Elastic Computing Service

Elastic, secure and virtual cloud servers to cater all your cloud hosting needs


Similar to the way you consume and pay for electricity, gas, water and traditional utilities, Elastic Compute Service (ECS) offers you full control to consume compute resources from the cloud on a pay-as-you-go basis. As a user you can simply rent compute resources from Alibaba Cloud in the form of virtual machines known as instances.

Alibaba Cloud's Elastic Compute Service (ECS) comes with fast memory and the latest Intel CPUs to help you achieve faster results with low latencies across global data centers to power your cloud applications. All Alibaba Cloud ECS instances integrate Anti-DDoS protection to safeguard your data and applications from DDoS and Trojan attacks, as well as monitor real-time visibility of security breaches and block common attack patterns.

With Alibaba Cloud’s ECS you can deploy instances with a few clicks via a clean and easy-to-use console, and scale capacity up or down based on your business or web application’s real-time demands. You therefore only pay for the resources you use, and avoid the need to provision expensive IT infrastructure, hire network teams and purchase expensive software.

Product Details

Alibaba Cloud Elastic Compute Service (ECS) is a core service that enables you to launch new instances immediately to meet with real-time demand, along with a variety of basic components such as operating systems, memory, CPU, storage, IPs and images.
The clean and simple Alibaba Cloud user console allows you to load applications with different operating systems and manage network access rights and permissions. Within the user console you can also access the latest storage features, including auto snapshots, which is perfect for testing new tasks or operating systems as it allows you to make a quick copy and restore later.



  • Can boot or release up to 100 ECS cloud servers quickly.
  • Scales capacity automatically depending on real-time requirements to improve overall performance.
  • Instantly upgrades network bandwidth.

Fully Automated Platform

  • One-click deployment for all resources.
  • The easy-to-use console allows convenient access, management and control of your resources anytime, anywhere.
  • Extends automatic data migration.


  • Provides a highly reliable environment with service availability of 99.95%.
  • Backup and restore data when needed.
  • Generates system performance alerts regularly.


  • Solid DDoS defense system and Network Security Group (NSG) protection.
  • Multi-user isolation gives additional layers of security.
  • Advanced defense against password cracking.

High Quality Network

  • Provides 12000 Random IOPS & 300 MB/s ephemeral SSD volume.
  • Provides access to Multi-line BGP backbone network.
  • Cost-effective and highly efficient.




ECS offers a variety of configurable CPU, memory, data disk and bandwidth variations allowing you to tailor each Instance to your specific needs. Bandwidth can be upgraded instantly so you experience zero lag time. CPU and memory upgrades take less than 5 minutes to upgrade. Offers 99.95% service availability and ensures stable business operations

I/O-Optimized instances

The underlying software and hardware of I/O-optimized instances are augmented to power SSD CloudDisks ensuring a much higher IOPS. For non-I/O-optimized instances, mounted SSD CloudDisks can process up to 1,000 IOPS.

Global Data Centers
  • Alibaba Cloud has data centers in eight regions across the world, including China, USA, Hong Kong and Singapore.
  • Alibaba Cloud’s China data centers offer multi-line BGP backbone network lines, covering all of China’s provinces and municipalities. This ensures stable and high speed network access.
  • The Hong Kong and Singapore regions provide effective network access to the Hong Kong, Asia-Pacific, Southeast Asia, Japan and South Korea regions.
  • The Alibaba Cloud United States region is located in Silicon Valley. With BGP lines, this region provides coverage across the U.S, South America and Europe through multiple backbone operator networks.


Supports Three Types of Data Storage Disks

Users can attach a data block storage for their ECS instances to achieve sustainable and reliable storage pattern of data blocks. Data blocks mounted to ECS instances can be formatted to create file systems on them for persistent data storage. Considering various demands of I/O performances under different scenarios, we offer three types of data block storage services that can be used both in combination or separately:

Disk Category Basic Cloud Disk SSD Cloud Disk Ultra Cloud Disk
Max size of single disk 2TB 32.768TB 32.768TB
Max IOPS of single disk 300+ IOPS 20,000 IOPS 3,000 IOPS
Max throughput of single disk 20-40 MBps 256 MBps 80 MBps
Access latency 5.0-10.0 ms 0.5-2.0 ms 1.0-3.0 ms
Data reliability With the strength of the Alibaba Cloud distributed storage technology, which uses a triplicate storage system, it ensures data integrity of 99.9999999%.
Typical scenarios Data is not frequently accessed or with low I/O loads. I/O intensive applications.
Medium sized or large relational databases.
NoSQL databases.
Small and medium sized databases.
Development and testing.
Cloud Server logging.

Note: You can purchase data disks separately from the console after an ECS instance has been initialized and attached to it. Ultra Cloud Disk is available in the Singapore region only.

