Alibaba Cloud vs LayerStack

Alibaba
LayerStack
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We have tested 8 VPS plans from Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack. This page is a summary and a comparison of all test results for those 2 providers.


Alibaba Cloud

Alibaba Cloud was founded in 2009.
It is headquartered in China.
It offers VPS, Database, Storage and Networking hosting products.

It has datacenters in:
  • Australia
  • China
  • Germany
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Japan
  • Malaysia
  • Singapore
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom

LayerStack

LayerStack was founded in 2017.
It is headquartered in Hong Kong.
It offers VPS hosting products.

It has datacenters in:
  • China
  • Japan
  • Singapore
  • United States

Best VPS Awards

3rd Best Value July 2020

VPS Plans

Plan Name Monthly Price CPU cores Memory (GB) Disk Space (GB) Data Transfer (GB) Latest trial
Starter 1GB 1 core $4.50 1 1.0 25 2000 Mar 15 2020
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small $11.96 1 1.0 40 10000 Nov 15 2019
ecs.n4.small $13.66 1 2.0 20 0 Jun 30 2020
ecs-t5-c1m1-large $14.13 2 2.0 20 10000 Sep 07 2019
R108-HK $28.06 2 4.0 150 5000 Jul 24 2020
ecs.n4.large $28.84 2 4.0 40 0 Jun 17 2019
ecs.c5.large $37.52 2 4.0 40 1000 May 07 2020
ecs.g6.large $43.19 2 8.0 0 0 Jan 15 2020

Performance Grades

To summarize the performance of each VPS plan, we generated grades based on the various tests that were run: web, sysbench, endurance and remote timing tests. Each grade focuses on one aspect of the VPS speed or stability (cpu, disk IO, network IO...) and is made of one or more metrics measured during the tests.

Grades are evenly distributed between A and F. A is best, F is worst.

Follow the letter links to find the test results backing the grade.

How are grades calculated?

Plan Name Web Perf Raw CPU Power Perf Stability Disk IO Perf Network Perf
Starter 1GB 1 core
$4.50
E E E D F
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small
$11.96
D E D D F
ecs.n4.small
$13.66
E E D E F
ecs-t5-c1m1-large
$14.13
B C E D E
R108-HK
$28.06
B C C C B
ecs.n4.large
$28.84
B C B E E
ecs.c5.large
$37.52
C C B E F
ecs.g6.large
$43.19
B B B D F
Show Price Weighted Grades   

VPS Instance Provisioning Time

This is the average time it took to create an instance for Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack from instance order to instance accepting connections.

All VPS provisioning times

Alibaba Cloud LayerStack
Number of instance creations in sample 9 1
Provisioning time in seconds 55s 40s

In Depth...

The grades above are based on the following test results.


Web Response Times

We ran a database intensive web application with ~100,000 hits per day for several days on cloud servers from Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack. This is the average response time measured locally on the VPS for each plan we tested.



Local Response Time per Plan

Lower is better

Plan Average response time
Alibaba
ecs.g6.large 46.5ms
ecs.c5.large 58.5ms
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 62.1ms
Starter 1GB 1 core 67.5ms
ecs.n4.small 74.6ms
LayerStack
R108-HK 45.9ms

During the Web Test, we collect response time metrics, CPU metrics and database performance metrics. All of those are measured locally on the VPS running the web server. All metrics can be compared on the Web Performance Comparison page.


Sysbench CPU Performance

We ran the full suite of Sysbench tests on VPS plans of Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack. These are the Sysbench CPU test results:



Rate of operations

Higher is better

Plan Operations per second
Alibaba
Starter 1GB 1 core 289.8
ecs.n4.small 319.7
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 326.7
ecs.c5.large 554.2
ecs-t5-c1m1-large 654.2
ecs.g6.large 663.7
ecs.n4.large 759.2
LayerStack
R108-HK 1201.4

Sysbench Disk IO Performance

We ran the full suite of Sysbench tests on VPS plans of Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack. These are the Sysbench Disk IO Random Read test results:



Rate of operations

Higher is better

Plan MiB per second
Alibaba
ecs-t5-c1m1-large 8.3
ecs.n4.small 8.6
Starter 1GB 1 core 10.3
ecs.c5.large 10.9
ecs.n4.large 11.2
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 12.1
ecs.g6.large 18.0
LayerStack
R108-HK 92.0

Sysbench test results are also available for random disk IO tests, sequential disk IO tests and memory tests.

Review and compare all Sysbench numbers on the Sysbench Comparison page for Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack.


Network Transfers

We have performed large file transfers from the Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack VPS and we measured the speed of downloads and uploads.

The transfers involve multiple files, 10 threads and last for at least 10 seconds at maximum speed. The transfers are repeated 3 times from different servers and only the fastest transfer is reported here.


Download Speed per Plan

Higher is better

Plan Network Download Speed
Alibaba
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 100.5Mbps
ecs-t5-c1m1-large 104.7Mbps
ecs.n4.small 105.9Mbps
ecs.c5.large 106.8Mbps
Starter 1GB 1 core 108.8Mbps
ecs.n4.large 110.6Mbps
ecs.g6.large 111.0Mbps
LayerStack
R108-HK 1681.8Mbps

Network Transfers measurements including download and upload speeds can be compared for Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack on the Network Transfers Comparison page.


Sustained CPU Endurance Tests

We pushed the CPU of those VPS plans hard for 24 hours straight.

This test shows how fast the VPS can go for long periods of time, how stable the performance is and it also gives clues on how overallocated the VPSs may be.


Average number of operations per hour

Higher is better

Plan Average ops/hour
Alibaba
Starter 1GB 1 core 2293.4
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 2511.6
ecs.n4.small 3082.4
ecs.n4.large 3189.7
ecs-t5-c1m1-large 3721.1
ecs.c5.large 4959.2
ecs.g6.large 5655.6
LayerStack
R108-HK 2850.8

Review and compare endurance test results for Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack on the Sustained CPU Endurance Comparison page.


Remote Timings

During the entire duration of the web performance test, we collected web response times from 5 different locations in the world. The chart below reports the connection establishment time + TLS handshake latency from all 5 locations. (That excludes the time spent on the server that is already measured in web response times above and it also excludes the DNS resolution time since it is not dependent on the provider).


Remote Latency per Plan

Lower is better

Plan Average remote request duration
Alibaba
ecs.t5-lc1m1.small 342.6ms
ecs-t5-c1m1-large 350.8ms
Starter 1GB 1 core 353.0ms
ecs.c5.large 353.8ms
ecs.g6.large 356.4ms
ecs.n4.large 495.6ms

Detailed remote timings measurements including connection time, TLS handshake time, and response time can be compared for Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack on the Remote Timings Comparison page.


Features and Usability

Features not included in the VPS price of the plan will be marked as missing but they may be available for the fee.

Alibaba Cloud Review LayerStack Review
Hourly Billing  Mixed No
DDOS Protection  Yes No
Backups  Yes No
Control Panel  Custom Custom
SSH Keys Setup  Yes Yes
Total Number of Datacenters  21 4
Number of Datacenter Continents  4 2
Compare more Alibaba Cloud and LayerStack Features

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