Switching EBS snapshot between multiple EC2 instances?

steve8918 asked:

I currently have a micro-tier EC2 instance, and several snapshots of my drive.

I’m running compilations that are taking a long time on the micro instance. I was wondering, is it feasible to shutdown my instance, fire up a more powerful tier of EC2, run my compiles on this more powerful instance, shut it down, and switch back to my original instance?

My answer:


  1. Stop your existing instance and detach the EBS volume from it.

  2. Create a new instance but do not start it. The new instance should use the same AKI/AMI as the original instance, or puppies will die.

  3. Attach your EBS volume to it.

  4. Start the new instance and run your job.

  5. When done, stop the new instance, detach the EBS volume and reattach it to the original instance.

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