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InfoQ Homepage News Amazon Introduces Intelligent-Tiering for S3 Storage to Automatically Optimize Costs

Amazon Introduces Intelligent-Tiering for S3 Storage to Automatically Optimize Costs

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Amazon introduces a new S3 Storage tier called Intelligent-Tiering which optimizes storage costs by automatically selecting the most cost-effective storage tier based on usage patterns. This new tier can help reduce costs for customers infrequently accessing their data in S3.

At the recent AWS re:Invent 2018, Amazon announced several new Amazon S3 capabilities to provide customers more ability to scale and cost optimize their storage infrastructure. Amazon S3 Intelligent-Tiering is a new Amazon S3 storage class that automatically optimizes customers’ storage costs for data with unknown or changing access patterns. It also provides dynamic tiering by automatically moving data to the most cost-effective storage tier. Accordingly, customers who have data with changing access trends can benefit the most from using this new tier. 

With S3 Intelligent-Tiering customers will have a new storage class, which incorporates two access tiers: frequent access and infrequent access – both offering the same low latency as the Standard storage class. Furthermore, S3 Intelligent-Tiering monitors access patterns and moves objects that have not been accessed for 30 consecutive days to the infrequent access tier. For a user accessing the data in the infrequent tier, the storage service will automatically move back the data to the frequent access tier.

A typical usage of the S3 Intelligent-Tier starts with a user selecting the new storage class when uploading the data. Subsequently, the user can through the management of the S3 Storage set Lifecycle Rules that make use of Intelligent-Tiering for the data.

According to Jeff Barr, chief evangelist for AWS, there are a few considerations around Intelligent-Tiering :

  • Object Size – You can use Intelligent-Tiering for objects of any size, but objects smaller than 128 KB will never be transitioned to the infrequent access tier and will be billed at the usual rate for the frequent access tier.
  • Object Life – This is not a good fit for objects that live for less than 30 days; all objects will be billed for a minimum of 30 days.
  • Durability & Availability – The Intelligent-Tiering storage class is designed for 99.9% availability and 99.999999999% durability, with an SLA that provides for 99.0% availability.
  • Pricing – Just like the other storage classes, you pay for monthly storage, requests, and data transfer. Storage for objects in the frequent access tier is billed at the same rate as S3 Standard; storage for objects in the infrequent access tier is billed at the same rate as S3 Standard-Infrequent Access. When you use Intelligent-Tiering, you pay a small monthly per-object fee for monitoring and automation.
  • Query in Place – Queries made using S3 Select do not alter the storage tier. 
  • API and CLI Access – You can use the storage class INTELLIGENT_TIERING from the S3 CLI and S3 APIs.

One of Amazon's partners, Rubrik - a cloud data management company, provides customers with a single solution to protect and manage their data from on-premises to the cloud. Rubrik will now support the new Amazon S3 Intelligent-Tiering Storage, and thus provide customers with an additional option to further optimize their cloud archive storage costs. Arvind Nithrakashyap, co-founder and chief technology officer at Rubrik, said

Many Rubrik customers leverage S3 to support their data archiving and disaster recovery needs. However, mapping application data to and managing it across cloud storage tiers is challenging. Rubrik's integration with the new S3 Intelligent-Tiering storage class is a big step forward in empowering companies to leverage the right class of storage by usage and by economics, while managing and accessing it seamlessly via Rubrik's data control plane.

Amazon itself will benefit too from S3 Intelligent-Tiering. Sam Barhoumeh, founder and CEO of ReadyNetworks, an Evanston, Illinois-based solution provider and AWS channel partner, said in a CRN article:

This allows Amazon to free up more valuable storage for data that needs it, saving them money that might otherwise be spent on having to build premium storage for people who do not want to pay for it.

The new storage tier is available in all AWS Regions and AWS GovCloud (US). Furthermore, details on the S3 Intelligent-Tiering storage class is available on the Amazon S3 Storage Classes page.

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