EC2 Instance Types

Amazon EC2 lets you provision different types of instances, which provide different combinations of CPU, memory, disk, and networking to suit different use cases.  If you have comparison questions around pricing, check out the AWS monthly calculator. Amazon EC2 dedicates some resources of the host computer, such as CPU, memory, and instance storage, to a particular instance. It shares other resources of the host computer, such as the network and the disk subsystem, among instances. If each instance on a host computer tries to use as much of these shared resources as possible, then each instance gets an equal share of that resource. However, if a resource is underutilized, an instance can consume a higher share of that shared resource when it’s available.

On a broader scale, Amazon provides the below 5 categories of instance types – 

  • General Purpose – A1, T3, T2, M5, M4
  • Compute Optimized –  C5, C5n, C4
  • Memory Optimized – R5, R4, X1e, X1, High Memory Instances, z1d
  • Accelerated Computing – P3, P2, G3, F1
  • Storage Optimized – H1, I3, D2

The below tables discuss these 5 categories and the respective instance types that each category provides.

EC2 General Purpose

EC2 Compute Optimized

EC2 Memory Optimized

Accelerated Computing

Storage Optimized



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