When a subscription instance expires, its operation may be affected. To continue using the instance, you must renew it within the designated period. Otherwise, instance resources such as vCPUs, memory, and disks are released and their stored data lost permanently. This topic describes the renewal feature of ECS instances.

Overview

The renewal feature is applicable only to subscription instances. Pay-as-you-go instances do not need to be renewed, but you must ensure that you have sufficient balance in your linked bank card, PayPal, or Paytm (India) account to cover the related costs.

If you renew the instance before it expires, the instance continues to work normally and retains all of its resources. For information about statuses of a subscription instance after it expires, see Subscription.

You cannot cancel a renewal order for a subscription instance after the payment is made. The following section describes functions related to instance renewal.
  • Manual renewal: You can manually renew the instance in the ECS console at any time before the instance is automatically released. For more information, see Manual renewal.
  • Auto-renewal: After the auto-renewal feature is enabled, the instance is automatically renewed before it expires. You can enable this feature to reduce management costs and prevent instances from being automatically released. For more information, see Enable auto-renewal.
  • Renewal and configuration downgrade: If current configurations of the ECS instance exceed your requirements, you can downgrade configurations when you renew the instance to minimize costs. New configurations take effect starting from the next billing cycle. For more information, see Renew for configuration downgrade.
  • Non-renewal: You can choose not to renew an instance upon expiration. In this case, the instance is stopped upon expiration and you will receive an expiration notification only once. You can modify the renewal settings at any time before the instance is stopped.
The following table lists the differences among three renewal methods.
Renewal method Configuration change Renewal time
Manual renewal Not supported Before the ECS instance is automatically released.
Auto-renewal Not supported From the third day before the instance expires.
If automatic payment deduction fails on the first attempt, Alibaba Cloud will continue to deduct the payment until the deduction succeeds or the instance expires. Alibaba Cloud renews the instance on the following days:
  • The third day and the first day before expiration
  • The expiration day
  • The seventh day and fifteenth day after expiration
Renewal and configuration downgrade Supported.
  • Within the 15 days before the ECS instance expires.
  • Within the 15 days after the ECS instance expires but before it is automatically released.

For example, if you have a subscription instance that is set to expire on April 30, 2019, you can renew the instance and downgrade the instance configurations from April 16, 2019 to April 30, 2019. If you fail to renew the instance during this period, the instance enters the Expired and Being Recycled state upon expiration. You can still renew the instance and downgrade the instance configurations from May 1, 2019 to May 15, 2019. If you do not renew the instance during this period, it is automatically released on May 16, 2019.

Manual renewal

Manual renewal only renews the base public bandwidth of an instance and not its temporarily upgraded public bandwidth. For information about how to upgrade the base public bandwidth, see Upgrade configurations of Subscription instances.

You can select one of the following renewal cycles when you manually renew an instance:
  • One month, two months, three months, four months, five months, six months, seven months, eight months, and nine months
  • One year
The status of a subscription ECS instance after expiration depends on whether the auto-renewal feature is enabled. The following table describes the effect of manual renewal on instances in different instance statuses:
Auto-renewal enabled Time period after expiration Instance status Effect of manual renewal
No Within the 15 days after expiration The instance is stopped. If an instance is manually renewed, its next billing cycle starts from the day that the instance is renewed.

For example, if your instance was stopped at 00:00:00 on May 10, 2017, but you renewed it for one month at 08:09:35 on May 23, 2017, the new billing cycle of the instance is from 08:09:35 on May 23, 2017 to 00:00:00 on June 24, 2017.

15-29 days after expiration The instance and its resources are released or unbound. Manual renewal cannot be performed.
30 days after expiration The instance and its resources were released or unbound. Manual renewal cannot be performed.
Yes Within the 15 days after expiration The instance is working properly. If an instance is manually renewed, its next billing cycle starts from the day that it expired.

For example, if your instance is set to expire at 00:00:00 on April 25, 2017, but you renewed it for one month on May 9, 2017, the new billing cycle of the instance is from 00:00:00 on April 25, 2017 to 00:00:00 on May 25, 2017.

15-29 days after expiration The instance is stopped. If an instance is manually renewed, its next billing cycle starts from the day that the instance is renewed.

For example, if your instance was stopped at 00:00:00 on May 10, 2017, but you renewed it for one month at 08:09:35 on May 23, 2017, the new billing cycle of the instance is from 08:09:35 on May 23, 2017 to 00:00:00 on June 24, 2017.

