Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud

Definition of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is a web-based service provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS) that offers scalable, on-demand computing resources for businesses and developers. Users can create and manage virtual machines, known as instances, to run applications and workloads in a flexible, cost-effective manner. This service enables easy scaling, fast provisioning, and efficient management of compute capacity in the AWS cloud.


The phonetics of the keyword “Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud” can be represented as:- Amazon: /ˈæməˌzɒn/- Elastic: /ɪˈlæstɪk/- Compute: /kəmˈpjuːt/- Cloud: /klaʊd/

Key Takeaways

  1. Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) provides scalable computing resources in the AWS cloud, allowing you to easily setup, manage, and scale virtual servers based on your requirements.
  2. EC2 offers a variety of instance types and sizes to choose from, including instances optimized for CPU, memory, storage, and GPU processing, making it suitable for a wide range of workloads and applications.
  3. Amazon EC2 is highly integrated with other AWS services such as Elastic Load Balancing, Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS), and Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), making it easy to build and deploy various solutions in the cloud.

Importance of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is a significant technological term as it represents a vital component of Amazon Web Services (AWS) — a leading cloud computing platform.

EC2 enables users to efficiently rent virtual computers, eliminating the need to maintain and manage physical hardware on-premises.

By providing scalable computing capacity, EC2 facilitates organizations in quickly deploying applications and handling workload fluctuations.

The service offers various instance types and configurations to cater to diverse industry needs, whether it be data storage or high-performance computing.

Its dynamic, flexible, and cost-effective model strengthens infrastructure resilience, allowing businesses to focus on innovation and enhancing IT efficiency.


Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) serves as a central component in the world of cloud computing, offering resizable virtual servers to organizations and individuals looking to run applications and workloads with ease and flexibility. One of the primary purposes of Amazon EC2 is to provide businesses with the ability to scale up or down their compute resources according to their needs, saving both time and money otherwise spent on maintaining physical infrastructure.

With EC2, users receive a virtual environment tailored to their respective requirements, enabling them to run diverse applications such as batch processing, big data analysis, web hosting, gaming, enterprise applications, and scientific simulations. Amazon EC2 empowers developers with an array of specialized tools and features to create, manage, and monitor their virtual instances efficiently.

The platform supports multiple operating systems, programming languages, and frameworks, allowing for seamless compatibility with existing software and frameworks. Through its easy-to-use web service interface, companies can rapidly acquire, configure, and deploy virtual servers (also known as instances) within minutes.

Furthermore, EC2 offers various pre-configured templates, called Amazon Machine Images (AMIs), which facilitate rapid instance set-up based on users’ preferences. By eliminating the burden of managing physical infrastructure and offering the freedom to allocate resources as needed, Amazon EC2 allows businesses of all sizes to focus on innovation and deployment while enjoying increased performance, reliability, and efficiency.

Examples of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud

Netflix: One of the most popular real-world examples of utilizing Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is Netflix, the online streaming service. Netflix uses AWS, primarily EC2, to power their global operations and ensure seamless streaming of content to millions of subscribers. EC2 instances enable Netflix to easily scale up or down, responding to customer demands and thus providing a reliable, low-latency, and high-quality streaming experience.

Airbnb: Airbnb, the popular platform for short-term rental bookings, initially moved to AWS and EC2 in

They heavily rely on Amazon EC2 to run their back-end systems, mobile applications, and website. With the on-demand flexibility of EC2 instances, Airbnb can scale its infrastructure when their platform receives an increased volume of bookings or user activity during peak periods, such as holidays or major events.

Shell: Petroleum giant Shell is another example of a company that leverages the power of Amazon EC2 for its technology needs. As part of their digital transformation strategy, Shell moved its IT infrastructure to AWS, using EC2 instances for various workloads, including computational fluid dynamics and seismic imaging. These workloads help them optimize their operations and identify new energy opportunities by processing and analyzing large volumes of data. This transition has enabled Shell to increase efficiency and reduce costs while staying agile and better equipped to innovate in a competitive business landscape.

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) FAQ

1. What is Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)?

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is a web service that provides resizable compute capacity in the cloud. It is designed to make web-scale cloud computing easier for developers, allowing them to obtain and configure capacity with minimal friction.

2. What are the key features of Amazon EC2?

Some key features of Amazon EC2 include resizable compute capacity, multiple instances types, security groups, on-demand pricing, spot instances, reserved instances, and dedicated hosts.

3. What is an EC2 instance?

An EC2 instance is a virtual server in Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud for running applications on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure.

4. How do I get started with Amazon EC2?

To get started with Amazon EC2, you need to sign up for an AWS account, create a key pair, configure a security group, launch an instance, and connect to your instance. You can find step-by-step instructions in the Amazon EC2 documentation.

5. How am I charged for my use of Amazon EC2?

Amazon EC2 offers several pricing options, including on-demand instances, reserved instances, spot instances, and dedicated hosts. Charges are primarily based on running instances, data transfer, and storage usage.

6. What are the benefits of using Amazon EC2?

Amazon EC2 offers several benefits, including ease of use, scalability, flexibility, security, and cost-effectiveness.

7. Can I use my existing applications and tools with Amazon EC2?

Yes, you can use your existing applications and tools with Amazon EC2. It supports a wide range of operating systems, programming languages, and frameworks.

8. What is the difference between an Amazon EC2 instance and a dedicated host?

An Amazon EC2 instance is a virtual server that shares hardware resources with other instances, whereas a dedicated host is a physical server that is dedicated to a single customer and provides greater control over instance placement and visibility of the underlying hardware.

Related Technology Terms

  • Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)
  • Amazon Machine Image (AMI)
  • Auto Scaling Groups
  • Elastic Load Balancer (ELB)
  • EC2 Instance Types

Sources for More Information


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