Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud
User Guide for Linux (API Version 2015-04-15)
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Reserved Instances

You can use Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Reserved Instances to reserve capacity and receive a discount on your instance usage compared to running On-Demand instances. The discounted usage price is reserved for the duration of your contract, allowing you to predict compute costs over the term of the Reserved Instance. When you want to use the capacity you reserved, you launch an EC2 instance with the same configuration as the reserved capacity that you purchased. Amazon Web Services (AWS) will automatically apply the usage price that is associated with your capacity reservation. You are charged that usage price for your EC2 instance for as long as you own the Reserved Instance.

When the term of your Reserved Instance ends, and you do not renew by purchasing another Reserved Instance, you can continue using the EC2 instance without interruption. However, you will now be charged at the On-Demand rate.

To purchase an Amazon EC2 Reserved Instance, you must select a platform (e.g. Linux/UNIX) instance type (such as m1.small), Availability Zone (location), term (either one-year or three-year), and tenancy (dedicated or default). You can use Auto Scaling or other AWS services to launch the On-Demand instances that utilize your Reserved Instance benefits. For information about launching On-Demand instances, see Launch Your Instance. For information about launching instances using Auto Scaling, see the Auto Scaling Developer Guide.

If you would like to purchase a Reserved Instance to cover a m1.small, Linux/UNIX, default tenancy instance in US-East-1a, the Reserved Instance that you purchased should be configured as a m1.small, Linux/UNIX, default tenancy Reserved Instance in US-East-1a.

For product pricing information, see the following pages:

Reserved Instance Overview

The following information will help you get started working with Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances:

  • Complete all the prerequisite tasks first—such as registration, signing up, and installing the tools—so you can start working with Reserved Instances. For more information, see Getting Started with Reserved Instances.

  • Before you buy and sell Reserved Instances, you can learn more about the process by reading Steps for Using Reserved Instances.

  • Standard one- and three-year terms for Reserved Instances are available for purchase from AWS, and non-standard terms are available for purchase from third-party resellers through the Reserved Instance Marketplace.

  • Learn more about the pricing benefit of Reserved Instances. For more information, see Understanding the Pricing Benefit of Reserved Instances.

  • Understand Reserved Instance pricing tiers and how to take advantage of discount pricing. For more information, see Understanding Reserved Instance Discount Pricing Tiers.

  • You can sell your unused Reserved Instances in the Reserved Instance Marketplace. The Reserved Instance Marketplace makes it possible for sellers who have Reserved Instances that they no longer need to find buyers who are looking to purchase additional capacity. Reserved Instances bought and sold through the Reserved Instance Marketplace work like any other Reserved Instances. For more information, see Reserved Instance Marketplace.

For a checklist that summarizes requirements for working with Reserved Instances and the Reserved Instance Marketplace, see Requirements Checklist for Reserved Instances.