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Have You Used Amazon Web Services Yet?


AWS, Amazon Web Services was launched in year 2006. It provides computing resources and different services like storage, database, analytics, application and deployment services on demand in the cloud with pay-as-you-go pricing. Instead of having a server on premise, with AWS you have a server in cloud. You can log into it, configure, secure it and run it.  AWS has a global footprint with its Data-Centers in US, China, Singapore, Japan, Brazil, Germany and Ireland. AWS helps you scale globally with low IT costs. Let’s find out a few things about AWS.


#Momentum is with AWS

Every successful tech company today has thought about using Amazon Web Services or is using it. Last quarter AWS reported revenue of $3.2 billion which is up 55% year over year. The revenue was $2.08 billion a year ago. AWS has been growing at an impressive rate even when it has competitors like IBM, Database giant Oracle and Microsoft. They all have their own public clouds now. The trend of offloading computing and storage tasks to third party vendors has caught on. Small and big companies are now ready to move from on-premise and hybrid environments to AWS and its competitors. AWS provides the businesses flexibility to employ the operating systems, databases and application programs of their choice.


#AWS Has Plenty for Start-Ups

Start-ups are always in optimization mode. AWS can help you build and launch your applications easily at minimal cost. No upfront investments needed. AWS provides you pay-as-you-go model. You only pay for what you use, when you use. There are various tools like Amazon Cloud Watch available that can help you monitor the AWS cloud resources you use. Amazon Cloud Watch provides you system-wide visibility into application performance, resource utilization and operational health. Developers at small companies can just use their credit cards and start using different services. It impresses with its Free Tier option.

#AWS Free Tier


Free tier option of AWS enables you to have a hands-on experience without spending a cent. The free tier offer extends for 12 months. Once you sign up with AWS you get all these services for free and some of them like AWS Lambda, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Mobile Analytics, AWS Device Farm, AWS CodePipeline, Amazon CloudWatch and several others do not expire when the 12th month ends. To sign up you would need to provide your billing address and your credit card information. There are tools to monitor your usage. If your usage does not exceed the free tier limits, you will not be charged.

#AWS is Ambitious

AWS is strategically competing with giants in the technology sector – Oracle Databases and VMware virtualization software. “Every year one goal for most companies is to reduce spending on Oracle and VMware, and every year IT comes back and say ‘we didn’t do it’- that’s because, to reduce spending on Oracle and VMware requires risk and money,” says Dave Bartoletti, Principal Analyst for Forrester Research.

AWS has been targeting Oracle by offering Aurora, a MySQL database clone at one-tenth the cost and a database migration tool and a schema conversion tool to help move Microsoft or Oracle SQL server databases to AWS. Currently the user hates the “vendor lock-in” experience which he experiences with several companies like Oracle, VMware, IBM, Microsoft or SAP. He does not want to dedicate too much of his IT budget to one vendor. AWS wants to gain from this environment of discontent created by legacy vendors who often have complex licensing agreements and software audits that are costly.


#Auto Scaling With AWS

You can access the auto-scaling feature by signing into the AWS Management Console. You can then choose EC2 and launch configurations from the navigation pane. Auto scaling creates specific EC2 instances based on the configuration. You can then create an Auto Scaling group and specify the number of instances your group must maintain at all times. Specify the availability zone in which you want the instances launched. Auto scaling helps find impaired Amazon EC2 instances and it replaces them without your intervention. Your application gets the compute capacity you want without any disruptions. Auto scaling helps you follow the demand curve closely. When utilization of your Amazon EC2 fleet is high you can set a condition to add new Amazon EC2 instances in increments to the Auto Scaling group and when it is low, you can set a condition to remove instances in the same increments.


#AWS Provides a Secure Infrastructure

AWS is aware that security of your data in its scalable cloud infrastructure is very important to you. The infrastructure has hardware, software, networking and other facilities comprising it. The whole structure has been designed and is being managed in accordance with the best practices and standard security compliances. Along with the infrastructure AWS also is responsible for security configurations of its managed services like Amazon RDS, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Redshift, Amazon Elastic MapReduce, Amazon WorkSpaces and more.

It aligns with different IT security standards including SOC 1/SSAE 16/ ISAE 3402 (Formerly SAS 70), SOC 2, SOC 3, FISMA, DIACAP, DOD CSM Levels 1-5, ISO 9001/ ISO 27001, ITAR, FIPS 140-2 and more. It also follows industry specific standards including Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS), Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), Family Education Rights And Privacy Act (FERPA) and more. Data Centres of AWS are located in nondescript facilities. All physical access by AWS employees is logged and audited routinely. The business continuity management strategy ensures that core applications are deployed in N+1 configuration. If a data centre fails, other sites can take the load without missing a beat. Staff operators provide 24 x 7 x 365 coverage. When early warning thresholds are crossed on key operational metrics on its systems, configured alarms go off automatically.

Winding Up

For companies who do not want to spend a lot on infrastructure, AWS is a very good solution. It now caters to start-ups, developers and big enterprises too. Businesses now have a big question – do they go into the nitty-gritties of setting up a database or simply rent services from AWS. Most of them end up choosing the latter. AWS provides an agile and secure solution. AWS is currently dominating the cloud game by lowering prices and by increasing the number of cloud services for its customers. It is very easy to use AWS. We have experienced consultants who can help you build the right kind of architecture for your business needs with AWS. So if you have been thinking about hosting your software or application on AWS, talk to us. Now is the time to get more clarity. We would be glad to help you out.

Priyanka Garg

A writer, a wordsmith. Curious about the internet of everything. Interested in the cutting edge landscape of mobile apps and SAAS products. Blogs for OpenXcell - A Mobile App Development Company. Loves Jazz and Blues.