Amazon EFS vs Amazon EBS


What are the key differences between Amazon EFS and Amazon EBS storage options? In what scenarios would you recommend using each?

1 Answer
Accepted Answer

Amazon EFS (Elastic File System):

  • A fully managed, elastic, and scalable Network File System (NFS) that supports the NFSv4 protocol.
  • Can be accessed concurrently by multiple Amazon EC2 instances, allowing them to share data.
  • Automatically scales as you add or remove files, with no need to provision storage capacity in advance.
  • Designed to be highly available, durable, and support petabyte-scale workloads.
  • Ideal for use cases such as content management systems, big data analytics, web servers, home directories, and container storage.
  • Performance can be provisioned based on your needs, with the option to choose between two performance modes: General Purpose (default) and Max I/O.
  • Offers two storage classes: Standard and One Zone, with One Zone being a lower-cost option that stores data in a single availability zone.

Amazon EBS (Elastic Block Store):

  • Provides block-level storage volumes that can be attached to a single EC2 instance.
  • Ideal for workloads that require low-latency access to data, such as databases, boot volumes, or applications that need raw block-level storage.
  • Supports a range of volume types designed for different performance characteristics and costs:
  • General Purpose SSD (gp2/gp3): Balanced price and performance for a wide variety of transactional workloads.
  • Provisioned IOPS SSD (io1/io2): Designed for I/O-intensive workloads like databases that require low-latency and high throughput.
  • Throughput Optimized HDD (st1): Designed for frequently accessed, throughput-intensive workloads such as big data, data warehouses, and log processing.
  • Cold HDD (sc1): Designed for less frequently accessed, throughput-oriented workloads like backup and archival data.
  • Magnetic (standard): Low-cost, infrequently accessed storage, mostly for backward compatibility.
  • EBS volumes can be easily backed up using EBS snapshots, which are point-in-time copies stored in Amazon S3.
  • Offers the ability to create EBS-optimized instances for better performance and consistency.
  • Supports encryption at rest for data stored on the volume and data in transit between the instance and the volume.

In summary, choose Amazon EFS when you need a shared file system that can be accessed by multiple EC2 instances concurrently, and opt for Amazon EBS when you require low-latency block storage that can be attached to a single EC2 instance.

profile picture
answered a year ago
profile pictureAWS
reviewed a year ago

You are not logged in. Log in to post an answer.

A good answer clearly answers the question and provides constructive feedback and encourages professional growth in the question asker.

Guidelines for Answering Questions