Basics of Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Amazon Web Sevices (AWS)

Life isn’t as simple today as it was before. There are tremendous amounts of data and information floating everywhere that need protection, organization and integration. Since cloud computing has emerged in the past decade, storing, accessing and processing data from developers, users and large companies have made their jobs easier. As much as cloud computing is a genius way of helping everyone in the 21st century, it is still growing and continuing to improve based on the needs of the users.

Amazon is a giant that ventured into cloud computing. It launched the Amazon Web Services (AWS) in 2006 that aimed to provide online services for websites and client-side applications. Using the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) model of cloud computing, it offers the ‘backbone’ provided to large companies who need fast and easy access to virtual machines, storage space, servers, scaling and backup. Their service lies in managing all their customer’s data.

Solutions running in the AWS cloud can get applications running faster. It also has security features that high-end companies rely on. Since Amazon partners with software giants like SAP, Oracle and Microsoft, customers can easily migrate existing enterprise software licenses to the cloud. AWS takes care of the underlying infrastructure where everything runs.

Services by AWS are provided around the world. Support services are available 24/7, so solutions may be sent to customers wherever they are. Amazon Web Services is geographically diversified into different regions. Each region has many smaller geographic areas called ‘availability zones’ to minimize impact of outages in case something goes wrong.

AWS offer services that help companies and organizations do their work faster at lower and reasonable prices. The services are billed based on usage. They help you meet your business needs better. With the different products AWS offer, IT costs are lowered and applications are scaled. The infrastructure services are divided into four general categories: compute, storage and content delivery, database and networking. Though there are a lot of products under each category, here are some that are well-known to developers.

  1. Compute
    AWS is well-known for their Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) which provides resizable compute capacity in the cloud. It aims to make web-scale computing much easier for developers. It has a simple web service interface and gives you complete control of your computing resources. This reduces the time required to obtain and boot new server instances, allowing you to scale capacity faster as the computing requirements change. Since Amazon operates under a “pay as you go” model, you only pay for the capacity you actually used. Developers choose Amazon EC2 because it provides the tools to build applications designed to resist and stay away from common scenarios where apps usually fail.
  2. Storage and Content Delivery
    Another product that is widely talked about is the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). It provides developers and IT teams with secure, durable and highly-scalable cloud storage for a variety of uses such as backup, recovery, archives, analytics, disaster recovery, cloud applications and content distribution. It also has a simple web service interface that allows you to store and retrieve any amount of data anywhere on the internet. It can be used on its own or together with other AWS services such as Amazon EC2.

    To organize the data even better, Amazon S3 offers different storage classes depending on the nature of the data you need to store. Policies are configured depending on how you want your data to be managed throughout its lifecycle in the cloud. Once these policies are set, the data will be migrated to its appropriate storage. Amazon S3 Standard is used for general purpose storage of data that are often accessed and used. Amazon S3 Standard-Infrequent Access (Standard-IA) is for old data that are less frequently accessed. Amazon Glacier is used for long-term data that need to be archived already.

  3. Database
    Amazon DynamoDB provides a scalable, low latency NoSQL database service for applications. It delivers consistent and fast performance at any scale. It is a fully managed cloud database that supports both document and key-value store models. Because of its flexible data model and reliable performance, it is best used for designing applications for mobile, web, gaming, internet of things and many more.

    Developers purchase this service based on throughput instead of storage. This service handles everything else after you have created a database table and set your throughput. Database management tasks such as the provision of hardware or software, setup and configuration, software patching, operation of a database cluster, or partitioning data as you scale is no longer a problem. In order to meet the throughput requirements as the data volumes grow and application performance demands increase, Amazon DynamoDB uses automatic partitioning and SSD technologies that can deliver faster.

  4. Networking
    An interesting product of AWS is the Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC) wherein you are given a virtual network that you can define. It is a logically isolated section of AWS where you can have complete control of the environment including a selection of your own IP address range, creation of subnets, and configuration of route tables and network gateways. You may easily customize the network configuration depending on what you want.

If you are looking to implement AWS for your organization and need help, contact us.

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One Response

  1. Proquotient says:

    This article does a great job at covering all the basics of Amazon Web Services and explaining its features and uses in detail. This will be very helpful for users who are new to AWS and students who are interested in starting a career in this field.

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