Backup Storage Pricing
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This course explores the cost metrics associated with the Amazon Relational Database Service, known as RDS. Minimizing cloud spend is always a priority when architecting and designing your cloud solutions, and care should be taken to understand where your costs come from and the steps you can take to reduce them.

This course looks at each of the components associated with RDS that incur a cost and how those costs are broken down. It looks at on-demand instances, reserved instances, database storage & I/Os, backup storage, backtrack storage, snapshot export, and data transfer.

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Learning Objectives

  • Understand the different database instance purchasing options and payment plans
  • Learn about primary storage and I/O pricing options
  • Explore the costs associated with backup storage and backtrack storage
  • Learn about the pricing for snapshot exports and data transfers

Intended Audience

This course is intended for anyone responsible for designing, operating, and optimizing AWS Database solutions. It would also be advantageous for individuals planning to take the AWS Certified Database - Specialty exam.


To get the most from this course, you should have a basic understanding of the AWS global infrastructure. It would be beneficial, but not essential, to have a basic awareness of the database engines covered in this course, i.e. Amazon Aurora, MySQL, PostgreSQL, MariaDB, Oracle, and SQL Server.


Now that we have looked at primary storage and I/O costs for your database, let’s now take a look at what costs you will incur for backups that you take of your database. Firstly, I want to identify which actions and considerations need to be taken into account and that will affect how your backup storage fluctuates:

  • The first point I want to make, and it might surprise you, is that Amazon RDS does not charge any backup storage costs that equates to the total sum of provisioned storage used with your databases within a specific region.  So for example, Assume you had a MySQL DB with provisioned storage of 150GiB-Month DB, plus a MariaDB DB with 450GiB in a single region.  Amazon RDS would not charge you for any storage utilised up to 600GiB-Month.
  • Any backup storage used over this ‘free’ tier is charged at $0.10 per GiB-Month, regardless of the region for:
    • MySQL
    • PostgreSQL
    • MariaDB
    • Oracle
    • SQL Server
  • Any backup storage used over this ‘free’ tier for Aurora is charged differently based upon the region.  Currently at the time of writing this course, it is $0.022 per GiB-Month in the London region
  • Any automated backups taken use backup storage
  • Any manual snapshots that are taken of your database will also use backup storage
  • By extending your backup retention periods (how long you’d like to keep your backups for) will increase the amount of storage required for backups
  • Backup storage is calculated based upon the total amount of backup storage consumed within a specific region across all your RDS databases
  • If you copy your backups to another region, this will also increase the amount of backup storage used within that new region

So all in all, backup storage for your RDS databases is relatively simple to calculate and inexpensive bearing in mind it is free to backup 100% of your provisioned database storage.  

Let me now move onto Backtrack storage costs with Amazon Aurora.

About the Author
Learning Paths

Stuart has been working within the IT industry for two decades covering a huge range of topic areas and technologies, from data center and network infrastructure design, to cloud architecture and implementation.

To date, Stuart has created 150+ courses relating to Cloud reaching over 180,000 students, mostly within the AWS category and with a heavy focus on security and compliance.

Stuart is a member of the AWS Community Builders Program for his contributions towards AWS.

He is AWS certified and accredited in addition to being a published author covering topics across the AWS landscape.

In January 2016 Stuart was awarded ‘Expert of the Year Award 2015’ from Experts Exchange for his knowledge share within cloud services to the community.

Stuart enjoys writing about cloud technologies and you will find many of his articles within our blog pages.