Purchase ECS instances

Last Updated: Sep 01, 2017

This document describes the pricing, billing methods, and payment methods of an ECS instance.

Pricing

The price of an ECS instance varies by the following factors:

  • Instance type, including the memory capacity and the number of CPU cores.
  • Region: The price for the same instance type varies in different regions.
  • Image: Windows images are more expensive than Linux or UNIX images for the same instance type in the same region because Microsoft charges an additional license fee for Windows images.

For pricing details, refer to Pricing of ECS.

Billing methods

Currently, ECS instances support two billing methods:

  • Subscription: A type of prepayment whereby instances can be used only after payment is made. Instance usage is billed on a monthly basis, and the billing unit is US$/month. Subscription is applicable to fixed 24/7 services, such as Web service.

  • Pay-As-You-Go: A type of post payment whereby payment is made after instance usage. Instance usage is billed on an hourly basis, and the billing unit is US$/minute. The minimum charge for the lifecycle of an ECS instance (from creation to release) is 0.01 US$. Pay-As-You-Go is applicable to scenarios with sudden traffic spikes, such as temporary scaling, interim testing, and scientific computing.

The functions and payment methods of an ECS instance vary depending on billing methods.

Functions

The functions of an ECS instance vary depending on the billing method. The following table lists the differences between the Subscription and Pay-As-You-Go billing methods.

Function Subscription Pay-As-You-Go
Renew Supported. You can manually renew or activate auto-renewal for your ECS instance. Not supported.
Release instances at any time Not supported. The instance will be automatically released if it is not renewed timely after expiration. Supported. If you do not need an instance any longer, release it as soon as possible. Otherwise, the instance is still billed even after it is stopped until it is out of service and automatically released because of overdue payment.
Upgrade instance specification Supported. For details, refer to Upgrade configurations in the User Guide. Not supported.
Upgrade bandwidth Supported. For details, refer to Upgrade configurations in the User Guide. Not supported. If your Pay-As-You-Go ECS instance is bound to an EIP address, you can use the Change Configuration function to upgrade or downgrade the bandwidth configuration on the EIP address.
Change billing method Not supported. Supported. You can switch from Pay-As-You-Go to Subscription. For details, refer to Switch from Pay-As-You-Go to subscription in the User Guide.
ICP Filing for instances in regions inside mainland China Supported. Not supported.
Use API to create instances Not supported. Supported.

You can also switch your instance from Pay-As-You-Go to subscription.

Payment methods

The payment methods of an ECS instance varies depending on different billing methods.

Currently, you can use credit cards, PayPal account, or coupons to pay for instances. Before you purchase an ECS instance, you need to add a credit card or PayPal account to your account.

For details about the adding procedure, refer to Configure your account in the Account Management documentation.

Purchase of ECS instances in regions inside mainland China requires real-name registration. For details about real-name registration, refer to Real-name Registration for purchase of China mainland ECS in the Account Management documentation.

  • The Subscription billing method requires prepayment. Payment by credit card, PayPal account, or coupons is supported. For details about the billing rules, refer to Subscription rules.

    To view the billing record for each ECS instance of the Subscription billing method, log on to the ECS Console and go to Billing Management > Bills Details > Prepaid Billing.

  • The Pay-As-You-Go billing method allows you to use instances first and pay later. Payment by credit card or coupons is supported. For details about the billing rules, refer to Pay-As-You-Go rules.

    To view the billing record for each ECS instance of the Pay-As-You-Go billing method, log on to the ECS Console and go to Billing Management > Bills Details > Postpaid Billing.

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