SIM-Cloud, a European AWS alternative: testing & comparison

Can the cloud of SIM-Networks, a German IT infrastructure provider, compete with AWS? In this article you will learn whether SIM-Cloud can be considered an Amazon AWS alternative based on multi-faceted testing.

SIM-Cloud vs AWS: who will win?

Amazon Web Services appeared on the market in 2006 and became the first public cloud in the world. Its main competitors are MS Azure and Google. Amazon controls over a third of the cloud service market and continues its steady growth. Its opponent, SIM-Cloud IaaS, was developed by German engineers and released in early 2016. It is deployed in 2 Tier III and Tier III+ data centers in Karlsruhe, Germany. As of 2019, the provider has clients in more than 100 countries across the world.

We have tested 3 important parameters: the RAM bandwidth, CPU core performance and the SSD storage. The configurations need to be as close to each other as possible so that the results are relevant. However, providers offer different vCPU/RAM volume combinations; this is why we have tested configurations with the closest corresponding RAM volume:

  • Amazon AWS: 8 CPU & 16 Gb RAM
  • SIM-Cloud: 8 CPU & 16 Gb RAM

The performance of the disks in SIM-Cloud was tested on standard SDD storage. We used 20 000 IOPS storage and regular SSD storage in AWS.

SiSoft Sandra RAM performance testing

SiSoft Sandra is a popular tool for comprehensive system testing and performance evaluation. It was used to test the RAM bandwidth. The value of this complex parameter determines the performance of the RAM. Evaluation criterion: the bigger the value, the better the RAM bandwidth.

Amazon AWS AWS SiSoft Sandra testing

SIM-Cloud SIM-Cloud SiSoft Sandra testing

The total RAM performance value of AWS is higher than that of its opponent: 43 Gb/s versus SIM-Cloud’s 30,78 Gb/s.

Cinebench r15 vCPU performance testing

Cinebench r15 is a tool that evaluates the CPU’s performance. The testing is done by rendering a 3D scene, during which threading can be adjusted. As was mentioned before, both IaaS solutions have 8 vCPU cores. Evaluation criterion: the larger the value, the better the result.

Amazon AWS AWS Cinebench r15 testing

SIM-Cloud SIM-Cloud Cinebench r15 testing

The testing shows that the CPUs of the German cloud perform better than Amazon’s product: AWS’ 624 vs SIM-Cloud’s 968.

vCPU performance testing through 1080p & 4K video rendering

HWBOT x265 benchmark is a CPU performance testing tool commonly used by overclockers. The CPU is tested by straining it with video rendering. We have used 2 formats for the test – 1080p and 4K. The results are measured in FPS (frames per second). Evaluation criterion: the bigger the FPS value, the higher the performance of the CPU.

1080p video rendering

Amazon AWS AWS HWBOT x265 benchmark 1080p testing

SIM-Cloud SIM-Cloud HWBOT x265 benchmark 1080p testing

4K video rendering

Amazon AWS AWS HWBOT x265 benchmark 4K testing

SIM-Cloud SIM-Cloud HWBOT x265 benchmark 4K testing

SIM-Cloud outperformed its competitor while rendering both 1080p and 4k videos.

CrystalDiskMark SSD storage performance test

CrystalDiskMark is an open-code tool for testing the performance of hard drives. The performance of the cloud SSDs was evaluated by testing sequential read/write operations in 32 queues with 32 threads. Evaluation criterion: the bigger the value, the better the result.

Amazon AWS 20 000 IOPS

AWS 20 000 IOPS CrystalDiskMark testing

Amazon AWS standard SSD

AWS standard SSD CrystalDiskMark testing


SIM-Cloud CrystalDiskMark testing

The results of the test show that SIM-Cloud performs better than Amazon’s cloud.

Which is cheaper, AWS or SIM-Cloud?

You can calculate the base price of an AWS instance per month on the company’s website. Note that taxed are not included in the price. According to the calculator, a basic instance configuration in the «Frankfurt» availability zone will cost you $281.09 per month before taxes. The cloud IaaS price calculator shows the cost of renting SIM-Cloud per month. The configuration used during the testing will cost you EUR 185.00. This way, we can conclude that the German public cloud is significantly more affordable than AWS.

Cloud Server

Cloud server

Learn more about the highly available public SIM-Cloud

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What’s the main difference between SIM-Networks & Amazon?

The results of the testing show that SIM-Cloud can be considered an AWS alternative in terms of performance. SIM-Cloud’s RAM was outperformed by AWS; however, the CPU cores and the SSD drives of SIM-Cloud showed better results. The SIM-Networks cloud also turned out to be more affordable than the opponent’s product.

It is important to note that AWS and SIM-Cloud are solutions for different tasks. AWS includes a variety of cloud services that cover specific needs: raw computing power, data storage, analytics and precise computing, IoT, video games, virtual and extended reality, Big Data processing, machine learning, robotics and many other services.

Amazon offers a variety of specialized solutions. This will be convenient for a company the tasks of which can be solved with a pre-made service package. SIM-Networks, on the other hand, specializes in individual projects and nontypical infrastructures. If the client needs a solution for specific business tasks, SIM-Networks will create an infrastructure from scratch.

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