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AWS London users suffer "insufficient capacity" problems with T2 Micro Instances

Users of AWS's London-hosted T2 Micro Instances suffered capacity issues on Friday 24 March

Amazon Web Services (AWS) ran into technical difficulties on Friday 24 March, as the cloud giant seemingly struggled to keep up with the demand for London-hosted versions of its T2 Micro Instances.

Users attempting to use the service on Friday received error messages telling them the EU-West-2a availability zone in London had insufficient capacity to fulfil their orders.

Computer Weekly understands the error message began appearing for the first time on Friday for users, with several querying whether or not it means AWS is running too close to full capacity in one of its two London-based availability zones.

This hypothesis has been put forward by users who claim manually shifting their workloads from the affected availability zone to an alternative one had provided them with a temporary workaround.

In a statement, on the AWS service status page on 24 March, the company confirmed the service had run into problems, but only for users attempting to launch fresh T2 Micro Instances.

It also advised users at the time to opt for alternative T2 Instance types to run their workloads until it was able to bring on additional capacity online at around 7pm on Friday evening.

“Until capacity returns to normal levels, some customers may continue to see Insufficient Capacity Errors for new launch requests. In those cases, we continue to recommend using t2.nano, t2.small, t2.medium, t2.large or any of the other instance families,” the page stated.

“All other instance families (C4, D2, I3, M4, R4 and X1) and instances that are currently running remain unaffected. We expect t2.micro instance capacity to return to normal levels within the next hour.”

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The AWS service status dashboard confirmed the problem was resolved at around 8pm.

Introduced in 2014, the T2 Micro Instances provide AWS users with the option to purchase cloud-based compute capacity in smaller-than-usual increments, and are geared towards workloads that occasionally – rather than consistently – require high levels of central processing unit.

According to AWS, ideal use cases for the instance type include developer environments, small databases and web servers.

Computer Weekly contacted AWS for further comment on this story, but was redirected to the company's service status page for further information.

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