AWS Novice Guide for Storage

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AWS Novice Guide for Storage

Larry W

I am new to AWS and would like to know what is the difference between S3 and EBS. What should I use when I want to store my database.

This discussion contains 5 replies and has 31 views.



EBS is storage for AWS EC2 instance while S3 is internet based storage system. If you compare in computer terms though not literally EBS is like hard disk / USB drive or NAS Storage while S3 is FTP based storage. EBS is like a plug and play device which can be attached to an instance at a time but can be detached from any instance and then attached to other instance same like USB drive. It can not be accessed from internet directly as it is required to be attached to EC2 instance while S3 can be accessed from internet directly.


Tarun Dave

EBS will have Operating system and it is used to store your DB or other application related files. The data can be persisted with snapshots which will be stored in S3.

For S3 it is very highly durable storage service which is used to store media content, hosting static websites, archives.


Jithesh x Jithu

EBS is traditional block storage device while S3 is internet based file storage service.

In terms of performance S3 has the higher latency comparing EBS. For throughput S3 has more throughput while EBS has limited throughput which depends on instance size. The new offering of optimized IOPS can help improve throughput.


Taral Shah

For search S3 is slower as search is by prefix while EBS is faster as the data is indexed.

S3 costs $0.095 per GB for storage while EBS costs 10 cents per GB. Also the cost of S3 decreases when storage size increases while for EBS it is constant. S3 also offers cheaper storage like RRS or archiving service like Glacier to optimize the cost.


Ron Hoffman


for detailed analysis and understanding of EBS


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