Automatic/Custom Backups

Snapshots are used to backup and recover your ECS CloudDisks.

Automatic snapshot policies can be customized for ECS system disks or data through the console. Alternatively, snapshots can be manually created through the console or OpenAPI. Snapshot rollback enables quick data recovery.


Easy Management

With complete control over your ECS instances, you can remotely solve system problems and perform operations through connected terminals, similar to managing on-premise local servers.

This allows for restarting your servers, resetting login passwords and isolating networks through the console, API and command lines.


IP addresses

Public IP addresses: Public IP addresses provide the connection between Instances and the Internet, or between Instances and Alibaba Cloud services.

Private IP addresses: Private IP addresses provide the connection between different ECS instances over the Intranet, or between ECS instances and other cloud services such as Server Load Balancers, Object Storage Service (OSS), and Relational Database Service (RDS). Communication traffic through private IP addresses between instances in the same region is free of charge.

Note: IP addresses of different products in different regions are not interconnected over the Intranet.

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) and Classic Network

Alibaba Cloud offers a Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) or a Classic Network for you to choose from depending on your network plan

Classic Network: The IP addresses of Classic Networks are uniformly distributed, featuring easy configurations. In Classic Networks, users are allowed to manage network accesses of Alibaba Cloud ECS with the help of security groups to achieve isolation.

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC): Isolated network environment allows you to have full control of your own virtual networks, including resource access management through security groups, and customization of IP address ranges, network segments, route tables and gateways. You can also establish a customized network infrastructure comprising of a VPC and legacy data center/s. These are connected by a dedicated line/VPN to achieve smooth migration of applications to the cloud.


Exceptional Security & Protection

Anti-DDoS: Provides protection against up to 5GB traffic of DDoS attacks, SYN flood, UDP flood, ICMP flood, ACK flood and other common DDoS attacks.

Server Security: Provides protection against brute force attacks, password cracking, Trojans and other forms of security threats. ECS also offers remote login reminders, and repairs high-risk vulnerabilities.

Advanced Security: For advanced network and server security requirements, we provide specialized security services such as Anti-DDoS and Cloud Monitor.

Advanced Monitoring Functionalities

Site Monitoring: Offers statistics, monitoring and alarm options to track availability and response time of HTTP, Ping, DNS, TCP, UDP, SMTP, POP and FTP services.

CloudsService Monitoring: Provides advanced monitoring and alarm options to efficiently monitor all your resources concurrently. Alarm and Contact Management: Supports multiple alarm modes including SMS messages, emails and interface callbacks.

Alarm and contact management: Supports multiple alarm modes including SMS messages, emails and interface callbacks. It also provides uniform and bulk messaging services on alarm rules and alarm contacts.


Faster Deployment with Images
Image is the operating environment template for ECS instances which generally contain the operating system and preloaded software. ECS instances can be replaced by system disks of ECS instances with images for faster deployment.

Images are accessible by three ways:
  • Public Images: Provides multiple released versions for Windows and Linux.
  • Cloud Marketplace: Offers a variety of server operating systems, tools and software images provided by third-party Independent Software Venders ISVs.
  • Image Sharing: Offers user defined images shared by owners with other users through the ECS console or ECS API which can be used further for creating cloud servers or ECS instances and replacing system disks.

Processing Power


Built for Success

Built using the Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600 v3 processor family, Alibaba Cloud ECS delivers record-breaking performance that gives you the power and capacity to fuel your best business ideas and handle data and transaction intensive applications.


Auto Scaling automatically adjusts computing resources based on your business cycle

Auto Scaling is a service to automatically adjust computing resources based on your volume of user requests. When demand for computing resources increase, Auto Scaling automatically adds ECS instances to serve additional user requests, or alternatively removes instances in the case of decreased user requests.

This service is available free of cost. You will be only charged for the standard cost of adding additional ECS resources.

Product Details

Auto Scaling is an Alibaba Cloud service that integrates with your business cycle to automatically adjust computing resource based on your volume of user requests. Auto Scaling also integrates with Server Load Balancer and Cloud Monitor to ensure uninterrupted service and a streamlined maintenance.

Elastic Scale-Out: During peak periods, Auto Scaling automatically adds additional computing resource to the pool.

Elastic Scale-In: When user requests decrease, auto-scaling automatically releases ECS resources to cut down your costs.

Elastic Self-Health: When an unhealthy instance has been detected, the auto-scaling service automatically replaces the instance with a new one to ensure uninterrupted service.



  • Intelligent scheduling to support various scenarios.
  • Automatically adjusts computing resources according to various scaling policies.
  • Supports manual scale-in and scale-out, which offer you flexibility to control resources manually.


  • Automatic surveyance of health status.
  • Automatically create or release ECS resources after scaling policy is triggered.
  • Automatically configures load balancer and RDS whitelist.

