Amazon Simple Storage Service: Storage Classes

What is Amazon Simple Storage Service: Storage Classes?  

There are four kinds of Storage classes in AWS S3.


  • Standard: - This default storage class for objects if it is not specified by a user and best suitable for frequently access and performance sensitive objects. This is extremely durable (99.99999999999%) and also highly available (99.99%). 
  • Standard-IA: Although this storage class also has same durability and availability as Standard, but most suitable for objects which are not required frequent access, a while may need quick access for on demand kinds of the update. this is a cheaper option than Standard and can be used to same $ by classifying objects into this class which is not required to access frequently but must be quickly accessible when needed. 
  • Glacier: This Class is classified as "Cold Storage", most cheaper storage option, best suitable for archived data may require for compliance perspective and must have 3 to 5 hours in hand to access objects/files to retrieve from Glacier. this is cheapest storage option and may help to bring the cost down tremendously if we identify objects/files that can be archived and move to Glacier. Limitation of Glacier is that user cannot specify the storage class as Glacier when object uploaded to S3, this must be configured through Object life cycle process only. Example, Created as Standard, after 30 days move to Standard-IA then after 1 year moves to Glacier and by the compliance term of 5 -6 years, delete permanently. 
    • Glacier data is stored in archives, up to 40TB in size
    • Vaults are container for archives
    • 1000 Vaults per account is the limit
    • A user can specify the Vault policy to lock down from future edit and for write once read many. once locked, Vault policy is no longer be changed
  • Reduced Redundancy Storage: Again other storage option to bring storage cost down for the objects whose are non-critical and can be reproduced if it lost. This storage class is designed with reduced redundancy to provide a cost-effective, highly available solution for distributing or sharing content that is durably stored elsewhere, or for storing thumbnails, transcoded media, or other processed data that can be easily reproduced. 
  •  Durability and availability offered by each of the storage classes
    • STANDARD - 99.999999999% Durability and 99.99% Availability
    • STANDARD_IA- 99.999999999% Durability and 99.9% Availability
      • Retrieval fee is applicable for STANDARD_IA objects
    • GLACIER - 99.999999999% Durability and 99.99% Availability
      • This Storage class object is not real time accessible, must have to restore first (3-5 hours restoration time). Once restored then availability will be 99.99%
  • The important aspect is, need to understand all use case of Storage requirement from stakeholders and design to meet in exact. Better to avoid the assumption during design storage solution and clearly define the object lifecycle in order to optimize to storage cost.

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