First experience using Alibaba Cloud

Alibaba Cloud (Aliyun) has been quite aggressively promoting their cloud offering. Every new user will receive $300 worth of credit to try out or purchase Alibaba Cloud services. (referral link)

To register with Alibaba Cloud is quite simple. Once you have verified your email address, mobile number and successfully added a verified payment method, you will receive $50 USD credit for Elastic Computing products + $250 USD credit for non-Elastic Computing products.

Now, I am creating an ECS instance.
Creating Alibaba Cloud Elastic Compute Service

For an easy start, under the Starter Package, I selected a small instance which includes 1 Core CPU, 1GB Memory, 40GB SSD Cloud Disk and 1TB Data Transfer.
Alibaba Cloud ECS Choose the Plan

Next, is to select the Datacenter Region and Zone. Do note that the final price is depending which datacenter region the ECS instance is running. For example, the same instance on mainland China will cost USD$19 per month, USD$9 in Hong Kong and USD$4.5 on datacenter worldwide (Singapore, Sydney, Frankfurt, Virginia, Silicon Valley). As of August 2017, Alibaba Cloud is operated in 12 regions.
I have chosen Singapore Datacenter and let the portal randomly put the instance on a zone (zone A or zone B).
Alibaba Cloud Datacenter Region and Zone

For this experimental, I am going to select LEMP stack on CentOS 7 (64bits) from Ali Cloud Marketplace.
Alibaba Cloud Choose the Operating System ECS instance

Remember to activate automatic renewal for your ECS instance when choosing the Pricing Model, if you plan to run the instance for a longer period or production services. Otherwise, if you failed to renew within 15 days after expiration, the instance will be shut down. This manual renewal is suitable for POC, test or demo environment.
Alibaba CLoud Choose Pricing Model

Finally, confirm your ECS instance configuration. For this setup, I’ll be paying USD$4.82 (Base price USD$4.50 and Taxes USD$0.32)
Alibaba Cloud Confirm Order

Just wait for a couple of minutes, the ECS instance will be ready.
Alibaba Cloud ECS instance list

Interested to try out Alibaba Cloud with $300 free credit, use my Alibaba Cloud referral link.

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