I’ve been looking at the pricing of Amazon EC2 (Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud) running as if it were a VPS. I intend to run it continuously for as long as possible. I likely only need a small instance as described here.

Specification of EC2 Small Instance

  • 1.7 GB memory
  • 1 EC2 Compute Unit (1 virtual core with 1 EC2 Compute Unit)
  • 160 GB instance storage (150 GB plus 10 GB root partition)
  • 32-bit platform
  • I/O Performance: Moderate

These are some notes I have made for Amazon EC2. All prices are in US dollar and does not include bandwidth costs as those are far too varying.

Amazon web services

I only need the smallest Linux/UNIX instance and the pricing is $0.085 / hour for a server instance in North Virginia, USA without reserving an instance. (There’s going to be one in Singapore next year.)

I can choose to reserve the server instance for 1 or 3 years and pay $227.50 or $350 respectively and pay for $0.03 / hour for a similar instance.

To put the cost into perspective:

For 1 year

  • Without reserved instance: $0.085 * 24 * 365 = $744.60 ($62.05 / month)
  • With reserved instance: $0.03 * 24 * 365+ $227.50 = $490.30 (~$40.86 / month)
  • Percentage saving after 1 year: (744.60 – 490.30) / 744.60 = ~34.1%

For 3 years

  • Without reserved instance: $0.085 * 24 * 365 * 3 = $2233.80 ($62.05/ month)
  • With reserved instance: $0.03 * 24 * 365 * 3 + $350 = $1138.40 (~$31.62 / month)
  • Percentage saving after 3 years: (2233.80 – 1138.40) / 2233.80 = ~49.0%

I’m currently on Slicehost and Rackspace Cloud. They’ve been pretty good so far but Amazon’s cloud computing offering is beginning to look quite tempting.

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