EC2-Classic’s Final Stretch: Here’s What You Need To Know Before It's Retired

EC2-Classic retirement and the required migration process to VPC


After 15 years of service, EC2-Classic is now on its final stretch about to be retired by AWS, and its users are now required to migrate to VPC.

Another benefit that users will get is the extra instances on top of all the ones EC2-Classic was offering.
Another benefit that users will get is the extra instances on top of all the ones EC2-Classic was offering.
Key Facts
  1. 1

    EC2-Classic has a flat network model with public IP addresses

  2. 2

    VPC is more secure than EC2-Classic since it provides advanced security features that allow you to perform inbound and outbound filtering at the instance and subnet level.

  3. 3

    All the instances in EC2-Classic are also available in VPC


The continued evolution of the AWS cloud service platform is still on course with the announcement that EC2-Classic is about to be retired after 15 years of service. The AWS accounts that are currently using it are now advised to start migrating to a VPC before it is officially retired. Since 2013, AWS accounts have been VPC only and EC2-Classic was only made available if a user specifically requested it from support.

The EC2-Classic network was limiting because it had a flat model with public IP addresses assigned at launch time. The need to give more control to the users necessitated the release of Amazon VPC which isolates instances to the AWS account.

The retirement will be implemented in two stages and there are two important dates that are related to it.

  • The first one is October 30, 2021, when the EC2-Classic network will become unavailable to users that don’t have an active EC2-Classic instance.
  • The second date is August 15, 2022, when it will become unavailable to all users.
We are not planning to disrupt any workloads and we are giving you plenty of lead time so that you can plan, test, and perform your migration,
Jeff Barr
AWS chief evangelist

They will be notifying the accounts that are still using EC2-Classic but will not in any way disrupt the workloads of those accounts. The migration process has been made easier by the provisions of materials to help in implementing it.

AWS also has tools that users can utilize to migrate their instances with minimal downtimes.

  • The first tool is AWS Application Migration Service (AWS MGN), an agile service level replication tool that will make it possible to migrate the database and the instances with minimal interruption.
  • The second one is Support Automation Workflow, a migration tool that converts an instance into AMI, then replicates the security groups, and starts it in the destination VPC. The other available tools are the IP address migration tool and classic load balancers.

With all the benefits that VPC has over EC2-Classic, the users will definitely be impressed by the freedom they will now enjoy while configuring the networks. Another benefit that users will get is the extra instances on top of all the ones EC2-Classic was offering. Although it is a hassle to plan and execute the migration, the rewards from a more secure and efficient platform will definitely be worth it.

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