RDS vs EC2 Instance

Most important decision when migrating databases to AWS is to decide on running the Database in RDS (DBasS) or in an EC2 Instance (IaaS). In this article, we will see the factors that influence the decision.

About RDS:

Amazon RDS helps you to set up, operate and scale your databases in a few clicks. RDS frees you from a lot of time consuming tasks like provisioning disks, upgrades, patching and backup of databases. Amazon RDS is available for MySQL, PostgreSQL, MariaDB, ORACLE, SQL Server and Amazons Aurora databases.

About EC2 Instance:

User can spin an EC2 instance as virtual machine instantly. User can deploy his database and have full control of his database.

One of the most widely used databases is MySQL, which we will be taking it as reference for our discussion.

RDS vs EC2: Deployment and Administration

Amazon RDS is very simple to deploy with few clicks. No more general DB administration as patching, backups are taken care of by Amazon. Key limitations are no Shell access and no user with “SUPER” privileges. MySQL variables are handled through RDS parameter groups.

User can spin an EC2 instance as virtual machine instantly. User can deploy his/her database and have full control of the database.

RDS vs EC2: High Availability

Amazon RDS can be deployed in Multi-AZ configuration without much effort. In Multi-AZ deployments, automatic sync standby replica is created in a different Availability Zone. Besides RDS provides automatic failover during both planned and unplanned outages. The high-availability feature is not a scaling solution for read-only scenarios; you cannot use a standby replica to serve read traffic. To service read-only traffic, you should use a Read Replica.

In Amazon EC2 deployment you will have to configure the replication. By default, MySQL provides asynchronous replication. For synchronous replication, the NDB Cluster can be used. This secondary instance could be used for Read operations and help in scaling and load balancing

RDS vs EC2: Cost

Let’s take an example of m5.xlarge reserved instance (full upfront payment) for calculation.

Type Configuration Storage Price Per Hour Cost Per month
EC2 2 Instances 1 TB Per Instance $0.114 $301
RDS Multi-AZ 1 TB $0.438 $502

Irrespective of where you are deploying the database, Nimesa can protect your instance (EC2 & RDS) as well as MySQL databases. Providing the ability to restore and clone the databases instantly.

In conclusion, RDS is useful for an organization who wants to keep it simple, no management overhead and automated backups. EC2 is for the organization who needs control of its database environment and to be cost-effective.

Irrespective of where you are deploying the database Nimesa can protect your MySQL databases. Provide the ability to Restore and clone the databases instantly. To know more of how to protect your environment using Nimesa refer to my previous blog

About Nimesa

Nimesa is an enterprise-class Application Aware data protection, cost management & copy data management solution for applications running on AWS. It uses native AWS capabilities like EBS snapshots capabilities to automatically protect the environment. Nimesa provides simple policy based lifecycle management of snapshots and clones of EC2 instances.

Try Nimesa for free

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