Enabling EBS-Optimized Instances on Running EC2 Instances

EBS Optimized InstancesIn this how to guide, you will learn how to convert your EC2 instances into EBS optimized instances.
Imagine you are part of a media organization that is running a website on an EC2 instance and is storing all of its media files (e.g., images, videos) in an EBS volume. In the beginning, everything goes smoothly, but as the organization gains more and more popularity, website traffic increases. As a result, image load times also increase. In efforts to identify the root cause behind this increase, you realize that the network throughput between EC2 instances and EBS volumes is fluctuating. Therefore, you need a solution that provides dedicated network throughput between EC2 instances and EBS volumes, consequently choosing to go with EBS optimized instances.


  • You are using an instance type that supports EBS optimized instances (you can find the list of EBS optimized instances here).

Step by Step

Step 1: Stop your EC2 instance

In order to convert an instance into an EBS optimized instance, you need to stop your instance.

Step 2: Convert your instance to be EBS optimized

If you are using the AWS Management Console, you can select your instance and click on ‘Actions’ at the top of your screen.
Select ‘Instance Settings’ in the drop down menu, then select ‘Change Instance Type’.

EBS Optimized Instances

You can then modify your instance type to the one that you prefer and click on EBS optimized. Some instance types are EBS optimized by default. For those instances, the checkbox is already enabled.

EBS Optimized Instances
Once applied, your instance will be converted into an EBS optimized instance.
If you are using the AWS command line interface tools, use the command below to modify your instance to be EBS optimized.

# aws ec2 modify-instance-attribute –instance-id <instance-id> –ebs-optimized
For example:
EBS Optimized Instances

If you are looking to modify your instance type, please use the following command:
# aws ec2 modify-instance-attribute –instance-id <instance-id> –instance-type “{\”Value\”:\”<instance-type>\”}”
For example:
EBS Optimized Instances

Step 3: Start your instance

Once the EBS optimized attribute is enabled on the instance, you can start the instance. Afterwards, there will be a dedicated network throughput between your EC2 instance and EBS volume. The network throughput depends on the type of instance.

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