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Fastest AWS EC2 Instances Hit General Availability

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Inc. this week launched its newest EC2 instance category, C4, based on the Intel Haswell processor.

The C4 instances were first announced at last November's AWS re:Invent conference by AWS Chief Technology Officer Werner Vogels, who touted them as being the fastest EC2 instances to date. In a blog post Monday, AWS evangelist Jeff Barr said the C4 instances "are designed to deliver the highest level of processor performance on EC2."

C4 instances are designed for compute-intensive workloads, such as online gaming, risk-analysis and simulation applications, and are optimized for use with AWS Elastic Block Storage (EBS). They have a base speed of 2.9 GHz, but can reach speeds of 3.5 GHz with the included support for Intel Turbo Boost technology.

The smallest C4 instance supports two virtual CPUs with a dedicated EBS throughput of 500 Mbps, while the largest supports 36 virtual CPUs and a dedicated throughput of 4,000 Mbps. The table below breaks down the C4 lineup:

Source: AWS Official Blog

Currently, the C4 instances are available in seven of the 11 AWS regions: Oregon, Northern California, Northern Virginia, Ireland, Tokyo, Singapore and Sydney. Barr said they will be available in additional regions "soon."

The AWS rollout of its C4 instances closely follows the Microsoft launch of its new G-Series for Azure Virtual Machines, which it claims "provide[s] the most memory, the highest processing power and the largest amount of local SSD of any Virtual Machine size currently available in the public cloud." Also based on the Intel Haswell chip, the G-Series supports up to 32 virtual CPUs, with 6.59TB of solid-state drive space and 448GB of memory.

About the Author

Gladys Rama is the senior site producer for Redmondmag.com, RCPmag.com and MCPmag.com.

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