What is Amazon File Cache? Know The Amazon File Cache Service

Cloud computing has revolutionized data storage and access. However, cloud computing challenges include the need for efficient data transfer. Transferring data between the cloud and local storage can take time and effort, especially for large files. This is where file caching comes in.

File caching stores frequently accessed data on local storage, reducing data transfer between the cloud and local storage. This can significantly improve the performance of applications that rely on cloud storage, especially those that require fast access to data. In this article, we'll look at the Amazon File Cache service, including how it works and its use cases.

What is Amazon File Cache?

Announced during AWS Storage Day 2022, the updated Amazon File Cache is now generally available to AWS customers. Amazon File Cache is a hassle-free, managed caching service that processes files scattered across different AWS storage locations and on-premises environments at high data access speed.

The Amazon File Cache service expands the AWS storage service offering and enriches the capabilities of the existing AWS built-in service. It works out of the box with Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP, Amazon FSx for OpenZFS, Amazon S3 buckets, or any network file system (NFS) storage location.

amazon file cache

How Does Amazon File Cache Work?

Amazon File Cache is available across all AWS global regions. Customers can create a file cache and link it to their preferred data source within a few minutes. Amazon File Cache can be connected to one or more on-premises file systems (NFS) environments or AWS-native storage services such as Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP, Amazon FSx for OpenZFS, or Amazon S3 buckets.

As object storage, AWS S3 doesn't provide native caching or block-level file system capabilities. While some alternative methods enable this, the performance drawbacks are significant. With Amazon File Cache, customers can leverage data in Amazon S3 using their regular application workloads without having to change workflows.

Amazon File Cache loads data from on-premises or cloud storage services into the cache automatically the first time the workload accesses it. This simplifies the need to implement custom methods to duplicate data or plan the exact files needed in the cloud environment in advance. Acting as an AWS file gateway cache, data movements happen out of the box and on-demand as required by the cloud workload.

Amazon File Cache pricing is pay-as-you-go. This means customers are billed based on cache storage capacity (measured in GB per month). In addition, customers are billed for the amount of data transferred within AWS regions, Amazon services, or out of AWS.

With Amazon File Cache, accessing multiple data sources from a single, unified data access point is easier. Amazon File Cache offers sub-millisecond latency performance of millions of operations per second. With a throughput of hundreds of GB/s, this boosts workload completion times and allows you to optimize compute resources.

Benefits of Amazon File Cache

Regardless of the chosen file cache technology, Amazon File Cache's core purpose remains to make processing data at the most suitable location easier and faster. It can be used within the AWS ecosystem and infrastructure to enable temporary and highly performant data storage on-premises or within AWS. This allows cloud architects to design a more flexible solution with lower operational overhead and a superior user experience thanks to high data access speeds.

Amazon File Cache solves several technical problems architects have when designing media, finance, energy, health, and manufacturing solutions. Organizations store large datasets spread across different locations and environments and must process them quickly and efficiently.

If you're an AWS customer, introducing Amazon File Cache to your architecture brings several benefits and fulfills many use cases:

Media and compute-intensive workloads

Media compute-intensive workloads such as video and audio rendering and transcoding require fast and highly performant storage access to media files. Media files in AWS S3 buckets or on-premises locations can be available via Amazon File Cache for these temporary, costly computational workloads running on AWS Batch or EC2 instances. This enables the workload to be completed faster, reducing costs and decreasing the need to maintain multiple duplicate file copies across storage mediums.

Machine learning algorithms training

Training machine learning (ML) algorithms requires instant access to datasets, often on-premises or spread across multiple AWS S3 buckets. This data needs to be made available to the training instances, usually in AWS Sagemaker, to maximize the computational throughput and velocity of the MLOps pipeline. This decreases data engineering efforts, such as copying files, developing custom logic, and maintaining temporary, ephemeral storage volumes. This is to make datasets available for machine learning training.

Cloud burst for advanced data analytics.

This is a famous use case for organizations that store large datasets on-premises and want to leverage the cloud for business intelligence and analytics. Organizations with petabytes of on-premises data can leverage Amazon File Cache to automatically cache only the subsets needed to execute data transformations and advanced analytics using modern cloud services such as AWS Elastic Map Reduce and AWS Glue.

amazon file cache

Cloud Volume Edge Cache Caching Solution

Enterprise customers understand the importance of controlling their organization's data while ensuring its availability and protection. Managing distributed storage can be a headache. However, CodeSuite makes it easier to centralize data in the public cloud while getting enterprise-grade scalability and performance.

This makes it easier to manage, plan, act, and avoid disruptions caused by distributed storage. Built-in enterprise-grade data protection and out-of-the-box managed capabilities ensure that data is available to you and your end-users in the most cost-effective and operationally efficient manner.


File caching is an effective solution to improve cloud storage applications' performance. Amazon File Cache accelerates access to frequently accessed data. By utilizing Amazon File Cache within the AWS ecosystem, organizations can improve application performance, reduce data transfer costs, and ensure that services such as AWS EMR, Glue, and Sagemaker, among many other Amazon services, have fast and efficient access to data.

Organizations that require an enterprise-grade service capable of fulfilling more advanced and complex use cases, such as integrating with multiple cloud providers, should consider NetApp Cloud Volumes Edge Cache.

CodeSuite provides a scalable, efficient, and cost-effective file caching solution for consolidating and centralizing data in the public cloud while ensuring data protection, efficient collaboration, and business continuity. 

It's an excellent solution for storage administrators and AWS specialists who need to manage distributed storage quickly and cost-effectively.