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InfoQ Homepage News After 15 Years AWS Retires EC2-Classic

After 15 Years AWS Retires EC2-Classic

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AWS has announced the plan to retire the EC2-Classic platform in the next few months. The cloud provider expects that customers still running the first iteration of its virtual cloud computing instance will migrate to the newest Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) by August 2022.

At the end of October, Amazon will disable EC2-Classic on any account that has no active EC2-Classic resources and will stop selling one-year and three-year reserved instances for EC2-Classic. AWS expects all migrations to be complete by August 2022, with no remaining EC2-Classic resources present in any deployment and mandatory VPC for all instances.

The EC2-Classic platform was introduced in the original release of Amazon EC2 in 2006 as a single network shared across customers but the usage has been discouraged for many years already; after the end of 2013, EC2-Classic has not been available for any new AWS account and region launched, with all EC2 instances VPC-only.

The change does not impact only EC2 instances; among other services affected are the Classic Load Balancers, old RDS database instances, elastic IP addresses, old Redshift clusters and Elastic Beanstalk environments that have not been running in a VPC.

As part of the announcement, Jeff Barr, vice president & chief evangelist at AWS, reassures the existing users:

EC2-Classic has served us well, but we’re going to give it a gold watch and a well-deserved sendoff! (...) We are already notifying the remaining EC2-Classic customers via their account teams, and will soon start to issue notices in the Personal Health Dashboard (...) We don’t plan to disrupt any workloads and will do our best to help you to meet these dates.

Greg Esposito, technology consultant, questions how reserved instances are going to be managed:

How will reserved non convertible instances be handled? If there's no way to transfer to the VPC that's a problem. I think a cutoff date to align with Amazon Linux 1 EOL (June 2023) would work, as that has been a known target for years (for those who bought 3y reservations in 2020)!

Mike Tougeron, lead cloud engineer at Adobe, thinks instead that the retirement is overdue:

It's about darn time that AWS ec2-classic went away for good. I wonder if this deadline will get pushed out though.

The announcement of the EC2-classic retirement triggered many comments from the AWS community with some users on Reddit focusing on the rare deprecation on AWS, an approach that is significantly different from Google Cloud. Glenn Gillen, director of Product at HashiCorp, tweets:

First signs of the apocalypse: AWS is deprecating something.

To help existing customers with the migration, AWS provides a EC2 Classic Resource Finder script to find all of the EC2-Classic resources in an account and a runbook to migrate instances to a VPC. Even if the old instance types from EC2-Classic are also available in VPC, AWS recommends to update instance types such as t1, m1 or m3 ones to newest types, as part of the migration plan.

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