This topic describes the billing methods of images and provides examples on how to calculate image fees.

Overview

You may be charged for using Elastic Compute Service (ECS) images. The following table describes the billing details for different types of images.
Type Billing description
Public image Public images are provided by Alibaba Cloud and are billed based on the operating system.
  • The prices of Windows Server public images are subject to the instance types that you select. The price information is displayed on the instance buy page when you create an instance in the ECS console.
  • The prices of Red Hat Enterprise Linux public images are subject to the instance types that you select. The following section describes the prices:
    • Prices of images for instance types that have one to four vCPUs: subscription price of USD 43.00/month, subscription price of USD 501.00/year, and pay-as you-go price of USD 0.063/hour.
    • Prices of images for instance types that have at least five vCPUs: subscription price of USD 95.00/month, subscription price of USD 1,099.00/year, and pay-as you-go price of USD 0.14/hour.
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server public images are subject to the instance types that you select. The following section describes the prices:
    • Prices of images for instance types that have one or two vCPUs: subscription price of USD 24.46/month, subscription price of USD 235.23/year, and pay-as you-go price of USD 0.064/hour.
    • Prices of images for instance types that have three or four vCPUs: subscription price of USD 50.15/month, subscription price of USD 471.54/year, and pay-as you-go price of USD 0.127/hour.
    • Prices of images for instance types that have at least five vCPUs: subscription of USD 58.62/month, subscription price of USD 564.60/year, and pay-as you-go price of USD 0.152/hour.
  • Public images that run other operating systems are free of charge.
Custom image
Custom images are created from instances or snapshots or imported from your computer. The billing involves two parts:
  • Snapshot fee: Snapshots are automatically generated when you create a custom image. You are charged for the snapshots if you retain the custom image. The snapshots are billed based on the amount of storage space they occupy. For more information, see Snapshots.
  • Image fee: If you use a custom image derived from a paid image, you are still charged for the custom image.
    Note If the custom image is an imported custom image that runs a Windows operating system, you are charged based on the license type of the operating system. If the license type is Aliyun or Auto, you are charged for the custom image. If the license type is Bring Your Own License (BYOL), you are not charged for the custom image. For more information about license types, see the "What types of licenses can I use when I import custom images?" section in Image FAQ.

    For example, assume that you create a custom image from an instance that uses a paid image, and then you create an instance from the custom image. You are charged for the custom image in addition to the snapshots.

Shared image

Shared images are shared to you by other Alibaba Cloud accounts. If you use a shared image that is derived from a paid image, you are charged for the shared image.

For example, if you use a paid image that is shared to you by another Alibaba Cloud account to create an instance, you are charged for the shared image.

Alibaba Cloud Marketplace image Alibaba Cloud Marketplace images are provided by independent software vendors (ISVs). The prices are displayed on the buy page of Alibaba Cloud Marketplace images.
Community image Community images are free of charge.

Billing methods

You must select an image when you create an instance. The billing method and billing cycle of the image are the same as those of the instance. The following table describes the billing methods.
Billing method Billing rule References
Subscription The billing method of the image is the same as that of the instance. Price = Unit price of the image × Subscription duration. Subscription
Pay-as-you-go The billing method of the image is the same as that of the instance. Price = Unit price of the image × Billing duration. The billing cycle is accurate to the second. Pay-as-you-go
Note Images can be used only along with ECS instances. Reserved Windows instances already include public images at no additional cost and can cover public image charges.

Billing examples

The following table describes examples on how to calculate image fees. Assume that you purchase an image that contains the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.1 64-bit operating system for an instance that has two vCPUs in the China (Hangzhou) region.
Note The prices in the following table are for reference only. Prices on the Pricing tab of the Elastic Compute Service product page prevail.
Billing method Billing condition Fee (USD)
Subscription
  • Unit price of the image: USD 43.00/month
  • Subscription duration: one month
43.00 * 1 = 43.00
Pay-as-you-go
  • Unit price of the image: USD 0.063/hour
  • Billing duration: one month
0.063 * 24 * 30 = 45.36

References

For more information about image billing, see the "FAQ about the commercial availability of images" section in Image FAQ.