When I started with Amazon AWS I used the free teir for a year and then kept paying for it as I have been running all of my websites and freeswitch on it. I don’t really need freeswitch; since all my sites are static I could get away with using Amazon S3 to host it. In fact I do for http://services.athnex.com. So the following is a quick background on some things I’ve done since when I started using AWS for my hosting solutions.
The t2.nano server has 512mb of ram rather than 2gigs. I run nginx and static websites which requires very little ram. Freeswitch requires a few hundred mb at most when busy and at most I only do one call. If I come into some extra funds I will setup a hotline for one of my other websites, a joke hotline. So dont think im serious. But don’t tell people who think the sites are serious they aren’t serious. (Shhh! This is our little secret!)
I began using the free teir in November 2012, and at the time only qualifying free trial instance was a t1.micro. I was happy with the cost of this (especialy for a free virtual machine.) and I paid for it for a while. I eventually realized they had a t2.micro for less than a t1.micro of just a few hours ago I was running on a t2.micro instance. Which, a year or so ago was the smallest VM they ran. A t2.micro instance costs $0.013 an hour (in a typical month there is is 720 to 744 hours) my EC 2 instance cost was approx $9.67 a month on 31 day months. The t2.nano runs $0.0065 an hour which adds up to be about $4.84 a month give or take; a mear half the price!
Its tempting to load up a second VM for things. I dont know what yet, but if I get a lil bit of money I’ll run more VMs to do things. Until then I just gotta stick with my ghetto websites and my ghetto hosting.
The new ec2 instance I named Tina dot Athnex dot Com. The old instance is named Sarah. So I had to create a fresh EBS volume that was at least 8gb, (this costs about $0.80 a month) and I mounted sarah’s ebs volume and the /opt volume, where I keep all my freeswitch source, install, and logs, and html data. Its on a 12gig magnetic storage. I don’t need speed or performace I just need storage. I’ve never had access to SSDs until lately and even then its still faster than I need.
After some time passes and I am sure I migrated everything over I will drop the sarah instance and the ebs volume for its root filesystem.
So this mostly goes out as a PSA to those who are using AWS for your hosting and dont need much power and 512mb of ram will satisfy your low power usage, make sure you’re using the ec2 t2.nano instance. Its not eligble for the free year but Ive been a customer for a few years now and have always been happy. Everything has always just worked and I will continue to pimp it to anyone who need virtual machines with no hassles and all configurable on the web.
The way I look at it, the powerful computers I started using when I got into the commercial computer industry are slower than the smallest ec2 instance that amazon provides. The smallest instance also has more memory than those servers did, and at the time they worked fine. All I do is serve html data and store call logs I only really need 1vcpu (Cause you cant have 0) with one OS drive and optionally I have a provisioned EBS Magnetic Storage partition that contains /opt for all my non packaged software and html data and my the CDRs which are my call logs. I have since the past moved away from using server side scripting or software to dynamicly change a website that rarely changes, its a lot of extra wasted CPU and memory, instead I just generate the pages I need and only use dynamic pages where nessicary. I am using nginx which is an awesome daemon that is way more effecient than apache. So I can serve mad amounts of static html data. Most of my picture images are stored on Amazon S3 as well as any other large static data that doesn’t change. I assume they can distribute more bandwidth than I ever will need. They’ll certianly bill me for it.
I included some links below so that you can see where I got my infos from, cause a lovely person named biohazard on the IRC told me about the t2.nano. Sure I could have read the docs and found it myself, but I was too set in my ways to read up on the new updates.