Migration to Amazon EBS GP3

Written by Jon Myer

What is AWS EBS GP2 or GP3?

AWS EBS is Elastic Block Storage with SSD (Solid-state drives) backed volumes. There are two SSD kinds, from General Purpose (GP) and Provisioned IOPS (PIOPS).

The difference between the two types of SSDs are:

  • General Purpose – Provides a balance of price and performance and is the recommended volume for most workloads.
  • Provisioned IOPS – Provides high performance for mission-critical, low-latency, or high-throughput workloads.

At re:Invent 2020, Andy Jassy introduced GP3 as the next generation of SSD drives, offering up to 20% lower price per GB than existing GP2 volumes and in-place migration.

Should I upgrade from GP2 to GP3?

The answer is simple as it offers better performance, cheaper. I personally think the question should be, “Why aren’t you moving to GP3?”

Is the juice worth the squeeze?

EBS volumes are often one of the top 4 expense line items, and Cloudwiry’s customers have been able to save up 73% when upgrading over-provisioned io1 and io2 volumes to GP3 and an average of 15% when upgrading from GP2 to GP3. This has resulted in 6 figure savings per month for some of our larger customers.

GP3 Advantages

  • 3000 free IOPS – with GP3, you get 3000 IOPS for free, while GP2 would need you to pay for 1TB GP2 SSD to get the 3000 IOPS.  
  • 125 MB/s free throughput: To get the same throughput with GP2, you would need 162.7GB volume.
  • Cheaper GP3 is cheaper by 10-20%. GP3 costs $0.08/GB-month vs $0.10/GB-month for GP2. This discount diminishes to 10% if your larger volumes need the extra IOPS that come with higher capacity GP2.

Similarities between GP2 and GP3

I know comparing the similarities between them might help the conversation because you can provision a volume size from 1GB to 16TB. Also, the MAX IOPS per volume of 16,000 and per instance is 260,000, and durability is the same at 99.8-99.9%.

Why is not everyone converting immediately?

Identifying all the volumes and sizing the savings for the gp3 upgrade requires detailed analysis. The discount you get can vary based on your application’s IOPS and volume size needs. 

Also, the operations team needs to be trained to write and test the code changes needed to your infrastructure code. 

Additionally, staged rollout needs to be planned out in detail to manage the change across hundreds of thousands of volumes.

Simplifying GP3 upgrade with Cloudwiry?

Cloudwiry setup takes 1 hour, and your savings are identified and sized in less than 24 hours for most cases. Our system and team of experts provide tested scripts that enable staged rollout via your existing processes or Cloudwiry’s automation in a controlled manner.

Step1: Identify all EBS volumes that benefit better price-performance with GP3.

Step2: Size the savings for existing IO2, IO1, and GP2 volumes.

Step3: Enable friction-free savings with expert support, scripts, and automation.

Migration with the Cloudwiry App

1. Log in to the console and get a list of recommended EBS volumes that can be moved to GP3 under the “Recommendations” tab.

2. Go to “Automations”.

3. Create an automation – specify the team with the candidates and the schedule.

4. Migrate at the scheduled time.


What are the benefits of moving from GP2 to GP3?

Gp3 offers up to 20% discount for the same performance. It also provides 3000 IOPS and 125MB/s throughput for free.

When do you get to see the benefits? 

As soon as the conversion finished (that could take few minutes to hours)

Will I experience downtime, and how much downtime is involved?

Downtime is not expected, though a performance degradation may happen while the conversion is happening.

Is it reversible?

Yes, you can reverse it as often as your like, but you need to wait six hours or until the volume, status changes into “in-us.”. While you wait, the volume is in a locked state not allowing it to be modified.

Useful Resources:



For more strategies on how to optimize your cloud, schedule a call with our cloud experts or drop us an email at hello@cloudwiry.com.