Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) is a public cloud computing platform.

As with most cloud service providers, OCI offers a pay-as-you-use pricing policy , including a number of free services.

This guide is to help you get started with compute services , using Arm-based Ampere processors. This is a general-purpose compute platform, essentially your own personal computer in the cloud.

Detailed instructions are available in the Oracle documentation .

Create an account

Before you start, creating an account. For a personal account, click on Sign in to Oracle Cloud , and follow the on-screen instructions to log in or register as a new user. You will get immediate access to OCI Cloud Free Tier services.

If using an organization’s account, you will likely need to consult with your internal administrator.

Once logged in, you will be presented with the Oracle Cloud console .

Create compartment

If this is your first time logging in, it is recommended to create a compartment to store your compute instances. Search for Compartments or navigate to Identity & Security > Compartments from the menu.

Image Alt Text:oci1 Navigate to the `Compartments` page

Use the Create Compartment button to start configuring your compartment.

Image Alt Text:oci2 Click on 'Create Compartment'

Create a compartment with a meaningful name (and optional description), for example Ampere_A1_instances. When finished, click Create Compartment. Full details on using compartments are described in the Oracle documentation .

Image Alt Text:oci3 Create a name and description for the compartment

Create your compute instance

Search for Instances or navigate the menu to Compute > Instances.

Image Alt Text:alt-text Navigate to the 'Instances' page

Use the Create Instance button to get to the Create compute instance dialog.

Image Alt Text:alt-text Click on 'Create instance'

Name your instance

Give your instance a meaningful, but arbitrary, name. This is particularly useful when creating multiple instances. Select the compartment you created above to be the location for this instance.

Image Alt Text:oci6 Specify a name for the instance and select your compartment


These settings are generally left as default. See the Oracle documentation for a full description.

Image Alt Text:oci7 Choose availability domain placement

Select instance image and shape

Click the Edit button to configure which OS image and instance shape you will use.

Image Alt Text:oci8 Click 'Edit' to change the image and shape

Click Change image to select the operating system image.

Image Alt Text:oci9 Click `Change image'

Several images are available from the marketplace , but for now, select a standard image, such as Canonical Ubuntu 22.04 from the list of Platform images. Click Select image to confirm.

Image Alt Text:oci10 Choose a standard image

Click Change shape, to select the instance type and processor series.

Image Alt Text:oci11 Click `Change shape'

Select the Ampere Arm-based processor shape series. Select the Shape name (for example VM.Standard.A1.Flex), and use slider to select the number of processors you wish to use. At the time of writing, the free tier allows up to 4 Ampere processors (across all instances) to be used. Click Select shape to confirm.

Image Alt Text:oci12 Choose an Ampere Arm-based processor shape


These settings can likely be left as default. Ensure that a public IP address is assigned so that you can access the instance.

Image Alt Text:oci13 Configure network settings if necessary

Add SSH keys

To be able to access the instance, you must use a key pair . Use the dialog to generate a new key pair and download the private key to your local machine, or you can upload an existing public key if you have one.

Note that if you do not generate a key and have access to the private key, you will not be able to connect to the instance.

Image Alt Text:oci14 Create or upload a key pair

Boot volume and other advanced options

These can likely be left as default. See the Oracle documentation for settings information if necessary.

Image Alt Text:oci15 Configure boot volume and advanced options if necessary

Launch instance

When all options are set, click Create to get started.

Image Alt Text:oci16 Create the VM instance

Your compute instance will be created and be available after initialization, when status is shown as RUNNING. Note the Public IP address and Username of your instance as you will need these to connect to your instance.

Image Alt Text:oci17 Confirm the instance is running and note instance details

Connect to your instance

You can connect to the instance with your preferred SSH client. For example, if using ubuntu image:


            ssh -i <private_key> ubuntu@<public_ip_address>

Replace <private_key> with the private key on your local machine and <public_ip_address> with the public IP of the target VM.

Terminal applications such as PuTTY , MobaXterm and similar can be used.

Detailed instructions are given in the Oracle documentation .

Once connected, you are now ready to use your instance.

Explore your instance

Run uname

Use the uname utility to verify that you are using an Arm-based server. For example:


            uname -m

will identify the host machine as aarch64.

Run hello world

Install the gcc compiler. Assuming you are using Ubuntu, use the following commands. If not, refer to the GNU compiler install guide :


            sudo apt-get update
sudo apt install -y gcc

Using a text editor of your choice, create a file named hello.c with the contents below:


            #include <stdio.h>
int main(){
    printf("hello world\n");
    return 0;

Build and run the application:


            gcc hello.c -o hello

The output is shown below:


        hello world