Amazon EBS Volume types


Understanding Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS) volume types is crucial for optimizing performance and costs in your AWS environment. In this guide, we'll break down the three main EBS volume types

  • General Purpose SSD
  • Provisioned IOPS SSD
  • Throughput Optimized HDD/Cold HDD

1. General Purpose SSD Volumes:


General Purpose SSD volumes, represented by the gp3 type, offer a balanced mix of performance and cost-effectiveness for a variety of workloads.

Use Cases:

  1. Virtual Servers Boot Volumes:
    • Ideal for launching virtual servers quickly.
    • Balanced I/O performance for boot volumes.
  2. Small to Medium-sized Databases:
    • Cost-effective storage for databases with moderate I/O needs.
    • Suitable for applications with diverse workloads.
  3. Development and Test Environments:
    • Affordable storage for non-production environments.
    • Balanced performance for testing applications.

2. Provisioned IOPS SSD Volumes:


Provisioned IOPS SSD volumes, represented by io2 and io1 types, are designed for applications demanding consistent and predictable I/O performance.

Use Cases:

  1. High-performance Databases:
    • Ensures low-latency and high-throughput for transactional databases.
    • Critical for applications requiring intensive I/O operations.
  2. Business-critical Applications:
    • Predictable performance for applications sensitive to I/O latency.
    • Customizable IOPS settings for specific performance requirements.
  3. Big Data and Analytics Applications:
    • High-performance storage for data-intensive analytics workloads.
    • Consistent I/O throughput for big data processing.

3. Throughput Optimized HDD and Cold HDD Volumes:


Throughput Optimized HDD and Cold HDD volumes are designed for large, sequential I/O workloads, with Throughput Optimized HDD suitable for frequent access and Cold HDD for infrequent access.

Use Cases

  1. Throughput Optimized HDD - Big Data Processing:
    • Ideal for Hadoop and Spark environments.
    • High throughput for large-scale data processing.
  2. Throughput Optimized HDD - Data Warehousing:
    • Well-suited for data warehousing applications.
    • Supports large sequential data access patterns.
  3. Cold HDD - Data Archiving and Backup:
    • Cost-effective storage for infrequently accessed data.
    • Perfect for long-term storage compliance needs.


Choosing the right Amazon EBS volume type is pivotal for optimizing your AWS storage. Whether you need balanced performance, high I/O predictability, or throughput for specific workloads, understanding these EBS types empowers you to make informed decisions. Consider the use cases outlined above to guide your selection process and strike the perfect balance between performance and cost-efficiency.

Sure, here is the information presented in a table:

FeatureGeneral Purpose SSD volumes (gp3)Provisioned IOPS SSD volumes (io1, io2)
Volume typegp3io1, io2, Block Express 3
Durability99.8% - 99.9% durability (0.1% - 0.2% annual failure rate)99.999% durability (0.001% annual failure rate)
Use cases- Transactional workloads- Workloads that require Sub-millisecond latency
- Virtual desktops- Sustained IOPS performance
- Medium-sized, single-instance databases- More than 64,000 IOPS or 1,000 MiB/s of throughput
- Low-latency interactive applications- Workloads that require sustained IOPS performance
- Boot volumes- I/O-intensive database workloads
- Development and test environments
- Workloads that require:
Sub-millisecond latency
Sustained IOPS performance
More than 64,000 IOPS or 1,000 MiB/s of throughput
- Workloads that require sustained IOPS performance
- I/O-intensive database workloads
Volume size1 GiB - 16 TiB4 GiB - 64 TiB (io1, io2), 4 GiB - 16 TiB (Block Express 3)
Max IOPS per volume16,000 (64 KiB I/O)16,000 (16 KiB I/O) (io1, io2), 256,000 (16 KiB I/O) (Block Express 3)
Max throughput per volume1,000 MiB/s250 MiB/s (io1, io2), 4,000 MiB/s (Block Express 3)
Amazon EBS Multi-attachNot supportedSupported
NVMe reservationsNot supportedSupported (io1, io2)
Boot volumeSupportedSupported

Please note that the information is based on the latest available data and may be subject to changes. Always refer to the official AWS documentation for the most up-to-date information.

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For more in-depth information and updates, refer to the official AWS documentation.