A week in the cloud…


cloudIt’s been just over a week since I moved my website over to “the cloud”. Well, an EC2 virtual machine on Amazon Web Services, so it’s Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), not really what I consider the cloud. 🙂

Overall I’m really happy with the way it’s gone so far. As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve gone for a VM that is significantly lower spec than the dedicated server I had before. I’ve been keeping an eye on it over the last week and I think I could probably get away with a smaller instance still. The T2 instances have burstable CPU, so you get a basic level of performance plus some extra credits every hour. If you need a little extra CPU, you can use up your credits. I’ll probably leave the VM running for another week before deciding if I should try dropping the spec further.

So far the price looks comparable to the old dedicated server, which sounds OK, but you have to remember:

  • It’s a much lower spec box (memory, CPU, disk capacity), so really it’s more expensive.
  • I’m still paying the on-demand price, not the reserved instance price, so it’s more expensive at the moment, compared to what it will be when I’ve made my final decision.

What I really like about the move is the additional flexibility I have now. I’ve spent years using virtualization at home and at work, but I’ve never had that flexibility with my website.



Author: Tim...

DBA, Developer, Author, Trainer.

2 thoughts on “A week in the cloud…”

  1. Why don’t you call Amazon EC2 ‘cloud’ ? I define ‘cloud’ as ‘someone else’s server’. How do you define it ?

    It may be more ‘expensive’ (same price for less hardware) but surely if it does the job (serves the site with no performance degradation) and has improved uptime, then that is an improvement ?

  2. Andy: Hello! 🙂

    For *me* the definition of cloud must include some value-add in relation to ease of use. I’ve used IaaS on Azure, AWS and Oracle Cloud. In all cases I’m left to do the same stuff I had to when I was on a physical box or a VM on a virtual infrastructure. For *me* it only becomes cloud when I have Platform as a Service (PaaS) or Software as a Service (SaaS), where the administration is simplified greatly. IaaS is just another hosting provider. It’s not really cloud in *my* book. That’s not to say it’s not cool or useful. It’s just not cloud to *me*.

    That’s just the way I feel about it, having used a number of hosting companies for business and personal use.

    Regarding the cost, I have a VM with 1/4 of the cores, 1/2 the memory and 1/10 of the disk space. Does it serve my purposes? Yes. Is the resource more expensive, look at the numbers above. It’s a statement of fact, it is more expensive for what I’ve got. If my requirement grows, so do my costs. On the old server, that was not the case. It’s just different, not worse, different.

    Regarding the uptime, at this point I can’t say decisively what was the problem with the old server. It ran very well for over 8 months, with just a couple of glitches that you can probably mark up as user error. The problems I experienced before this move may have been hardware, they may have been totally my fault. I don’t know. Comparing the last 8+ months to 9 days on AWS s hardly fair. 🙂

    As I said, I’m really happy with the move, but at the same time I cannot deny there are issues in making that move for some people. Replicating what I had on physical, but in the cloud would have been *significantly* more expensive that what I’m paying now. Just saying. 🙂



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