Amazon Elastic File System (Amazon EFS) provides a simple, serverless, set-and-forget elastic file system for shared data across Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) instances or with container and serverless services such as Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS), Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS), AWS Fargate, and AWS Lambda. Until now, customers could choose Amazon EFS Standard storage classes which redundantly store data across multiple geographically separated Availability Zones (AZs) to offer the highest levels of availability and durability.

Today, I am happy to announce Amazon EFS One Zone storage classes, reducing storage costs by 47% compared to Amazon EFS Standard storage classes. As an example, in the US East (N. Virginia) Region, this allows customers to achieve an effective storage price of $0.043/GB-month, assuming you are using lifecycle management and 80% of your data is infrequently accessed. Amazon EFS is designed for eleven 9’s of durability, and EFS One Zone Storage classes offer a three 9’s availability SLA while maintaining the same capabilities as Standard storage classes such as elasticity, simplicity, scalability, and lifecycle management.

We are launching two new single AZ storage classes, Amazon EFS One Zone – $0.16/GB-month in the case of the US East (N. Virginia) Region, and Amazon EFS One Zone-Infrequent Access (One Zone-IA) – $0.0133 GB-month in the case of the US East (N. Virginia) Region. All file systems using One Zone storage classes are configured with an automatic backup policy using AWS Backup to provide an extra level of data protection, and file systems created using the EFS console have a default lifecycle management policy to automatically and transparently move less frequently used files to the Amazon EFS One Zone-IA storage class. By using lifecycle management, you reduce the cost of your storage for infrequently accessed data by up to 92%.

One Zone storage classes are ideal for workloads such as development, build, and staging environments, and applications such as analytics and simulation and media transcoding which don’t require the highest levels of availability and durability of Amazon EFS Standard storage classes. They are also ideal for storing replicas, secondary copies of on-premises data, data that can be easily recreated, and for applications with built-in replication and high-availability features that do not need to rely on the multi-AZ resilience of Amazon EFS Standard storage classes.

Getting Started With One Zone Storage Classes
To get started with the Amazon EFS One Zone storage classes, create a new file system using the Amazon EFS Console, AWS Command Line Interface (CLI), or AWS SDKs.

From the Amazon EFS console, click on Create file system, select One Zone for your chosen Availability and Durability option, and pick an AZ to create a file system with recommended settings, including automatic backup and a default lifecycle management policy, in just seconds.

Amazon EFS One Zone storage classes provide the same features, API and console experience as Amazon EFS Standard storage classes, allowing you to create and access shared file storage for instances, containers and serverless or on-premises servers via AWS Direct Connect or AWS VPN.

You can use Amazon EFS file systems with Amazon ECS to share file system data across your fleet of container instances so your tasks have access to the same persistent storage, no matter the instance on which they land. To use Amazon EFS with Amazon EKS, use the Amazon EFS Container Storage Interface (CSI) driver, which supports Amazon EFS access points to share a file system between multiple pods in an Amazon EKS or self-managed Kubernetes cluster. The Amazon EFS CSI driver is installed in the Fargate stack and support for Amazon EFS is provided out of the box.

Amazon EFS works with AWS Lambda to allow you to share data across function invocations, read large reference data files, and write function output to a persistent and shared store. AWS Lambda securely connects the function instances to the Amazon EFS mount targets in the same Availability Zone and subnet.

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind:

Durability and Availability: Since EFS One Zone storage classes store data in a single AZ, data stored in these storage classes may be lost in the event of a disaster or other fault that affects all copies of the data within the Availability Zone, or in the event of Availability Zone destruction. For customers requiring the highest levels of durability and availability, we recommend Amazon EFS Standard storage classes, which store data across multiple AZs.

Backup: As I said, file systems using Amazon EFS One Zone storage classes are automatically backed up using AWS Backup unless you change the default backup setting when creating a file system. Backup data is replicated to three AZs within a region, and can be restored to any AZ or copied to a different region.

Available Now
Amazon EFS One Zone storage classes are immediately available in US East (N. Virginia), US East (Ohio), US West (N. California), US West (Oregon), South America (São Paulo), Europe (Ireland), Europe (Frankfurt), Europe (Milan), Europe (Stockholm), Asia Pacific (Singapore), Asia Pacific (Sydney), Asia Pacific (Tokyo), Asia Pacific (Seoul), Asia Pacific (Mumbai), Asia Pacific (Hong Kong), Africa (Cape Town), Middle East (Bahrain), and all AWS GovCloud (US) Regions, with more regions coming soon. To learn more, take a look at the documentation. Please send feedback to the AWS forum for Amazon EFS or through your usual AWS support contacts.

Learn more about Amazon EFS file systems and get started today.

— Channy

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