This topic describes the impacts of overdue payments on Elastic Compute Service (ECS) instances or related resources and how to prevent and handle overdue payments. If payments in your account are overdue or about to become overdue, you can handle the payments by using the methods that are described in this topic to better manage resources and control costs.
If the credits in your Alibaba Cloud account, including the account balance and vouchers, are insufficient to cover the required payments, your account has overdue payments.
Subscription ECS resources
You paid upfront for subscription resources and can use the resources as expected even if payments become overdue in your account. When your account has overdue payments, you cannot perform operations that generate fees, such as purchasing new instances, upgrading instance configurations, or renewing subscription resources.
When your account has an overdue payment and a pay-as-you-go disk is attached to an unexpired instance in your account, the system limits the rate of the disk to suspend services. If the payment remains overdue for 15 days, the system detaches and releases the disk. The disk may fail to be detached. If the disk failed to be detached, you are no longer charged for the disk, and data that is stored on the disk may be lost. We recommend that you no longer use the disk.
Pay-as-you-go ECS resources
The system attempts to deduct the fees for pay-as-you-go ECS resources on the following days: on the payment due date (day T), the 7th day after the payment due date (day T+7), and the 14th day after the payment due date (day T+14).
Within 15 days after a payment becomes overdue
If the fees for a pay-as-you-go instance fail to be deducted on day T, the payment for the instance becomes overdue. Within 15 days after the payment becomes overdue, the instance continues to run. You can continue using existing resources, but you cannot purchase resources, renew resources, or upgrade instance configurations. The system attempts to deduct the fees on day T+7 and day T+14.
More than 15 days after a payment becomes overdue
If all attempts to deduct the fees for the pay-as-you-go instance fail, the instance is stopped on the 15th day after the payment due date (day T+15) and billing for the instance also stops. More than 15 days after the instance is stopped, the system releases, detaches, or disassociates the resources of the instance.
The following table describes whether resources of a pay-as-you-go instance are retained or released in different periods of time after the instance is stopped due to an overdue payment.
Within 15 days after the instance is stopped
More than 15 days after the instance is stopped
Computing resources (vCPUs and memory)
The computing resources (vCPUs and memory) of the instance are retained, but the instance stops providing services.
After an instance is stopped, you cannot connect to the instance or access the websites that are deployed on the instance. Service errors may also occur.
The computing resources (vCPUs and memory) are released.Note
If your computing resources (vCPUs and memory) are released due to overdue payments, the system notifies you by email.
Block storage devices
Cloud disks and data that is stored on the cloud disks are retained, but the cloud disks become unavailable.
Local disks and data that is stored on the local disks are retained, but the local disks become unavailable.
After cloud disks or local disks become unavailable, the disks cannot process read/write requests as expected. This affects the operation of the instances to which the disks are attached. For example, the read/write performance of applications may significantly decline, an extended period of time may be required to complete specific operations, or instances that run specific operating system versions may unexpectedly shut down or fail to restart.
Cloud disks are released and data that is stored on the cloud disks cannot be recovered.Note
Data disks that are created together with pay-as-you-go instances and pay-as-you-go data disks that are separately created on the Disks page in the ECS console are released.
Local disks are released and data that is stored on the local disks cannot be recovered.
If the instance is deployed in the classic network, the auto-assigned public IP address of the instance is retained.
If the instance is deployed in a virtual private cloud (VPC), the following rules apply:
The auto-assigned public IP address of the instance is retained.Important
If economical mode is enabled before the instance is stopped, the auto-assigned public IP address of the instance may be recycled after the instance is stopped due to an overdue payment. When the instance is restarted, the auto-assigned public IP address of the instance may change.
The elastic IP address (EIP) that is associated with the instance remains unchanged.
If the instance is deployed in the classic network, the auto-assigned public IP address of the instance is released.
If the instance is deployed in a VPC, the following rules apply:
The auto-assigned public IP address of the instance is released.
The EIP is disassociated from the instance.
All snapshots are retained, but automatic snapshots cannot be created. If you settle the overdue payment within 15 days after the instance is stopped, automatic snapshot policies that were applied to disks on the instance are automatically re-enabled to create snapshots for the disks.Important
Billing for existing snapshots continues and adds to the overdue amount.
All snapshots are deleted, except shared snapshots and snapshots that were used to create custom images. Snapshot data cannot be recovered.Important
You are charged for snapshots until the snapshots are deleted. Delete the snapshots that you no longer need.
Prevent and handle overdue payments
Settle overdue payments
If your account has overdue payments, your instances may be stopped. Complete overdue payments at the earliest opportunity to ensure service continuity.
Release resources that are no longer needed
If you no longer need an ECS resource, we recommend that you back up data and then release the resource at the earliest opportunity.
Specify an alert threshold
Log on to the Billing Management console and specify an alert threshold on the Account Overview page. If your account balance is lower than the alert threshold, the system notifies you by text message.
Specify an automatic release time
Specify an automatic release time for pay-as-you-go instances to prevent unnecessary costs and overdue payments. For more information, see Release an instance.