Scale Mode

Scheduled Mode

Configure scheduled tasks, and add or remove ECS instances with a fixed time window. Can be combined with dynamic mode.

Dynamic Mode

Based on CloudMonitor metrics (ie. CPU and memory ratio), dynamically add or remove ECS instance/s.

Fixed Mode

The “minimal size” setting allows you to employ the minimal ECS instances required to support business-as-usual levels of activity.

Auto-config SLB and RDS

When adding or removing ECS instances, the service automatically attaches or detaches instances to the Server Load Balancer, and adds these servers to the white list of RDS instances.


Auto Scaling is subject to the following constraints:

  • Applications that deploy Auto Scaling ECS instances must be stateless and horizontally scalable. ECS instances created by Auto Scaling cannot be used to save application status (ie. session status) or related data (ie. databases and logs). This is because Auto Scaling automatically releases ECS instances. Status information can be saved to an independent state server, database (ie. RDS), shared cache (ie OCS), or centralized log storage (ie. SLS).
  • Each user can only create a limited number of scaling groups, scaling configurations, scaling rules, scaling ECS instances, and scheduled tasks.
  • Note: Auto Scaling uses its best effort to ensure you are notified of the complete resources of normal scaling. However, due to insufficient ECS instance inventory, long startup time, and other issues, the full resources of scaling may not be displayed. Thank you for your understanding.


Auto Scaling

According to customer business needs, automatically increase or decrease ECS instances.

Support SLB Configuration

When adding or releasing ECS instances, the service automatically attaches or detaches the instances to the Sever Load Balancer.

Support RDS White List

When adding ECS instances, the service automatically adds instance IPs to the white list of RDS instances. Likewise, when releasing ECS instances the service automatically delists instance IPs from the white list.

Server Load Balancer

Respond to sudden traffic spikes and minimize response time with Server Load Balancer


Using the Alibaba Cloud Server Load Balancer you can manage sudden spikes in traffic, minimize response times and ensure 99.99% availability of your website or web application. The Alibaba Cloud Server Load Balancer provides these benefits by monitoring the health of servers and ensuring high availability by automatically distributing application requests to servers with optimal performance in different availability zones.

Server Load Balancer is available on a Pay-As-You-Go model and is up to 60% more cost effective compared to other traditional models of load balancing.


The world’s largest annual traffic spike

Alibaba Cloud takes great pride in the development of processing capacity for our Server Load Balancer. Given the growing number of people in China accessing the Internet on smartphones, Alibaba Cloud’s Server Load Balancer has been built to cope with high growth in user traffic. The ultimate test of Alibaba Cloud’s ability to handle surge traffic comes each year in November. Alibaba’s annual Global Shopping Festival is the world’s largest online sales festival day in terms of sales.

Each year Alibaba Cloud breaks new records in processing online payments and 2015 was no exception. Alibaba Cloud was able to support the processing up to 85,900 payments per second and 140,000 orders per second. This is 50% more payments per second than the maximum capacity recorded by the world’s largest payment card company VISA, and 100% more than that set by MasterCard. Leveraging Server Load Balancer, Alibaba Cloud was able to successfully switch between data centers and automatically transfer transactions to the most available servers. This included transaction requests that were transferred to servers located over 1,000 kilometres away. Alibaba Cloud’s Server Load Balancer was able to provide uninterrupted service during the peak sales event without missing a single transaction.

Product Details

Server Load Balancer (SLB) is a ready-to-use service that seamlessly integrates with Elastic Scaling Service (ECS) to manage varying traffic levels without manual intervention. SLB is configured above ECS instances to receive incoming traffic first. The SLB then distributes incoming traffic across multiple ECS instances, detects unhealthy or unsafe instances and routes traffic to healthy and safe instances only. This enables you to build highly scalable and robust applications. Importantly, the SLB ensures high availability of your applications by eliminating any single-point-of-failure, and protects from SYN flood and DDoS attacks.

SLB can also be integrated with a Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). You can create an internal cloud load balancer to route traffic using private IP addresses within your VPC. To learn more about VPC click here



  • Guarantees up to 99.9% availability.
  • Distributes traffic automatically across instances in different availability zones.
  • Quickly detects unhealthy instances and routes traffic to only healthy instances.


  • Automatically scales up and down depending on the load.
  • Seamlessly integrates with Elastic Scaling Service to manage varying traffic levels without manual intervention.


  • Protects from SYN flood and DDoS attacks.
  • Creates an internal cloud load balancer to route traffic using private IP addresses within your VPC (Virtual Private Cloud). To learn more about VPC, click here
  • Quickly creates a secure architecture using Intranet (private) and Internet (public) facing load balancers.


  • Offers Pay-As-You-Go model.
  • Up to 60% cost effective compared to other traditional models of load balancing.



