Outbound data transfer refers to the amount of data transferred from Alibaba Cloud to data centers. Starting July 1, 2021, you must enable billing for outbound data transfer before you can create a connection over an Express Connect circuit.

Adjustment of billable items

After you enable billing for outbound data transfer, the following changes are applied to your Express Connect service:

  • You are no longer charged an initial installation fee for your Express Connect circuit, which is USD 1,500. This reduces the costs of connecting data centers to Alibaba Cloud.
  • You can create more virtual border routers (VBRs) free of charge to meet the requirements of complex networking.
  • Data transfer from your data center to Alibaba Cloud is no longer billed. You are charged only for data transfer from Alibaba Cloud to your data center. This reduces the cost of data transfer when you use an Express Connect circuit to connect to Alibaba Cloud.

Data transfer plans

If you enable billing for outbound data transfer between 00:00 (UTC+8) on July 1, 2021 and 24:00 (UTC+8) on July 1, 2022, you can claim a free outbound data transfer plan.

  • You can claim only one outbound data transfer plan with each Alibaba Cloud account. The outbound data transfer plan is automatically applied to offset 50 TB of outbound data transfer each month. The validity period of the outbound data transfer plan is 12 months.
  • You must enable billing for outbound data transfer before the claimed outbound data transfer plan can be used to offset outbound data transfer.
  • An outbound data transfer plan takes effect immediately after you claim it. The outbound data transfer plan is reset to 50 TB at the beginning of each month. The remaining quota of a month cannot be transferred to the following month.

    For example, you claim the outbound data transfer plan at 12:00 (UTC+8) on July 31, 2021.The remaining 20 TB is cleared at 24:00 (UTC+8) on July 31, 2021. At 00:00 (UTC+8) on August 1, 2021, the outbound data transfer plan is reset to 50 TB for you to offset the cost of outbound data transfer in August.

  • Outbound data transfer plans apply to all regions. The system applies an outbound data transfer plan to the regions that incur outbound data transfer in sequence.

    For example, 100 TB of data is transferred in the China (Beijing) region. Then, 80 TB of data is transferred in the US (Virginia) region. In this case, the free data transfer plan is used to offset 50 TB of data transfer in the China (Beijing) region.

Step 1: Claim an outbound data transfer plan

Alibaba Cloud provides free outbound data transfer plans for Express Connect users. The system automatically uses your outbound data transfer plan to offset 50 TB of outbound data transfer each month.

  1. Log on to the Express Connect console.
  2. In the top navigation bar, select the region and click Exclusive Physical Connection in the left-side navigation pane.
  3. In the Claim Outbound Data Transfer Plan section, click Claim Now.
  4. On the page that appears, check the information about the data transfer plan and click Buy Now.
  5. Read and select Terms of Service, click Pay, and then complete the payment.

Step 2: Enable billing for outbound data transfer

You must enable billing for outbound data transfer before you can use the data transfer plan to offset data transfer.

  1. Log on to the Express Connect console.
  2. In the top navigation bar, select the region and click Exclusive Physical Connection in the left-side navigation pane.
  3. In the Enable Outbound Data Transfer Billing section, click Enable Now.
  4. On the page that appears, read and select Terms of Service. Then, click Activate.

Step 3: Request a quota increase on VBRs

After you enable billing for outbound data transfer, you can create VBRs free of charge for each Express Connect circuit. You can create 10 free VBRs within the current account and 5 free VBRs for every other account. You can also request a quota increase on VBRs that your Alibaba Cloud account can create.
Note For more information about the quota of VBRs, see Limits.
  1. Log on to the Express Connect console.
  2. In the top navigation bar, select the region and click Exclusive Physical Connection in the left-side navigation pane.
  3. In the Increase VBR Quota section, click Upgrade Now.
  4. On the Request Quota Increase page, specify the requested quantity and click OK.

View data transfer monitoring data

You can view the outbound data transfer of an Express Connect circuit in the console.

  1. Log on to the Express Connect console.
  2. In the top navigation bar, select the region and click Exclusive Physical Connection in the left-side navigation pane.
  3. Find the Express Connect circuit that you want to view and click Monitoring in the Monitor column.
    By default, the system displays monitoring data collected within the last day. You can view monitoring data by hour or by day. The system allows you to select a predefined time period or specify a custom time range.
    • Predefined time periods: 1 hour, 3 hours, 6 hours, 12 hours, 1 day, 3 days, 7 days, and 14 days.
    • Custom time period: If you set the time granularity to hours, you can specify a time period of at most 24 hours. If you set the time granularity to days, you can specify a time period of at most 30 days.