30 days after expiration The instance and its resources are released or unbound. Manual renewal cannot be performed.

Auto-renewal

You can enable auto-renewal on the Create Instance, Instances, or Renew page. Auto-renewal cannot be enabled for subscription ECS instances that expired. A subscription instance will be automatically renewed for a specific period of time if auto-renewal is enabled for the instance on one of the following pages:
  • When you enable auto-renewal on the Create Instance page:
    • If the instance subscription is one month, two months, three months, or six months long, ECS automatically renews the instance for one month when the subscription ends until you disable auto-renewal.
    • If the instance subscription is one year long, ECS automatically renews the instance for one year when the subscription ends until you disable auto-renewal.
  • When you enable auto-renewal for existing instances on the Instances page, you can set the auto-renewal duration to one month or one year. You can also modify the auto-renewal duration for an existing instance on the Instances page.
  • When you enable auto-renewal for existing instances on the Renew page, you can set the auto-renewal duration to one month, two months, three months, six months, one year, two years, or three years. You can also modify the auto-renewal duration for an existing ECS instance on the Renew page.

When the subscription period ends, ECS will renew the instance for the period that you selected until you disable auto-renewal. For example, if you select three months, ECS will renew the instance for three months each time before it expires until you disable auto-renewal.

After auto-renewal is enabled, the instance will be automatically renewed before it expires.
  • Alibaba Cloud sends an email reminder on the seventh day before the instance expires (T-7).
  • Alibaba Cloud deducts the payment for the next billing cycle from your bank card, PayPal, or Paytm (India) account on the third day before the instance expires (T-3). If the payment deduction fails, Alibaba Cloud will attempt to deduct the payment again up to four times on the following days until the deduction succeeds: the first day before the instance expires (T-1), the day the instance expires (T), the seventh day after the instance expires (T+6), and the fifteenth day after the instance expires (T+14).
    • Starting from 08:00:00 (UTC+8) on the deduction day, Alibaba Cloud performs auto-renewal in succession on all ECS instances that are set to expire. This means that the actual renewal time can be anytime between 08:00:00 (UTC+8) and 18:00:00 (UTC+8).
    • If the payment is deducted before T+14, the next billing cycle of the instance starts on the day the instance is renewed.
    • If the instance fails to be renewed during the five preceding deduction attempts, the instance will enter the Stopped state on T+15. After the instance enters the Stopped state, you cannot log on to or connect to the instance. In this case, you must manually renew the instance. If the instance is not manually renewed within the 15 days after it enters the Stopped state, the instance is released and its data lost permanently.
    • If the auto-renewal payment deduction fails, Alibaba Cloud will send you an email reminder. To avoid instances being unexpectedly stopped, check whether you have received a reminder.
    • If you have completed manual renewal before auto-renewal payment deduction is made, auto-renewal will not be performed for the current billing cycle.
Assume that you purchased an instance at 10:00:00 on November 8, 2017, with a subscription period of one month and auto-renewal enabled. The instance is set to expire at 00:00:00 on December 9, 2017. The following figure shows the actions performed in the first auto-renewal round. For information about status changes that occur after subscription resources expire, see Subscription.

Renewal and configuration downgrade

You can use the renewal and configuration downgrade feature to complete the following tasks:
  • Downgrade the instance type of a subscription instance.
  • Change the billing method of data disks from subscription to pay-as-you-go.
  • Change the billing method for Internet usage.
  • Adjust the public bandwidth.
You can select one of the following renewal durations when you renew and downgrade configurations of an instance:
  • One month, two months, three months, four months, five months, six months, seven months, eight months, and nine months
  • One year
When you use the renewal and configuration downgrade feature, take note of the following items:
  • After the instance is renewed and its configurations are downgraded, the new configurations take effect starting from the next billing cycle. Current configurations continue until the end of the current billing cycle.
  • If you perform the following operations during the renewal and configuration downgrade, you must restart the instance within the first seven days of the next billing cycle for new configurations to take effect. If you restart the instance on the seventh day of the new billing cycle, the instance continues to use the original configurations for the first six days.
    Notice You must restart an ECS instance by using the ECS console or by calling the RebootInstance operation. Restarting the instance from within the operating system will not work.
    • Change the instance type.
    • Change the public bandwidth value of a classic network-type instance from 0 Mbit/s to a non-zero value for the first time.
  • After you renew an instance and downgrade the instance configurations, you cannot perform the following operations within the rest of the current billing cycle: