The Scot, taking his recent tally to 23 wins in 24 matches, remained on course to collect his third title in as many weeks with victory in an hour and 25 minutes.
Murray broke twice to take the first set and quickly took charge in the next with the world number 124 unable to pressurise the defending champion's serve.
He successfully averted Ebden's sole break point in the match at 4-2 before moving to match point in the next, taking advantage to put away a short ball and book a semi-final date with Kei Nishikori, of Japan.
"Sometimes it happens in matches where you don't necessarily feel that comfortable," said Murray. "It's the first time I've played outdoors (this week) and it's changed the conditions a lot - I felt a little tentative.
"I served very well for the most part, I didn't give him many opportunities on my serve and created a lot of chances on his so I can't be too disappointed.
"I think if I was a little bit looser I could have got a few more breaks."
Regarding a semi-final clash with Nishikori, Murray added: "Tough match - it's the best tournament of his life. He was a little nervous earlier in the week but he's playing with a lot of confidence this week.
"He had a great win against (Jo-Wilfried) Tsonga and it will definitely be a tough match."
Nishikori broke once in the first set and three times in the second against Alexandre Dolgopolov, withstanding nine aces from the Ukrainian and saving six of seven break points as he won 6-4 6-3.
US-based Nishikori said it was special to reach his first Masters semi-final in Asia.
"I feel like home here. It means a lot to play semis here.... I'm really excited now," said Nishikori, who shocked fourth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga earlier in the week.
David Ferrer will take on fellow Spaniard Feliciano Lopez in the second semi-final after the pair gained contrasting wins on Friday.
Ferrer required a final set tie-break to overcome American Andy Roddick 7-6 2-6 7-6, while Lopez eased past Rafael Nadal's conqueror Florian Mayer 6-2 6-4.
After a first set that went with serve, Roddick drew first blood when he clinched the tie-break but the third seed hit back strongly in the second set to break the big-serving American twice.
Tenth seed Roddick was match point down in the 10th game of the deciding set but kept his nerve to level at 5-5 and force a tie-break.
It initially went with serve but Ferrer secured two crucial mini-breaks and sealed the win after more than two-and-a-half hours.
"I feel confident. This is very important because some moments I didn't play really well. This tournament, you know, in important moments I served really well," said Ferrer.