I currently have a m3.medium as production PostgreSQL server but I want to move it to RDS with the Multi-AZ feature.

Since the CPU usage of our current server is never higher than 5% and the RAM usage is 500MB I was considering using a cheaper instance like the t2.small on RDS. On a few online forums and on Amazon help pages they don't recommend the small instances for a production database. Is this just marketing or are there some real technical issues that may come up?

The only difference I found between the t2 and m3 instance types is the burstable CPU but since our DB server doesn't use any CPU I wonder what the other dangers are.


T2 instances are given cpu time based on a credit system, and t2.micros are have the least overall cpu capability in the instance class. These credits are accumulated at a rate of 6 per hour on a t2.micro, which gives you the ability to burst to 100% of the cpu core for 6 minutes. All other times you are only granted 10% of the core. Furthermore, you will only accumulate credits if your instance is completely idle.


Depending on the purpose on your production server, and how much downtime is acceptable, ... you can always start with a t2.micro, and upgrade the instance if you see that there is need for more resources. Mostly you can upgrade the instance type in 3-5 minutes. Just power off, upgrade type and power on. I think that's more than a reasonable 'maintenance downtime'.

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  • Seems like it could be a good fit for the asker. Danny, can you replay any of the workload? If so, it would be worth trying a test instance. – Colin 't Hart Jun 22 '15 at 7:45

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