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AWS Releases EC2 Bare-Metal Instances

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced the general availability of its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) bare-metal instances, nearly six months after unveiling the technology as a preview at the 2017 re:Invent conference.

EC2 bare-metal instances are available via AWS' i3.metal instance family and are based on the cloud giant's years-long "Nitro system" effort, the aim of which AWS officials described at last year's re:Invent as "[making] the EC2 instance indistinguishable from bare metal."

AWS touted some further benefits of running bare-metal instances in its general availability announcement last week. "Bare metal instances allow EC2 customers to run applications that benefit from deep performance analysis tools, specialized workloads that require direct access to bare metal infrastructure, legacy workloads not supported in virtual environments, and licensing-restricted Tier 1 business critical applications," the company said.

"Bare metal instances also make it possible for customers to run virtualization secured containers such as Clear Linux Containers."

For nearly a year now, this bare-metal technology has provided the backbone for AWS and VMware's joint hybrid cloud solution, which was launched last August.

"Bare metal instances enable VMware to run their full suite of software, including vSphere Hypervisor, directly on EC2 managed infrastructure," AWS said.

AWS first launched the i3 instances in early 2017, touting them as the ideal instance family to run I/O-intensive workloads. The i3.metal instances are based on Intel's Xeon E5-2686 v4 (Broadwell) processors and feature 72 virtual CPUs (on 36 hyper-threaded cores), 512GiB of memory and EBS bandwidth of 10,000 Mbps.

About the Author

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

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