End of an Era – EC2-Classic Retiring

I first tried out EC2 from AWS in late 2008 and wrote this simple post about it. I wrote about (the very few) EC2 instance types in the early days…. How to do things like ping EC2 instances after enabling security group rules using early AWS CLI tools…. Some of the early tools, like Elasticfox Firefox Extension for Amazon EC2, prior to AWS Console having tyese types of features…. My EC2 Server That Ran For Over 5 Years…. And the impressively high volumes we served….. All on the EC2 Classic network.

Although for quite sometime I haven’t actively run production EC2 instances outside of a VPC I still do so for fun once-in-a-while, and talk about it when I’m teaching others about AWS, but it did come as a bit of a surprise when AWS announced the official retirement of EC2 Classic. And now I’m seeing notices like this in accounts which have access to EC2 Classic:

EC2 Classic Deprication notice in AWS Console.

Many folks, particularly those who created AWS accounts after late 2013 don’t even have the option to launch instances in EC2 Classic. And even for those of us with older accounts we can’t launch in EC2 Classic in several newer regions anyway. There are a couple of ways to know if your account has the ability to launch in EC2 Classic (for now at least….). First, in the Console – on the EC2 Dashboard look under Account Attributes on the right side. This may not tell the whole picture though as if you are in a region (like the newer Ohio) that doesn’t support EC2 Classic you’ll only see the VPC option anyway.

One account, two regions – one supporting EC2 Classic, the other not.

The other, and more definitive way is to use the AWS CLI and run the following command, which will indicate if your account is or is not enabled for EC2 Classic.

aws ec2 describe-account-attributes –attribute-names supported-platforms –output json

Two different accounts, one with EC2 Classic capability, the other not.

It’s kind of bitter sweet to think about AWS retiring EC2 Classic as I have extensive experience running in that environment, although I haven’t actively used it for years. So I guess it’s just a formality, for me anyway, that they are retiring one of the original AWS services.

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