AWS EC2 Instance Store vs EBS

The EC2 instance has data in it, and that data should be stored somewhere in the AWS account.

Instance store and Elastic Block Storage (EBS) are both storage types attached to the EC2 instances that contain all the data associated with the EC2 instance. The functionality of both of them is to store and back up the data of the associated instances, but they work differently.

Let’s discuss what exactly the EBS and Instance store is and then move on to their differences.

What is an Instance store?

The instance store is the storage type that acts as the physical hard drive for the EC2 instance, and that provides temporary block-level storage to the EC2 instance and stores data for a shorter period of time. This means that it is ideal for applications that require short-term storage, but it is not suitable for applications that require the instance’s data to remain stored for a longer period.

What is EBS?

Elastic Block Store is the storage type of the EC2 instance that is used for storing long-term data. EBS is the storage type that is assigned to the instances as the root volume of the instances by default when they are created. It is also called Ephemeral storage and is ideal for the storage types like cache and buffers.

Differences Between EBS and Instance Store

Explained below are the core differences between the EBS and Instance type:

EBS Instance Store
EBS is attached to the EC2 instance for long-term data storage. An instance store is used to store short-term data temporarily.
While using EBS as the storage type, the instances can be stopped and restarted without any data loss. There is no option through which the user can stop and then restart the instance, the option that AWS provides while using the instance store is only to terminate the instance.
EBS volumes can be restored through the snapshots of the instances. Instance Store is associated with the S3 templates.
EBS volumes can be attached, detached, and reattached to the EC2 instance. The instance store volume cannot be detached or reattached.

These were some brief differences between the Elastic Block Store storage and the Instance Store.


The instance store and EBS are both the storage types of the EC2 instances, but the functionalities of both of them are different. The instance store storage type is useful for applications where the data needs to be stored temporarily. But the EBS volume storage type is preferred for applications where the data needs to be stored permanently or for long-term use.

About the author

Hadia Atiq

A Software Engineer and Technical Writer passionate about learning and spreading knowledge of the latest technology. I utilize my writing skills to help readers understand the importance and usage of modern technology.