AWS – Adding extra EBS volume to your EC2 instance

When you boot an Amazon Linux EC2 instance it boots with a 8GB EBS volume. If you need more space you need to add additional drives. For this you need to use EBS volumes.

Before you start the process please have look at the current partition blocks loaded in your server. You can do so using the contents of partition file.

Now you goto EBS volume manager in AWS console and create a new volume, make sure the zone is the same in which your EC2 instance is running.

Once the volume is created you need to attach this to an instance. You can right click on the created volume and say attach. Select the instance then device will populate automatically, you can either leave it or change if you need specific device name.

Now check the partition file again. You can see a new device being added.

The volume attached is not ready for use. It is like a new hard disk. You need to partition and format the same. In our case I am going to use the full disk as one partition. So I am going to skip the fdisk setup and jumping right into formatting the volume.

The format process can take few seconds just be patient. The drive is ready to use, and to do the same we need mount it.

If you wish this device to mount automatically when you reboot the server make sure you add this to your fstab file.

When I started which Amazon Cloud, I found these things in a hard way, hope this can help someone 🙂


  1. Thank you for a brilliant guide!

    Please consider changing defaults to noatime,nodiratime in your fstab example as the EBS volume is slow enough as it is.