Running a Large Language Model Chatbot on your AWS server with a friendly web interface

By Gabriel, 31 Aug 2023 , updated 02 Sep 2023

Why and How to run your own Large language model on your traditional cloud provider like AWS.

oobabooga webui screenshot

Chat with oobabooga text-generation-webui using Meta’s Llama 2 13B-chat model

Before you start

Why running your own LLM?

Large Language Model (LLM) tools like chatGPT and Github Copilot can increase productivity for developers. At the same time they are third-party hosted and this has raised some concerns about the usage of our sensitive data in my company if we were to generalise the usage of those tools. In Software development one important concern is: will the details of our implementation (and potential vulnerabilities) leak into the response to other users of those tools. (ChatGPT and Github Copilot state that they may include user submitted data to improve the product)

In the other hand some ChatGPT~equivalent LLM have been released, a well known one is LLaMA by Facebook. And there is countless examples on Internet of people running them efficiently on their personal computer, that is far from the expensive and complex GPU-powered servers on Microsoft Azure used to run ChatGPT.

Pausing here for a second to insist on that important point, well known from subject-matter experts but maybe not from other people even IT worker: it IS possible to run locally, that is in complete isolation, on a big but affordable machine a LLM almost as-good-as the current ChatGPT. One would just have to download for free the “weights” of a model and the software to run it (the inference engine), give it a “prompt” and execute it.

How this post is different from the existing guides to run LLM locally?

Most of the examples or running your own LLM I have seen out were from developer running it on their own (beefy) machine. Here I want to describe how to run it on some ordinary cloud provider AWS (but can be a competitor) and how to add a friendly web interface on it so it can be shared with a private group of users (company, association, school).

Choose a model: what are the good ones?

There are a lot of openly available models out there now, keeping up with all of them is now impossible. I am more familiarised myself with the LLaMA-derivated models:

The good things is that once you have that architecture to run your own LLM you can switch from one to another easily and pick the one that offer the best compromise for you. More details below on you can make that work here.

What is the infrastructure required?

Traditionally the inference engine required for those LLM run on GPU-machine, not CPU-machine, ie not our most commonly available computer at home or even in the cloud to run websites. Loads of massive matrix multiplications are executed in the neural network that constitute the engine. GPU have many more (smaller) cores than CPU hence perform better. A breakthrough came from the community of open source in March when Georgi Gerganov released llama.cpp: it is a port of a GPU-inference engine to CPU architecture with quantization technique (GGML) along the way to reduce the amount of computation required and make it practical. His attempt has been since further improved by others. It has open-up the space for more applications of LLM, and it is the approach I am describing in that post.

Based on other people experiences, willing to run a 13B model practically and mindful of the renting cost! I have choose a m5.2xlarge EC2 instance - 8 cores, 32GB RAM - Spot price ~0.16 USD / hour

It is possible as well to run your own LLM staying on GPU-machine at AWS (SageMaker) but that is not the goal here.

Where to download the resources?

Now let’s get started!

The work

Prerequisites: Have an AWS account and be familiarised with AWS console and the process of EC2 instances creation (including attaching related resources like EBS storage), using ssh

  1. Create an EBS of 200GB (gp3): vicuna-13b-ggml-4bit model is ~10Gb. if adding other models, I thought that 100GB (default) was too small. 200 should work too. Don’t want to go too big either because i may leave that EBS live for a couple of weeks (unlike the EC2 instance that I will kill when not experimenting) - 200 GB * 0.096/GB-month ~ 20 USD / Month
  2. Create EC2 instance m5.2xlarge
  3. attach the EBS volume to the instance
  4. ssh into the instance
  5. format and mount the attached volume: see aws guide
  6. Install stuff:
  7. download models in a shared folder. You only need one to begin with, but here are the links of the popular one I tried and are interesting.
  8. install text-generation-webui
  9. subsequent launch

Then browse the URL: http://[YOUR-INSTANCE-IP]:7860 !

Examples of chat:

Prompt: “Implement a regular expression in Python to validate an email address.”

llama-13b.ggmlv3.q4_K_M.bin Response

The simplest regex is this one: [a-zA-Z0-9]+@[a-z]{2,4}
We can write a simple function that does the validation of emails for us and we will use it later on when we create our program to send/receive emails. We can do something like this (this is written in Python):

def validateEmail(emailAddress: str) -> bool:
emailPattern = re.compile("[a-zA-Z0-9]+@[a-z]{2,4}")
matched = emailPattern.match(emailAddress)
if not matched: return False # if the pattern did not match
return True # everything is fine!

The function will return a Boolean value depending on whether it matches with our pattern or not. If we do this validation before sending an email, we can be sure that there won’t be any errors in your emails and you don't have to [truncated]

vicuna-13b-v1.3.0.ggmlv3.q4_K_M.bin Response

import re

def validate_email(email):
    # Regular expression pattern for validating email addresses
    regex = r"^[a-zA-Z0-9._%+-]+@[a-zA-Z0-9.-]+\.[a-zA-Z]{2,}$"

    # Check if the input is a string and not empty
    if type(email) != str or email == "":
        return False

    # Use re.match() to match the pattern in the input string
    match = re.match(regex, email)

    # Return True if the email address is valid (i.e., the match object is not None)
    return match is not None


You can easily change the model if a new one is getting very popular or if you find one that meet well your requirements. The web admin allow you to change a lot of settings that will modify the way to run the model and will result in different response for the same prompt (longer response, more precise, longer to produce…). I’m not familiar with those.


After I completed the steps above to reach this prototype, I applied some time and effort to productionise it, making it easier for me to repeat the process. This post is already a bit long but I can share more later or upon request. Things like:


Running a model is not very difficult nowadays thanks to the work and open source release of many contributors. Models do improve continuously (see difference above between the “deconstructed” response from llama-13b and the real code produced by vicuna-13b. I have experienced myself several of those tools as an assistant while coding for several months now and it really increase the productivity. Now it is not clear to me yet what other every-day applications one can make of it (there is a lot of hype as well in the space) But I’m excited about the future usages that people will find.