Amazon S3 vs Glacier

  • Amazon S3 is a durable, secure, simple, and fast storage service, while Amazon S3 Glacier is used for archiving solutions.
  • Use S3 if you need low latency or frequent access to your data. Use S3 Glacier for low storage cost, and you do not require millisecond access to your data.
  • You have three retrieval options when it comes to Glacier, each varying in the cost and speed it retrieves an object for you. You retrieve data in milliseconds from S3.
  • Both S3 and Glacier are designed for durability of 99.999999999% of objects across multiple Availability Zones.
  • S3 is designed for availability of 99.99% while Glacier has no percentage provided by AWS.
  • S3 can be used to host static web content, while Glacier cannot.
  • In S3, users create buckets. In Glacier, users create archives and vaults.
  • You can store a virtually unlimited amount of data in both S3 and Glacier.
  • A single Glacier archive can contain 40TB of data.
  • S3 supports Versioning.
  • You can run analytics and querying on S3.
  • You can configure a lifecycle policy for your S3 objects to automatically transfer them to Glacier. You can also upload objects directly to either S3 or Glacier.
  • S3 Standard-IA and One Zone-IA have a minimum capacity charge per object of 128KB. Glacier’s minimum is 40KB.
  • Objects stored in S3 have a minimum storage duration of 30 days (except for S3 Standard). Objects that are archived to Glacier have a minimum 90 days of storage. Objects that are deleted, overwritten, or transitioned to a different storage class before the minimum duration will incur the normal usage charge plus a pro-rated request charge for the remainder of the minimum storage duration.
  • Glacier has a per GB retrieval fee.
  • You can transition objects from some S3 storage classes to another. Glacier objects cannot be transitioned to any S3 storage class.
  • S3 (standard, standard-IA, and one zone-IA) is backed by an SLA.


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