Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Always Free – Best in Class

Without a doubt, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) provides the most features and functionality in the “Always Free” category of public cloud providers. Whether you would like to create an instance to host your wordpress blog, or if you prefer to setup a minecraft server, OCI provides everything you need for free.

OCI Compute Instances

In a cloud environment, compute instances are the most integral part of the environment. These compute instances are virtual servers that will be used to run applications. If you are familiar with virtual machines, these compute instances are essentially virtual machines that run on the cloud.

Each compute instance runs an OS. Oracle Cloud offers various linux distros including Oracle Linux, Ubuntu, CentOS as well as Windows OS. All of the linux distros are Always Free-eligible (Windows is not).

In terms of the shape, or hardware specs that is Always Free-eligible:
– 2 AMD based Compute VMs with 1/8 OCPU** and 1 GB memory each.
– 4 Arm-based Ampere A1 cores and 24 GB of memory usable as one VM or up to 4 VMs.

What makes OCI stand above the rest is that with the “Always Free” tier, anyone can sign up and utilize these resources absolutely free and forever.

What Competitors Offer

The “Free” tier from other vendors such as AWS, Google, Azure typically only give you a certain amount of “credit” up front to test their services. Once the “credit” is gone, you can’t do much with compute instances. Other vendors do give compute instances for free even after the “credit” expires, but only a certain amount of compute time each month (not enough to be run 24×7).

OCI offers the most in their “Always Free” tier

With OCI, you can start your compute instances and run them 24×7 without any fees or charges as long as you stick to the Always Free-eligible OS and shape sizes.

Granted, the AMD based compute instance with 1/8 OCPU isn’t a beefy machine. However, it is powerful enough to run simple web services, teach yourself linux, or run simple tasks 24×7.

Recently, Oracle added a new free shape that includes ARM processors. I have yet to test out the ARM based instances but plan to do that in the near future.

For more information on everything included in the “Always Free” tier you can get additional details here.

At the time of this writing, none of the other major cloud providers come close to OCI in terms of their “Always Free” tier and the resources provided. Since everything is free, there is no down side to signing up. You will need to provide a credit card upon registering, but that is just to verify who you are, and that you are 18 years of age. You can use the “Always Free” resources free of charge forever (or at least until they decide to change their terms).

If you are a tinkerer like me, definitely check it out, you won’t regret it.

Categorized as Tech