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Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Benchmarking Amazon's New EC2 "C3" Instance Types

Michael Larabel

Published on 20 November 2013
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 4 - 2 Comments

Last week Amazon unveiled the new "C3" instance types for their Elastic Compute Cloud platform. The C3 instance types deliver their highest processor performance in Amazon's cloud. The C3 instances are backed by Intel Xeon E5 "Ivy Bridge" processors, use SSD-based storage, support AVX and Turbo as part of the Ivy Bridge feature set, and also deliver on improved network performance in the cloud. Coming out of Phoronix today for helping you measure cloud performance are benchmarks of all the new C3 instance types and compared to some bare metal systems running locally.

Amazon also announced new I/O-focused instance types last week too, but of most interest to us at Phoronix are the C3 instance types for compute-intensive workloads. Over the conventional C1 instances, the C3 instances use the faster Intel Ivy Bridge processors and double the memory per vCPU and use solid-state storage.

Here's a table out of Amazon Web Services with the new instance types using Intel Xeon E5-2680v2 CPUs:

Compared to the standard instances in Amazon's cloud, the pricing is quite good for the ECU performance and RAM capacity. For the Phoronix article today, I benchmarked all these new instances: c3.large, c3.xlarge, c3.2xlarge, c3.4xlarge, and c3.8xlarge. For all of the instances, I was using Ubuntu 13.10 64-bit as the guest operating system.

I didn't benchmark Amazon's older instance types but compared these new C3 results to some local hardware systems. If you want to gauge the performance against the C1 instance types, just recently I published the 5-Way Amazon EC2 Cloud Linux OS Comparison and Amazon EC2 Cloud Comparison Performance that features the different instance types.

From the results shown in this article, you can also see how the performance compares directly to your own (private or public) cloud or bare metal systems. All testing was facilitated in a fully automated and 100% reproducible manner using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite framework with OpenBenchmarking.org. To reproduce the same exact tests and compare them in a side-by-side manner to these results, it's as easy as just running phoronix-test-suite benchmark 1311209-SO-AMAZONEC351!

The c3.large, c3.xlarge, c3.2xlarge, c3.4xlarge, and c3.8xlarge on-demand instances in Virginia were compared to four systems I had running locally. The storage and RAM capacities varied but they were all running Ubuntu 13.10 64-bit and the processors for these systems included a quad-core AMD Opteron 2384, AMD FX-8150 Bulldozer, AMD FX-8350 Vishera, and Intel Core i7 4960X Ivy Bridge Extreme Edition system. All the information is shown on the table above and all Ubuntu 13.10 installations were used with their reference settings. All benchmarking was handled by the Phoronix Test Suite to be completely reproducible and accurate with carrying out multiple tests, measuring accuracy between runs, etc. If your company isn't familiar with the Phoronix Test Suite or looking for commercial support, contact us.

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