for 10Gbps.

First question for me was – will we need to refactor an application to run on the ARM processor? Here is how I understand the AWS messaging. If your app is written in a scripting language, then your app should run on an EC2 A1 instance without need for refactoring. Applications written in Python, Perl, PHP, Ruby, NodeJS or Java should run ok and will benefit from the A1 Instance as those script runtimes are designed to run on multi processor environments.  If you have a native code application, then most likely you will need to refactor it to run on an A1 instance. I think the A1 will appeal where you have web applications running in  groups that scale out frequently. AWS A1 AMI’s are currently available for Ubuntu, Amazon Linux 2 and RHEL – as always check back on the AWS site for the latest AMI’s, specs and pricing.

Major benefit: Cost – the re:Invent announcement implied that EC2 A1 instances can make running a web server up to 45% cheaper than other instance types.

Use case:  Microservices running in containers, web server fleets, caching or dev environments where you want to run a number of small instances that need to scale out quickly.

The EC2 C5n Instance was the second new instance type announced as general release.  The EC2 C5n runs on the Skylake Xeon® scalable processor from Intel®. The EC2 C5n instance type is built on the AWS Nitro System and as is optimized for optimal network performance. What this means is the EC2 C5n can deliver you more networking bandwidth across all instance sizes. The smaller instance sizes can deliver up to 25 Gbps of peak bandwidth, the c5n.9 xlarge up to 50 Gbps and the c5n.18 xlarge can deliver up to an incredible 100 Gbps of network bandwidth. Incredible! Check back on the AWS site the latest sizes, specs and pricing.  

Major Benefit: Network performance.

User cases: Applications that need the best possible network throughput eg analytics, ML, Big Data.

 

My Takeaways:

  • With up to 100 Gbps network performance the EC2 C5n provides another option for improving performance on network bound apps.  
  • The A1 instance is a cost efficient option for script based web apps.

Are you at re:Invent this week? Visit the Cloud Academy team at Booth #1809 to talk with our team and learn how we can transform your organization’s cloud training. 

 

Avatar

Written by

Andrew Larkin

Andrew is an AWS certified professional who is passionate about helping others learn how to use and gain benefit from AWS technologies. Andrew has worked for AWS and for AWS technology partners Ooyala and Adobe. His favorite Amazon leadership principle is "Customer Obsession" as everything AWS starts with the customer. Passions around work are cycling and surfing, and having a laugh about the lessons learnt trying to launch two daughters and a few start ups.


Related Posts

Patrick Navarro
Patrick Navarro
— January 22, 2020

Top 5 AWS Salary Report Findings

At the speed the cloud tech space is developing, it can be hard to keep track of everything that’s happening within the AWS ecosystem. Advances in technology prompt smarter functionality and innovative new products, which in turn give rise to new job roles that have a ripple effect on t...

Read more
  • AWS
  • salary
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— January 6, 2020

New on Cloud Academy: Red Hat, Agile, OWASP Labs, Amazon SageMaker Lab, Linux Command Line Lab, SQL, Git Labs, Scrum Master, Azure Architects Lab, and Much More

Happy New Year! We hope you're ready to kick your training in overdrive in 2020 because we have a ton of new content for you. Not only do we have a bunch of new courses, hands-on labs, and lab challenges on AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud, but we also have three new courses on Red Hat, th...

Read more
  • agile
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Linux
  • OWASP
  • programming
  • red hat
  • scrum
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— December 24, 2019

Cloud Academy’s Blog Digest: Azure Best Practices, 6 Reasons You Should Get AWS Certified, Google Cloud Certification Prep, and more

Happy Holidays from Cloud Academy We hope you have a wonderful holiday season filled with family, friends, and plenty of food. Here at Cloud Academy, we are thankful for our amazing customer like you.  Since this time of year can be stressful, we’re sharing a few of our latest article...

Read more
  • AWS
  • azure best practices
  • blog digest
  • Cloud Academy
  • Google Cloud
Avatar
Guy Hummel
— December 12, 2019

Google Cloud Platform Certification: Preparation and Prerequisites

Google Cloud Platform (GCP) has evolved from being a niche player to a serious competitor to Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. In 2019, research firm Gartner placed Google in the Leaders quadrant in its Magic Quadrant for Cloud Infrastructure as a Service for the second consecuti...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Google Cloud Platform
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— December 10, 2019

New Lab Challenges: Push Your Skills to the Next Level

Build hands-on experience using real accounts on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and more Meaningful cloud skills require more than book knowledge. Hands-on experience is required to translate knowledge into real-world results. We see this time and time again in studies about how pe...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Google Cloud
  • hands-on
  • labs
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— December 5, 2019

New on Cloud Academy: AWS Solution Architect Lab Challenge, Azure Hands-on Labs, Foundation Certificate in Cyber Security, and Much More

Now that Thanksgiving is over and the craziness of Black Friday has died down, it's now time for the busiest season of the year. Whether you're a last-minute shopper or you already have your shopping done, the holidays bring so much more excitement than any other time of year. Since our...

Read more
  • AWS
  • AWS solution architect
  • AZ-203
  • Azure
  • cyber security
  • FCCS
  • Foundation Certificate in Cyber Security
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Kubernetes
Avatar
Cloud Academy Team
— December 4, 2019

Understanding Enterprise Cloud Migration

What is enterprise cloud migration? Cloud migration is about moving your data, applications, and even infrastructure from your on-premises computers or infrastructure to a virtual pool of on-demand, shared resources that offer compute, storage, and network services at scale. Why d...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Data Migration
Wendy Dessler
Wendy Dessler
— November 27, 2019

6 Reasons Why You Should Get an AWS Certification This Year

In the past decade, the rise of cloud computing has been undeniable. Businesses of all sizes are moving their infrastructure and applications to the cloud. This is partly because the cloud allows businesses and their employees to access important information from just about anywhere. ...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Certifications
  • certified
Avatar
Andrea Colangelo
— November 26, 2019

AWS Regions and Availability Zones: The Simplest Explanation You Will Ever Find Around

The basics of AWS Regions and Availability Zones We’re going to treat this article as a sort of AWS 101 — it’ll be a quick primer on AWS Regions and Availability Zones that will be useful for understanding the basics of how AWS infrastructure is organized. We’ll define each section,...

Read more
  • AWS
Avatar
Dzenan Dzevlan
— November 20, 2019

Application Load Balancer vs. Classic Load Balancer

What is an Elastic Load Balancer? This post covers basics of what an Elastic Load Balancer is, and two of its examples: Application Load Balancers and Classic Load Balancers. For additional information — including a comparison that explains Network Load Balancers — check out our post o...

Read more
  • ALB
  • Application Load Balancer
  • AWS
  • Elastic Load Balancer
  • ELB
Albert Qian
Albert Qian
— November 13, 2019

Advantages and Disadvantages of Microservices Architecture

What are microservices? Let's start our discussion by setting a foundation of what microservices are. Microservices are a way of breaking large software projects into loosely coupled modules, which communicate with each other through simple Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). ...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Docker
  • Kubernetes
  • Microservices
Nisar Ahmad
Nisar Ahmad
— November 12, 2019

Kubernetes Services: AWS vs. Azure vs. Google Cloud

Kubernetes is a popular open-source container orchestration platform that allows us to deploy and manage multi-container applications at scale. Businesses are rapidly adopting this revolutionary technology to modernize their applications. Cloud service providers — such as Amazon Web Ser...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Google Cloud
  • Kubernetes