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Showing posts from August, 2016

Elastic Load Balancing in AWS

Elastic Load Balancing is a service which allows for the automatic distribution of incoming traffic across multiple Amazon EC2 instances.These EC2 instances should be in separate availability zones in a particular region.This enables applications to achieve fault tolerance and high availability if they are designed so that they can be accessed from multiple server instances. Sometimes an application may not need to be designed as such if they both point to the same data source. More often than not, these applications can be run from anywhere. They are good candidates to be put behind the Elastic Load Balancing service.It is up to the system or cloud administrator to ensure that identical versions of the application exist across all servers that are going to be load balanced.

The Elastic Load Balancing service can be integrated with Auto Scaling in AWS. As more load is put on your application servers, additional EC2 instances can be launched by Auto Scaling.Once the load dissipates. EC…

AWS Fault Tolerance and High Availability

Amazon Web Services provides the services and infrastructure to build highly available and fault tolerant environments in the cloud. However, like most clouds, you have to design your systems for fault tolerance and high availability by utilizing the services offered by AWS.

Some AWS services have already been designed by Amazon to be highly available and fault tolerant. These include Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), Amazon Simple DB, Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS), and Amazon Elastic Load Balancing (ELB).

Most companies who build their infrastucture in AWS will use Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS) for their virtual servers (EC2 instances), and disk storage for their servers (EBS volumes). These virtual servers live on physical hosts, and these EBS volumes live on physical disks. Physical hosts have power supplies, motherboards, and RAM which can and will die. Physical disks can and will fail.

While AWS would have set up RAID for their driv…

Create a VPC Using AWS CloudFormation

AWS CloudFormation - Create a VPC Using AWS CloudFormation

AWS CloudFormation allows you to treat Infrastructure as Code.
Your infrastructure can be created through the use of scripting.

I have written a tutorial on how to create a VPC using AWS CloudFormation.

Here is the link to it :

http://hubpages.com/_2482n6o6s3pqm/technology/Setup-an-AWS-Virtual-Private-Cloud-with-AWS-CloudFormation

AWS Trusted Advisor

Trusted Advisor is an AWS service which is used to analyse your AWS environment and report on ways to reduce cost, increase performance, and improve security and fault tolerance.

It is accessed via the AWS Management Console under the Management Tools section.

If you have just the default basic support plan for your AWS account, it doesn't tell you much. However, it is better than nothing.

It gives you access to 4 core Trusted Advisor checks, which are the Service Limits check under Performance, Security Groups - Specific Ports Unrestricted
, MFA on Root Account, and IAM Use checks under Security.

You have to upgrade your support level to Business or Enterprise to get access to all Trusted Advisor checks. The Developer plan (one step up from basic) also only allows access to the 4 core Trusted Advisor checks.

More information on Trusted Advisor is here :

https://aws.amazon.com/premiumsupport/trustedadvisor/

Auto Scaling in AWS

Auto Scaling
Auto Scaling is a feature in AWS for scaling up or scaling down the number of Amazon EC2 instances.

The Auto Scaling feature can be accessed and configured via the AWS Management Console from the EC2 service page. Auto Scaling can also be configured via the AWS Command Line Interfaces (CLI) or APIs.

Auto Scaling is enabled by CloudWatch and does not carry additional fees. However, there are fees applied to EC2 instance usage and CloudWatch detailed monitoring.

The scenario in which you can use Auto Scaling properly is in which you have an application that can be load balanced. These applications must be able to be dynamically installed or updated after an EC2 instance launch. This would require some sort of scripting e.g. you can use PowerShell Desired State Configuration if you are familiar with it.

You can create your own AMIs (Amazon Machine Image) for every version of your application release, and these AMIs can be used to launch new EC2 instances. In this way, little…

Amazon CloudWatch

Amazon CloudWatch
CloudWatch is an AWS service which lets you monitor the performance and availability of your AWS resources. The resources include Amazon EC2 instances, Amazon DynamoDB tables, Amazon RDS DB instances, as well as custom metrics and logs generated by your own applications and services. It can also be used to monitor the billing costs.

CloudWatch can be used to collect and track metrics, collect and monitor logs, set alarms and automatically react to changes in your AWS resources.

No additional software is required for CloudWatch monitoring. However, when you launch a new EC2 instance, you have a choice of enabling detailed monitoring. Detailed monitoring has an additional charge while non-detailed monitoring is free and enabled by default. However, you can choose to enable or disable detailed monitoring at any time and only pay for what you use. This can come in handy if you want more granularity while you are troubleshooting issues with your applications running on yo…

AWS Certified SysOps Administrator - Associate Level

These next set of blogs about the AWS Certified SysOps Administrator - Associate Level is by no means an authority on what you need to know in order to pass the exam.

I will be trying to go for the certification and these next set of blogs in this section will be about any interesting things that I may have picked up along the way.

Currently, what you need to know are listed in the following link from AWS :

https://awstrainingandcertification.s3.amazonaws.com/production/AWS_certified_sysops_associate_blueprint.pdf

Content Limits

1 Domain 1.0: Monitoring and Metrics
1.1 Demonstrate ability to monitor availability and performance
1.2 Demonstrate ability to monitor and manage billing and cost optimization processes

2 Domain 2.0: High Availability
2.1 Implement scalability and elasticity based on scenario
2.2 Ensure level of fault tolerance based on business needs

3 Domain 3.0: Analysis
3.1 Optimize the environment to ensure maximum performance
3.2 Identify performance bottlenecks and impleme…