  • Distributes incoming traffic to healthy ECS instances within and across availability zones.
  • Supports cluster deployment, multi-zone deployment and guarantees multilayer disaster tolerance.
  • Enables cluster deployment with session synchronization between machines to support hot upgradations, and makes machine faults and cluster maintenance transparent to users.
  • Facilitates local disaster recovery by using multi-zone deployment model for some regions.
  • Supports global load balancing and cross-region disaster recovery when used in combination with DNS.

Health Checks

  • Supports health checks for ECS instances and allows user to specify the frequency. If an ECS instance does not qualify the health check, traffic will not be forwarded to that instance, thereby ensuring application availability.
  • Ensures normal operations of ECS instances running at the backend with regular health checks.


  • Supports multiple traffic scheduling algorithms to evenly distribute traffic.
  • Server Load Balancer supports Weighted Round Robin (WRR) and least connections scheduling algorithms. You can choose the traffic distribution algorithm that best suits your needs.
  • Increases server load balancing capabilities and distributes traffic evenly by configuring ECS instance weights.
  • Easily scalable ECS instance when using a Server Load Balancer with (Elastic Scaling Service).

Load Balancing through Layer 4 or Layer 7

  • Supports session persistence for Layer 4 and Layer 7.
  • Layer 4 Server Load Balancer uses IP addresses to achieve session persistence, while Layer 7 SLB uses cookies.
  • Forwards access requests from a single user within a certain period to the same ECS instance to ensure session continuity.

Flexible Billing

  • Offers flexible billing options such as Monthly/Yearly Subscription or Pay-As-You-Go.


  • Allows you to select public or private network Server Load Balancer under a Classic Network or VPC network based on your business needs.
  • Provides central certificate management system for HTTPS protocol.
  • You can define particular IPs to access the application through different ports in the security groups of Server Load Balancer.

Easy-to-use Console

  • The user-friendly console provides various management methods that allows you to create, modify and manage your Server Load Balancers.

Using the simple Management Console you can conveniently create, configure, or perform operations on your SLBs.
Use APIs, SDKs, and CLIs for SLBs for subsequent development to create, configure, and manage SLBs.

Container Service

A high-performance container manage service that provides containerized application lifecycle management.


Alibaba Cloud Container Service is a high-performance and scalable container management service which enables you to easily run distributed containerized applications on a managed cluster of Alibaba Cloud ECS instances. Being a fully-managed service, it helps you to focus on your applications rather than managing container infrastructure. In addition, Alibaba Cloud Container Service can be integrated with Server Load Balancer, VPC, and other cloud services, allowing you to manage container provisioning from the console or through simple APIs.

Product Details

You can launch as many containers as needed based on your business requirements. It makes your IT infrastructure simpler by giving you a chance to focus on designing, building, and running containerized applications. It also allows you to view detailed container cluster information so that you can create or delete Docker containers as needed.

In addition, Alibaba Cloud Container Service can be integrated with Server Load Balancer, VPC, and other cloud services, allowing you to manage container applications from the console or Docker APIs. It can efficiently manage long-running Docker applications and services. It maintains application availability by enabling you to scale your containers up or down as per your application's capacity requirements. It allows you to distribute traffic across your containers using Server Load Balancer. It also offers orchestration, monitoring and self-healing of containerized applications.


Effortless Cluster Management

  • Lets you create or delete a cluster in a region based on your needs
  • Allows you to select either classic network or specific VPC environment as per your business requirements

Multiple Server Hosting Modes

  • Allows you to dynamically scale ECS instances in a specified cluster
  • Lets you register an existing ECS instance to a specified cluster

One-stop Container Lifecycle Management

  • Network: Intercommunication between containers across different hosts with domain names defined by container name or hostname
  • Storage: Supports volume management
  • Self-Healing: In case a container goes down, the cluster launches a new one in its place
  • Monitoring: Facilitates monitoring of Docker containers and VMs
  • Scheduling: Supports cross-zone scheduling of highly available and automatic rescheduling from failure nodes
  • Routing: Supports forwarding of Layer 4 and Layer 7 requests and their binding to backend containers
  • Sub-account: Provides authorization management for the cluster

Compatible with Standard Docker APIs

  • Compatible with standard Docker Swarm and Docker Compose
  • Supports seamless migration of on-premises container applications to Alibaba Cloud


  • Compatible with standard Docker Swarm and Docker Compose
  • Supports seamless migration of on-premises container applications to Alibaba Cloud

Flexible Scheduling Policies

  • Simplifies application delivery from development to production
  • Supports service affinity and automatic scaling of containers
  • Supports high availability and auto-recovery across zones
  • Offers open APIs for cluster and application management which can be easily integrated with CI/CD systems present on either on-premises or off-premises
  • Supports multiple application delivery models including rolling update, blue-green, etc., to ensure that the application remains up-to-date without any risks