Object Storage Service (OSS)

Fully managed object storage service to store and access any amount of data from anywhere

Enterprise-ready Object Storage Service

Alibaba Cloud Object Storage Service (OSS) provides industry-leading scalability, durability and performance. Customers of all sizes and industries can use it to store and protect any amount of data for use cases, such as backup and restore, content distribution, data lakes, websites, mobile applications ,data archive and IoT devices.

OSS is designed for 99.9999999999% (12 9's) durability, and backed up with industry-leading SLA. It helps millions of companies to build a scalable, secure and cost-effective storage foundation. It is also one of the key services that empowers Alibaba's Double Eleven event every year.

OSS Use Cases

OSS integrates with CDN products to deliver reliable, scalable, flexible and cost effective content distribution solutions For media related use cases, content needs to be processed before it goes to the end user. For example, resize, rotate, or add water mark.

You might need content distribution solution when you build:
  • E-commerce platform
  • Social media
  • Video on demand
  • App Store
Data are important assets for organization. Data backup are critical to prevent data loss and escaple from ransomware. Cloud backup is a much more flexible and cost-effective approach. leverages all benefits cloud has. OSS is a scalable, durable, and cost effective storage option, which can be used to back up your data.
  • Use data online migration service
  • Use your own application or 3rd party solutions and target your backup destination to OSS
  • Backup to Hybrid Backup Recovery
Industries such as media, medical, government, and science usually keeps lots of data for a very long term and can grow to PBs. Traditional archive solution require customers to maintian physical infrastructure, which is expensive and requires upfront investment. Archive data to cloud is a flexible and cost effective solution.

OSS offers archive and deep archive storage to meet different archive pattern. The archive tier offers data retrieval time within one minute. And the cold archive tier offers expedited data retrieval time within an hour.
For social media applications, user may upload photos and videos, or do live streaming and share with others. OSS is a commonly used product in this use case:
  • With transfer acceleration, OSS will redirect your request to an optimal access point, and leverage its backbone network to speed up download and upload.
  • With media processing, the application only need to store high resolution images in OSS. OSS provides API to resize, rotate, and add watermark, etc.
Data are growing exponentially, and they are increasingly diverse. Out of all the data generated, 80% of data is unstructured, such as medical records, social media, business documents, and media files.

Use Object Storage Service as the storage foundation for your data lakes and big data analytics. With OSS you can easily ingest your data into the data lake, including:
  • IoT data
  • On-premises data
  • Cloud data
Static websites are websites in which all web pages consist only of static content, including scripts such as JavaScript code that is run on the client. You can use the static website hosting feature to host your static website in an Object Storage Service (OSS) bucket and use the endpoint of the bucket to access the website. In addition, you can configure HTTPS, CName or CDN for your websites.

OSS Benefits

  • Industry-leading SLA

    OSS is designed for 99.9999999999% (12 9's) durability with multi-layer redundancy and end-to-end data verification design. OSS provides high standard SLA, 99.99% availability for local redudant storage and 99.995% availability for zone redudant storage.

    OSS has 10+ years of history and is the storage foundation for Alibaba E-commerce platform. It passed the tests of Alibaba Double Eleven event every year and supported billions of users. And its multi-layer redundancy and end-to-end data verification design make sure it is highly durable and reliable.


  • Cost-effective and easy-to-consume

    OSS offers four tiers of storage: Standard, Infrequent Access, Archive, Cold Archive. Each tier is cost-optimized for specific storage pattern. The archive tier offers data retrieval time within one minute. And the cold archive tier offers expedited data retrieval time within an hour.

    OSS supports pay-as-you-go and different capacity reservation plans. In addition, it supports Storage Capacity Unit, which allows you to plan your all storage budget and usage in one place.

    Learn more about classes of storage and life-cycle policies >

  • Enterprise-ready security and compliance

    OSS makes sure your data is secure, in transit, in storage, or during access. Bring your own key (BYOK) encryption ensures your data is encrypted when it is stored in cloud platform. Write-Once-Ready-Many (WORM) prevents malicious or accidental data deletion.

    OSS integrates with Sensitive Data Protection to identify sensitive data, such as PII data. In addition, OSS is the only cloud storage service in China that has passed the audit and certification of Cohasset Associates and can meet specific requirements for electronic data storage.

