Configure a Windows Instance on Alibaba Cloud 

Configure Windows Instance on Alibaba Cloud
This tutorial focuses on creating and managing Windows instances in the Elastic Compute Service (ECS) console of Alibaba Cloud. 

Alibaba Cloud provides a comprehensive set of global cloud computing services to power Alibaba’s eCommerce ecosystem and other online businesses. Since 2009, Alibaba Cloud has been one of the leading providers in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cloud computing. Alibaba Cloud offers cloud computing resources and services to thousands of government organizations, developers, and enterprises in more than 200 countries and regions.


This tutorial will walk through creating and managing Windows instances in the Elastic Compute Service (ECS) console. This tutorial configures Internet Information Services (IIS) for an ecs.g6.large instance that runs the Windows Server 2016 operating system.


  • First, log in to Alibaba Cloud and create an account.
  • Once the Alibaba Cloud account is created, the system directs the user to add a payment method. Users can add a credit card or PayPal account as payment methods. 
  • After that, users need to complete real-name verification to purchase ECS instances in the mainland China Region. 
  • Alibaba Cloud offers a default Virtual Private Cloud. If they do not want to use the default VPC, users can create a Virtual Private Cloud and a vSwitch in the region where they want to create an ECS instance.
  • Alibaba Cloud also offers a default security group with its account. If users do not want to use the default security group, they can create a security group in the region where they want to create an ECS instance.


Step 1: Create an ECS Instance
  • Login to Alibaba Cloud and go to the Custom Launch tab in the ECS console.
  • In the first four steps of the instance creation wizard, complete the instance configurations.
  • We are going to use the following configurations in this tutorial. Users can accept the default settings for parameters that are not mentioned in this tutorial.


Basic ConfigurationsBilling MethodPay-as-you-goThe pay-as-you-go billing method allows more flexible operations.
RegionRegion: China (Hangzhou)

Zone: Random

Once the instance is created, users cannot change the zone or region.
Instance TypeFamily: General Purpose Type g6

Instance Type: ecs.g6.large

Available instance types are determined by the region that the user selects and the region’s resource inventory.

Type: Public Image

Version: Windows Server 2016 Datacenter 64-bit

After the instance is created, the application data of the image and the operating system is copied to the system disk.
Networking Virtual Private CloudDefault (vpc-bp1opxu1zkhn00g******)Select an existing VPC.
Public IP AddressAssign Public IPv4 AddressThe system can allocate a public IPv4 address if the user selects the Assign Public IP Address option.
Bandwidth BillingPay-by-trafficIn pay-by-traffic mode, the instance is billed for data transfer over the Internet based on the amount of transferred data.
Peak Bandwidth2 Mbps
Security GroupDefault (sg-bp1bhjjsoiyx44hd****)
Rules: Choose ICMP, SSH 22, RDP 3389, HTTP 80, and HTTPS 443.
Select an existing security group.
System ConfigurationsLogin CredentialsPasswordUser must set a password for remote connection and logon to the ECS instance.
Instance NameEcsQuickStart


In this tutorial, EcsQuickStart is used as the instance name.
Grouping TagsECS:DocumentationIf multiple instances are created, we recommend that the users add tags to facilitate management.


  • Click the Next: Preview button. Confirm the configurations in the Configurations Selected section or click the icon to modify the configurations in the Preview step.


Configure Windows Instance on Alibaba Cloud 1



  • Next, click Save as Launch Template. In the Save as Launch Template dialogue box, set a name and version description for the template. This step is optional.
  • After that, read and agree on ECS Terms of Service
  • Finally, click the Create Instance button.
  • After the creation, a message page opens and on that page, click Console to view the creation progress on the Instances page. If the instance state is running, that means that the ECS instance is created. Copy the public IP address of the instance to use when the user connects to the ECS instance.


Step 2: Add Security Group Rules

If the user didn’t add rules to the default security group or added the instance to a new security group when they created the instance, then perform the following steps:

  • First, click on the instance ID to go to the instance details page.
  • On that page, click Security Groups. Users can click on the ID of a security group to open its detail page.
  • Next, click the Inbound tab in the Access Rule section.
  • Click Quick Add to add security group rules as defined in the below table. Users can accept the default settings for parameters that are not mentioned in this tutorial.


ActionPort RangeAuthorization Object
AllowRDP 3389

SSH 22




  • Finally, click the OK button.


Step 3: Connect to the ECS Instance 
  • Return to the Instances page and find the EcsQuickStart instance.
  • In the Actions column, select Connect.
  • In the Enter VNC Password dialogue box, click the Modify VNC Password option.
  • Next, modify the Password. In the Enter VNC Password dialogue box, enter the new Password and click OK.
  • In the upper-left corner of the VNC page, select Send Remote Call and choose CTRL+ALT+DELETE from the drop-down.


Configure Windows Instance on Alibaba Cloud 2


  •  After that, go to the login page of the Windows instance and configure the login credentials.


Step 4: Configure Internet Information Services (IIS) 
  • First, open Command Prompt and enter powershell to switch to PowerShell.
  • Next, execute the following command to install IIS and the management tools.


Install-WindowsFeature -name Web-Server -IncludeAllSubFeature -IncludeManagementTools


  • After the installation, open a web page in the current browser. Enter the public IP address of the instance in the address bar, and press the Enter key.


http://<Public IP address of the instance>



Step 5: View Bills
  • In the top navigation bar, go to Expenses >> User Center.
  • In the left-side navigation panel, select Spending Summary >> Spending Summary. On the Bills page, click the Details tab.
  • Select the instance name from the list (EcsQuickStart) and press ENTER to start the search.



This tutorial presents the steps to create and manage Windows instances in the Elastic Compute Service (ECS) console of Alibaba Cloud. Hope this tutorial was useful, and do reach out to us if you have any query or suggestions. 

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