Amazon Web Services (AWS) has lowered prices again, this time dropping the fee for its archival Glacier storage below a cent per gigabyte per month to $0.007 per gig per month.
The price cut is only applicable in some of AWS' regions, for now, but at that price, and with Glacier's deliberately slow restore times, who cares about a little latency if those regions aren't the closest to you?
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The cloudy concern has also introduced a new "S3 Standard – Infrequent Access (Standard – IA)" product that offers a 99 per cent availability service level. That's in contrast to S3 Standard storage's SLA that sees Amazon hand out service credits if availability drops below 99.9 per cent. AWS isn;t mentioning long retrieval times, so this looks like a just-about-realtime retrieval rather than Glacier's hurry-up-and-wait retrieval plan.
The new Standard-IA tier starts at $0.0125/gig/month, but you need to use it for at least 30 days. There's also a $0.01/gig retrieval charge.
AWS' lifecycle management tools are hip to the new tier, so you can create an object in S3 Standard, set a policy to shunt it down into the IA tier and then to Glacier once retrieval times aren't an issue.
Amazon now has three storage tiers, each fit for different jobs. S3 Standard can handle bulk storage and some transactional workloads, the kind of thing low-end arrays have for breakfast. Standard-IA can do cold storage, like a scale-out NAS or disk backup appliance. Glacier competes with tape libraries or, again, disk backup. AWS throws in the tiering tools and handles racking, stacking, backing up, physical security and other unctuous physical chores.
Good luck, array vendors. And their partners: if AWS is selling for seven tenths of a cent, it'll be interesting to see what its margins are like, never mind yours. ®