    Learn more about OSS security and compliance >

  • Easy data migration

    Customers do not need to switch to different storage tools when they migrate objects from other object sotrage service. OSS APIs that interact with objects are compatible with Amazon S3. Also to help with data migration, the online migration service provides free managed migration engine to transfer objects from a variety of data sources, such as Amazon S3, Azure Blob, Google Cloud, etc

    Learn more about migrate to OSS from AWS S3 and Data Online Migration service >

  • Built-in media processing

    OSS provides built-in media processing feature to simplify developer experience and the need to maintain a compute cluster for these tasks. You can add Image Processing (IMG) parameters to GetObject requests to process image objects stored in Object Storage Service (OSS). For example, you can add image watermarks to images or convert image formats. You can also use OSS to capture video snapshots and provides examples.

    Learn more about migrate to OSS image processing and video processing >

  • Analytic engines support

    OSS makes data available to all different analytic engines. Out of the box, OSS integrates with lots of Alibaba cloud analytic engines including Elastic Map reduce, Max Compute, Flink, Data Lake Analytics, and also machine learning products including platform of AI, EMR –Data Science. It is compatible with open sources products, including Databricks, Spark Hadoop, Presto, Impala, etc.

    Learn more about integration with Max Compute and DLA >

How OSS Works

Storage Classes

OSS design 4 tiers of storage to help customers to optimize the cost. Use Standard tier for your hot data and Infrequent Access tier for less accessed data. If you need to archive your data, you can choose Archive or Cold Archive. Our Archive tier offers retrieval time within one minute while it takes minutes to hours with our competitor. For cold archive, the retrieval time is within an hour, while it takes 12 hours to 48 hours with our competitors.

Simple Billing

Some storage fees are hard to predict, such as API requests. A fault program can generate lots of API requests. Therefore, OSS designs a set of free quotas for the following billable items: read API requests, write API requests, internet egress.

Please refer to free quota page for more details.

Tranfer Acceleration

Object Storage Service (OSS) uses data centers distributed around the globe to implement transfer acceleration. When a request is sent to your bucket, it is parsed and routed to the data center where the bucket is located over the optimal network path and protocol. The transfer acceleration feature provides an optimized end-to-end acceleration solution to accessing OSS over the Internet.

Meida Processing

You can add Image Processing (IMG) parameters to GetObject requests to process image objects stored in Object Storage Service (OSS). For example, you can add image watermarks to images or convert image formats.

Back to Origin

You can configure back-to-origin rules for a bucket. If a request is sent to access an object that does not exist in a bucket for which back-to-origin rules are configured, OSS obtains the requested object from the origin specified by the back-to-origin rules. You can configure mirroring-based or redirection-based back-to-origin rules for hot migration and specific request redirection.

For more information, see Manage back-to-origin configurations.

Customer Stories

Animal Logic is a world-leading independent creative digital studio. It produces hundreds of terabytes of data every day and needs a scalable and reliable storage solution. Through Cloud Storage Gateway, generated data are transfered to OSS, which provides 12 9's durability. With OSS version control, all data are protected against accidental operation mistakes. With lifecycle policy, the storage solution reduces the total cost of owenrship by 50%.

Yeahmobi is an international leading digital service provider, providing clients with high-end monetization service with the access to high quality global users. Working together with Alibaba cloud, Yeahmobi designed a data migration solution to seamlessly migrate their data to Alibaba cloud OSS. With new the datalake architecture, that decouples compute and storage, they are able to get rid of the need to build their own HDFS cluster and scale their compute instances based on their business needs. The operating costs have been reduced by 50%.

The storage solution of Alibaba Cloud helps Xpeng Motors save time and costs and improve security and computing efficiency in the whole process from data collection, data transfer, and data upload through to data computation. This solution helps Xpeng Motors increase the efficiency of collaborative R&D on IoV technologies by 40%.

Liulishuo English is a very popular application for adults to learn English. Using OSS, Liulishuo built a data lake to store data from all different applications, which becomes "China English Voice Databases" with hundreds of billions of records. Based on business needs, Liulishuo can scale their compute infrasturcture for cost optimization.

Alibaba Cloud services can help us reduce the average cost of requirements by 30%, enhance data processing efficiency, and increase service scalability. This way, we can dedicate more energy to business innovation and traffic effectiveness.