What is Amazon ElastiCache for Memcached? - Amazon ElastiCache

What is Amazon ElastiCache for Memcached?

Welcome to the Amazon ElastiCache for Memcached User Guide. Amazon ElastiCache is a web service that makes it easy to set up, manage, and scale a distributed in-memory data store or cache environment in the cloud. It provides a high-performance, scalable, and cost-effective caching solution. At the same time, it helps remove the complexity associated with deploying and managing a distributed cache environment.

You can operate Amazon ElastiCache in two formats. You can get started with a serverless cache or choose to design your own cache cluster.


Amazon ElastiCache works with both the Redis and Memcached engines. Use the guide for the engine that you're interested in. If you're unsure which engine you want to use, see Comparing Memcached and Redis self-designed caches in this guide.

Serverless caching

ElastiCache for Memcached offers serverless caching, which simplifies adding and operating a Memcached based cache for your application. ElastiCache for Memcached Serverless enables you to create a highly available cache in under a minute, and eliminates the need to provision instances or configure nodes or clusters. Developers can create a Serverless cache by specifying the cache name using the ElastiCache console, SDK or CLI.

ElastiCache Serverless also removes the need to plan and manage caching capacity. ElastiCache constantly monitors the cache’s memory and compute used by your application, and automatically scales capacity to meet the needs of your application. ElastiCache offers a simple endpoint experience for developers, by abstracting the underlying cache infrastructure and software. ElastiCache manages hardware provisioning, monitoring, node replacements, and software patching automatically and transparently, so that you can focus application development, rather than operating the cache.

ElastiCache for Memcached Serverless is compatible with Memcached 1.6 and above.

Designing your own ElastiCache for Memcached cluster

If you need fine-grained control over your ElastiCache for Memcached cluster, you can choose to design your own Memcached cluster with ElastiCache. ElastiCache enables you to operate a node-based cluster, by choosing the node-type, number of nodes, and node placement across AWS Availability Zones for your cluster. Since, ElastiCache is a fully-managed service, it automatically manages hardware provisioning, monitoring, node replacements, and software patching for your cluster.

Designing your own ElastiCache for Memcached cluster offers greater flexibility and control over your clusters. For example, you can choose to operate a cluster with single-AZ availability or cross-AZ availability depending on your needs. When designing your own clusters, you are responsible for choosing the type and number of nodes correctly to ensure that your cache has enough capacity as required by your application. You can also choose when to apply new software patches to your Memcached cluster.

When designing your own ElastiCache for Memcached, you can choose to run Memcached 1.4 and above.