Bowing to IT demands, cloud providers move to reserved instances

Offerings that promise reserved portions of clouds could get enterprises off the fence around the use of public clouds

With the rising interest in private cloud computing, many public cloud providers are moving to service offerings that promise reserved portions of clouds they are calling reserved instances or sometime virtual private clouds. This is a step in the right direction, considering that many enterprises and government agencies are pushing back on public clouds. This is more around control issues than any legitimate technical arguments.

The latest proof point around reserved instances is the new Reserved Database Instances which is now a part of the Amazon Web Services offering. As the IDG News Service reported: "With Reserved Database Instances, users can make a one-time, up-front payment to reserve a database instance in a specific region for either one or three years, according to In return, they get a discount off the ongoing hourly usage rate. A Reserved Database Instance costs from $227.50 for one year and $350 for three years plus $0.046 per hour. That compares to the standard hourly rate that starts at $0.11, according to's price list. If the database instance is used for the entire term, the discount can amount to up to 46 percent, said."

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The price is actually pretty high considering that commodity servers and open source stacks are pretty cheap these days. However, the core costs of keeping these systems around is installation and maintenance related, and those costs are avoided when using the cloud.

Functionally,'s Reserved Database Instances and On-Demand DB Instances are equivalent. What's more, you can add as many as 20 reserved instances and configure those instances as required to support the type of database processing you may need. The only limitation is that you can't go to a data center and actually see the blinking lights.

The ability to use the word "reserve" in the world of cloud computing is much less scary to IT, considering that we're seeing a clear pattern that those looking at cloud computing are much less likely to jump into sharing public cloud services with both feet, at least today.

I suspect that this is going to be a theme among the cloud computing providers over the next year are so: Creating offering that reflect more ownership than sharing, as that may be the only way to get the enterprises that are on the fence to bite on the public clouds.

This article, "Bowing to IT demands, cloud providers move to reserved instances," originally appeared at Read more of David Linthicum's Cloud Computing blog and follow the latest developments in cloud computing at


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