You do not need to run a full cluster to get the added benefits of cloud computing. AWS offers single instances that are still much more powerful than most high-end workstations. For example, the c5.24xlarge (c5 instance) has 96-cores and 192GB of RAM which is powerful enough to run most simulations. This is the simplest use-case to setup.
- Experience with the AWS console
- Experience with SSH (X11) and SCP (Linux), or Remote Desktop (Windows)
- 1-2 hours
- Create and configure your VPC
- Create a key-pair
- Create and configure a License Server: Optional, for a single large license you may use a local (node-locked) license such as a trial.
- EC2 (Elastic Cloud Compute) Instances: For EC2 you only pay for what you use on a sub-second basis (while the instance is in the "Running" state). Our uses cases use on-demand instances, however, there are cheaper hourly rates available for longer-term contracts and spot computing instances. See Amazon EC2 pricing for details.
- EBS (Elastic Block Storage): These volumes are used by each EC2 instance as a system drive and are a fixed size set when the instance is launched. Charges are incurred whether the instances are in the "Running" or "Stopped" state. See Amazon EBS Pricing for details.
For example, running a c5.24xlarge instance (96-cores, 196GB of RAM) for a month straight (720 hours) with on-demand pricing would cost USD $3,000. We always recommend that you use AWS Cost Explorer to monitor your usage closely. You can also use Amazon Cost Calculator to create a detailed cost estimate for your specific needs.
Create a single workstation
Note: In the bellow guides, creating an AMI to launch future instances from is optional. If you later decide that you want to launch more instances you can just stop your single large workstation and create an AMI from its current state.
Option 1: Windows.
This option offers a familiar environment for most users.
You can connect to your instance and transfer files back and forth via Remote Desktop Connection (RDP).
Option 2: Linux.
You can transfer files via SCP or S3, and connect to your instance via SSH.
The GUI can be used through X11.
X11 GUI access you will require: