Testing the new Alibaba Cloud g8y ECS Instances

- 5 mins read

As part of being an Alibaba Cloud MVP, sometimes I get to test from time to time new products from this cloud provider, which is a really nice thing to have. This greatly helps me with my business, Guztia Consulting, as I specialise in Accelerating Sites in China and regular freebies helps me stay up to date with everything.

Alibaba's own chip, the Yitian 710
Alibaba's own chip, the Yitian 710

What Is New On This Generation?

In this latest generation, ECS g8y instances boast ARM v9 architecture CPUs, marking a significant leap in performance. They claim a 20% increase in computing power over industry benchmarks, along with a 50% boost in energy efficiency. Additionally, advancements in network and storage performance, coupled with the adoption of the fourth-generation SHENLONG architecture, ensure enhanced capabilities for cloud-native and AIC applications.

Let’s see again what is this SHENLONG thing

The latest SHENLONG architecture from Alibaba Cloud, unveiled at the Apsara Conference 2021, packs a serious punch in terms of performance. Compared to its predecessor, it boasts a 300% increase in storage IOPS, a 100% boost in network PPS, and an impressive 80% reduction in network latency. Plus, it introduces the industry’s first large-scale elastic RDMA acceleration capability with its upgraded eRDMA network architecture. In simpler terms, it’s like giving your tech setup a turbocharged upgrade!

Presentation of SHENLONG 4 in 2021
Presentation of SHENLONG 4 in 2021

Very well, let’s test it!

For this article I made a couple of tests to see, with real numbers on the table, the actual differences of both old and new generation. Let’s do it:

Geekbench 5.4.0 Benchmark

Geekbench measures your device’s CPU and GPU Compute performance. For this. I used the g6r.large instance type (Ampere Altra / AltraMax) and a new g8y.large one (Yitian 710). I set up both machines with Aliyun Linux 3.9, installed Docker and then ran docker run --rm -ti ctrlok/geekbench:m1 to test on arm.

ecs.g6r.large VS ecs.g8y.large

Yitian 710 VS Ampere Altra / AltraMax
Yitian 710 VS Ampere Altra / AltraMax

That’s 25.2% increase in performance in single core and 25.7% in multicore!

Difference in pricing

In this case the hourly price of an instance changes a little bit, costing less compared with the older generation. To put things in perspective, the hourly price of the old ecs.g6r.large instance was USD$0.1054. Now compare that with the hourly price of a new ecs.g8y.large being USD$0.0961. This is $0.0093 cheaper per hour or around $6.80 less per month under this new configuration.

This means a price decrease of around 9% with a performance increase of around 25%. This is actually amazing news, as you get way more for every dollar!


Well, as we are seeing today, the new generation is a real step-up in compute capacity, and it costs less. If you are running an ECS Instance with an older generation, it is definitely time to make the jump and update. This upgrade will get you more bang for your buck!

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