Feeds

You've got $60k: So, 2013 sporty Corvette, or a year of AWS's new I2 beast?

244GB of RAM, 6400GB of SSD, 32 virtual CPUs at Amazon's Virtualization Palace

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Amazon has soothed developers miffed at the notorious variability of its rentable servers with a new expensive class of reliable instances.

The "I2" instances were officially launched by Amazon on Friday after being previewed at its AWS re:invent show in November, and see the company bring SSD-backed servers with fast networking to seven of its ten global data center hubs.

The four new instances range from 30.5GB of RAM, 800GB of SSD storage, and four virtual CPUs for $0.85 per hour all the way up to the titanic i2.8xlarge instance – 244GB of RAM, 6400GB of SSD, 32 virtual CPUs for $6.82.

The latter configuration will set you back $59,743 for a full year of operation, or $27,871 for 12 months if buying via a one-year "medium utilization" contract. The $60k cost is roughly equivalent to six reasonably well-specced Dell PowerEdge R910 servers with 64GB of RAM and two ten-core Xeon E7-4850 processors, albeit not including the electricity and other infrastructure bills, or simply a 2013 Chevrolet Corvette grand sport convertible.

A quick analysis via El Reg's stat-o-matic cloud model shows this (on-demand price-per-hour, Linux-based) pricing tracks Amazon's general model, and slightly tightens competition with Google's Compute Engine.

The instances mandate the use of Linux, rather than Windows, as they only support hardware virtualization (HVM) machine images – which requires use of either the Amazon Linux image, or virtual machines with version 3.8 or later of the Linux kernel.

Amazon Web Services RAM versus Google graph

The I2 instances, labeled red "Amazon new", close in on Google's generous RAM allocations (click to enlarge)

As with many other Amazon instances, these ones depend on whopping great Xeon processors from Intel. In this case, the E5-2670 v2 (Ivy Bridge) chips, which come with support for Advanced Vector Extensions, Turbo Boost, and Non-Uniform Memory Access (NUMA).

All four of the instances use the "Enhanced Networking" AWS feature, which uses single-root IO virtualization (SR-IOV) to give instances a higher packet-per-second rate and lower inter-instance latencies.

SR-IOV lets single PCIe devices such as network adapters expose themselves up to virtual machines as a variety of distinct hardware surfaces with a physical function.

By adding these capabilities to the instances and combining them with the large SSD allocations, Amazon is ensuring that the new servers will have more reliable performance than some of the low-cost virtual machines, and that they can be used to run multiple IO-intensive applications such as real-time web-oriented databases. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
The cloud that goes puff: Seagate Central home NAS woes
4TB of home storage is great, until you wake up to a dead device
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Intel offers ingenious piece of 10TB 3D NAND chippery
The race for next generation flash capacity now on
Want to STUFF Facebook with blatant ADVERTISING? Fine! But you must PAY
Pony up or push off, Zuck tells social marketeers
Oi, Europe! Tell US feds to GTFO of our servers, say Microsoft and pals
By writing a really angry letter about how it's harming our cloud business, ta
SAVE ME, NASA system builder, from my DEAD WORKSTATION
Anal-retentive hardware nerd in paws-on workstation crisis
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.