What is meant by “virtual core” in Amazon EC2?

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Amazon EC2
Cloud Computing
I understand that in Amazon EC2, a small standard instance consists of "1.7 GB of memory, 1 EC2 Compute Unit (1 virtual core with 1 EC2 Compute Unit), 160 GB of local instance storage, 32-bit or 64-bit platform." But here's what my question comes in: Do I get access to the entire physical CPU core? Am I sharing a core with other instances? I'm just having a on of trouble understanding the virtual core.

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  • carlosdl
    That is a little complicated, and I don't think you can find a definition on Amazon's help pages, but I don't think it means that you have a physical core at your disposal.

    I think it is more important the number of compute units your instance has assigned.

    The number of virtual cores would just be related to how much parallel processing you can have.
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