Chloe McAree (McAteer)
Published on



This is part of a blog series giving a high level overview of the different services examined on the AWS Solution Architect Associate exam, to view the whole series click here.

Elastic File Storage (EFS) Summary

EFS Logo

  • Fully managed, scalable file storage that supports Network File Storage version 4 (NFSv4) and can be mounted to your EC2 instance.

  • Storage capacity is elastic and can scale to petabytes, growing and shrinking as you add/remove files.

  • Highly durable and available as data is stored across multiple Availability Zones.

  • Native to Unix & Linux, but not supported on Windows instances.

  • Only pay for what you use

  • Can migrate your on-premise file system to EFS, which can help lower your cost of ownership.

FSx Summary

  • Fully managed, highly performant, native Microsoft Windows file system.

  • Easily move Windows based applications that require storage to AWS

  • Can choose between using a single availability Zone or using Multiple Availability Zones, depending on your needs.

  • Data is automatically encrypted at rest and in transit.

  • Can integrate with other AWS services e.g. S3, CloudWatch, KMS etc.

  • FSx also supports AD users, access control lists, security policies and distributed files systems.

FSx for Lustre

  • Fully managed, fast and scalable file system which has optimised compute for intensive workloads.

  • Typically used for High Performance Computing (HPC) or machine learning workloads.

  • FSx for Lustre offers sub-millisecond latencies and millions of IOPS.

  • It can also can have up to hundreds of gigabytes per second of throughput.

When to use what?

  1. EFS → when you need scalable and resilient storage for linux instances.

  2. FSx (Windows) → when you require centralised storage for windows based applications e.g. Sharepoint

  3. FSx (Lustre) → when you need high speed or high capacity for HPC or ML workloads.