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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Glossary of Amazon EC2 terms

Amazon machine image (AMI)
An Amazon Machine Image (AMI) is an encrypted machine image stored in Amazon S3. It contains all the information necessary to boot instances of your software.

Amazon EBS
A type of storage that enables you to create volumes that can be mounted as devices by Amazon EC2 instances. Amazon EBS volumes behave like raw unformatted external block devices. They have user supplied device names and provide a block device interface. You can load a file system on top of Amazon EBS volumes, or use them just as you would use a block device.

Availability Zone
A distinct location within a region that is engineered to be insulated from failures in other Availability Zones and provides inexpensive, low latency network connectivity to other Availability Zones in the same region.

compute unit
An Amazon-generated measure that enables you to evaluate the CPU capacity of different Amazon EC2 instance types.

EBS
See Amazon EBS.

Elastic Block Store
See Amazon EBS.

elastic IP address
A static public IP address designed for dynamic cloud computing. Elastic IP addresses are associated with your account, not specific instances. Any elastic IP addresses that you associate with your account remain associated with your account until you explicitly release them. Unlike traditional static IP addresses, however, elastic IP addresses allow you to mask instance or Availability Zone failures by rapidly remapping your public IP addresses to any instance in your account.

ephemeral store
See instance store.

explicit launch permission
Launch permission granted to a specific user.

group
See security group.

instance store
Every instance includes a fixed amount of storage space on which you can store data. This is not designed to be a permanent storage solution. If you need a permanent storage system, use Amazon EBS.

instance type
A specification that defines the memory, CPU, storage capacity, and hourly cost for an instance. Some instance types are designed for standard applications while others are designed for CPU-intensive applications.

gibibyte (GiB)
a contraction of giga binary byte, a gibibyte is 2^30 bytes or 1,073,741,824 bytes. A gigabyte is 10^9 or 1,000,000,000 bytes. So yes, Amazon has bigger bytes.

image
See Amazon machine image.

instance
Once an AMI has been launched, the resulting running system is referred to as an instance. All instances based on the same AMI start out identical and any information on them is lost when the instances are terminated or fail.

instance store
The disk storage associated with an instance. In the event an instance fails or is terminated (not simply rebooted), all content on the instance store is deleted.

group
Also known as a security group, groups define firewall rules that can be shared among a group of instances that have similar security requirements. The group is specified at instance launch.

launch permission
AMI attribute allowing users to launch an AMI

Linux
Amazon EC2 instances are available for many operating platforms, including Linux, Solaris, Windows, and others.

paid AMI
An AMI that you sell to other Amazon EC2 users. For more information, refer to the Amazon DevPay Developer Guide.

private IP address
All Amazon EC2 instances are assigned two IP addresses at launch: a private address (RFC 1918) and a public address that are directly mapped to each other through Network Address Translation (NAT).

public AMI
An AMI that all users have launch permissions for.

public data sets
Sets of large public data sets that can be seamlessly integrated into AWS cloud-based applications. Amazon stores the data sets at no charge to the community and, like all AWS services, users pay only for the compute and storage they use for their own applications. These data sets currently include data from the Human Genome Project, the U.S. Census, Wikipedia, and other sources.

public IP address
All Amazon EC2 instances are assigned two IP addresses at launch: a private address (RFC 1918) and a public address that are directly mapped to each other through Network Address Translation (NAT).

region
A geographical area in which you can launch instances (e.g., US, EU).

reservation
A collection of instances started as part of the same launch request.

Reserved Instance
An additional Amazon EC2 pricing option. With Reserved Instances, you can make a low one-time payment for each instance to reserve and receive a significant discount on the hourly usage charge for that instance.

security group
A security group is a named collection of access rules. These access rules specify which ingress (i.e., incoming) network traffic should be delivered to your instance. All other ingress traffic will be discarded.

shared AMI
AMIs that developers build and make available for other AWS developers to use.

Solaris
Amazon EC2 instances are available for many operating platforms, including Linux, Solaris, Windows, and others.

snapshot
Amazon EBS provides the ability to create snapshots or backups of your Amazon EBS volumes and store them in Amazon S3. You can use these snapshots as the starting point for new Amazon EBS volumes and to protect your data for long term durability.

supported AMIs
These AMIs are similar to paid AMIs, except that you charge for software or a service that customers use with their own AMIs.

tebibyte (TiB)
a contraction of tera binary byte, a tebibyte is 2^40 bytes or 1,099,511,627,776 bytes. A terabyte is 10^12 or 1,000,000,000,000 bytes. So yes, Amazon has bigger bytes.

UNIX
Amazon EC2 instances are available for many operating platforms, including Linux, Solaris, Windows, and others.

Windows
Amazon EC2 instances are available for many operating platforms, including Linux, Solaris, Windows, and others.

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