This article was written by Josh Hilliker, a Senior Cloud Solutions Architect in Data Center Sales at Intel. 

Intel and Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced the general availability of Amazon EC2 M7i-flex instances and Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) M7i instances. Both EC2 instances are powered by custom 4th generation Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors that bring Intel® Accelerator Engines to the masses using Xeon you can trust and AWS's expansive global footprint. The Intel® Accelerator Engines provide unmatched customer value, including increased performance, cost savings, and sustainability advantages for the biggest and fastest-growing workloads.

The launch comes at a time when 80% of decision-makers worldwide recognize that digital infrastructure is important or mission-critical in enabling the achievement of their business goals. They are rapidly transforming their infrastructures that span compute, storage, network, and infrastructure software and automation. This includes enterprise applications, AI/ML analytics, and security with an economic need to maintain and optimize legacy and modern applications and data, with sustainability in mind.*

"Intel and AWS have partnered for over 17 years to deliver compute with more performance at lower costs. With new EC2 M7i and M7i-flex instances, I'm excited to continue this collaboration with Intel and deliver EC2 instances that are powered by custom 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, which are only available on AWS, and offer the best performance among comparable Intel processors in the cloud. M7i-flex instances provide customers with the easiest way to get price performance benefits and lower costs for most general-purpose workloads. For workloads with more stringent performance needs, M7i instances provide continuous high compute performance and larger sizes. With both M7i and M7i-flex, customers can run general purpose workloads efficiently, drive costs down, and get the latest generation performance benefits."

- Raj Pai, VP Product Management, Amazon EC2, AWS

Differentiation: Accelerate the greatest range of your workloads

M7i-flex instances deliver compelling price performance for a variety of general-purpose workloads, such as web and app servers, virtual desktops, enterprise applications, microservices, and batch processing, with no application changes necessary for customers using general-purpose instances.

M7i instances are an ideal choice for workloads that need the largest instance sizes or continuous high CPU usage, such as large application servers and databases, gaming servers, CPU-based machine learning, and video streaming.

These new instances – Amazon EC2 M7i-flex and M7i – bring 4th Gen Xeon's Intel® Accelerator Engines that help customers redefine performance and accelerate business outcomes and results:

  • The Intel® Advanced Matrix Extensions (Intel® AMX) offer a much-needed alternative in the market for customers running AI models with fewer than 10 billion parameters, boosting inference and training without additional hardware.
  • The Intel® Data Streaming Accelerator (Intel® DSA) is designed to offload the most common data movement tasks that cause overhead in data center-scale deployments. Intel DSA helps speed up data movement across the CPU, memory, and caches, as well as all attached memory, storage, and network devices.
  • Intel® In-Memory Analytics Accelerator (Intel® IAA) lets customers run database and analytics workloads faster, with potentially greater power efficiency. And increases query throughput and decreases the memory footprint for in-memory database and big data analytics workloads. Intel IAA is ideal for in-memory databases, open-source databases, and data stores like RocksDB and ClickHouse.
  • Intel® QuickAssist Technology (Intel® QAT) – Intel QAT web page helps reduce system resource consumption—and TCO—by accelerating cryptography and data compression. By offloading encryption, decryption, and compression, this built-in accelerator helps free up processor cores so that systems can serve a larger number of clients or use less power.

AMX will be offered for both virtual and bare metal instances of M7i-flex and M7i, whereas DSA, IAA, and QAT accelerators will be available on bare metal on M7i.


"We've worked closely with AWS to launch the 4th Gen Xeon-based M7i and M7i-flex instances and value our years-long collaboration to bring cutting-edge technologies to the cloud market. With this launch, AWS customers around the globe can benefit from Xeon's increased AI efficiency, HPC performance leadership, and a lower overall TCO."

- Lisa Spelman, Corporate VP and GM, Xeon Products, Intel

Flexibility, Choice, and Cost Optimization

M7i-flex instances provide the easiest way for you to get price performance benefits for a majority of general-purpose workloads. They deliver up to 19%(1) better price performance compared to M6i instances. M7i-flex instances offer the most common sizes, from large to 8xlarge, with up to 32 vCPUs, 128 GiB memory, and are a great first choice for applications that don't fully utilize all compute resources.

M7i instances offer price-performance benefits for workloads that need larger, more robust instance sizes (up to 192 vCPUs and 768 GiB memory) or continuous high CPU usage. M7i instances deliver up to 15%1 better price performance compared to M6i instances.

Developers: Lead AI performance out of the box with the most popular libraries and frameworks

Developers can unleash the full potential of these new M7i-flex and M7i instances to support increasing AI workloads. 4th Gen Intel® Xeon® processors, featuring the built-in Intel® Advanced Matrix Extensions (Intel® AMX) to accelerate inference and training, can run any AI workload end-to-end by combining a general-purpose CPU and a built-in matrix multiplication engine with discrete accelerator performance. Developers can continue to run data processing and inferencing workloads—and now can also conduct fine-tuning and small and medium deep learning training models.**

Helping Contribute to Your Sustainability Goals

4th Gen Intel Xeon processors can lower customers' energy use emissions, also known as scope 2 emissions, due to their energy efficiency through innovative design of built-in accelerators. These accelerators enable certain workloads to run faster while using less energy. On average, performance per watt is increased by 2.9X using Xeon's built-in accelerators. The best thing? These accelerators were designed for today's in-demand workloads and deliver these incredible increases over 3rd Gen Intel Xeon processors: up to 10X for AI inference and learning; up to 3X performance for data analytics, 2X higher compression with 95% fewer cores.

Helping Achieve Business Priorities

With this collaboration and announcement of the new M7i-flex and M7i instances between Intel and AWS, businesses and partners including systems integrators and channel partners, can more easily and flexibly address future digital infrastructure demands. 

*IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Future of Digital Infrastructure 2023 Prediction.
** QAT, IAA, and DSA accelerators are only available on the M7i bare metal instances. AMX is available on all sizes of both M7i and M7i-flex.
1. Test by Intel on July 25, 2023. 

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