What is Amazon AWS? and the benefits of working with it

Luis Barral
Luis Barral
February 16, 2023
AWS
AWS Benefits
Business Solutions
What is Amazon AWS? and the benefits of working with it

Why Cloud Infrastructure AWS is the best option for you business

As businesses increasingly adopt cloud computing, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has emerged as a popular platform for managing their infrastructure. However, as the size and complexity of an AWS deployment grows, it becomes more difficult to maintain control over the environment. In this article, we will explore the challenges associated with managing large AWS infrastructures and discuss strategies for regaining control.

As an AWS infrastructure grows, there are several challenges that can arise, including:


aws services


  • Cost Management: As usage increases, it becomes harder to keep track of expenses and prevent unexpected costs, leading to overspending and billing surprises.

  • Resource Management: Managing instances, storage, and other resources becomes more complex as the number of resources increases, leading to underutilized or unmonitored resources.

  • Security: The larger the infrastructure, the greater the attack surface and risk of security breaches, making it essential to implement strong security measures and continuously monitor for vulnerabilities.

  • Performance: The more applications and workloads running on an infrastructure, the greater the risk of performance issues due to resource contention, leading to slower application response times and potential downtime.

  • Governance: Maintaining control over a growing AWS infrastructure requires establishing and enforcing governance policies, including access controls, compliance, and standards.

  • Complexity: As the number of services and interdependencies between them increase, it can become more challenging to troubleshoot issues and maintain visibility into the environment.

  • Scalability: While AWS is designed to scale, scaling a complex infrastructure requires careful planning to avoid bottlenecks and ensure optimal performance.

  • Configuration Management: As more resources are added and configurations change, it can be difficult to manage and maintain consistency across the infrastructure, leading to configuration drift and potential security vulnerabilities.

Fortunately, AWS provides a wide range of tools and techniques to help manage the challenges that come with a growing infrastructure. From cost optimization tools like AWS Cost Explorer and AWS Budgets to security and compliance services like AWS Security Hub and AWS Config, there are many resources available to help businesses maintain control over their environment. Additionally, using best practices like infrastructure as code, continuous integration and deployment, and monitoring and logging can help prevent issues and reduce downtime. By planning ahead and leveraging these tools and techniques, businesses can ensure a healthy and reliable infrastructure that can scale as needed while providing high-quality service to customers.

Cost Management & Resource Management



aws customers

AWS offers a lot of different tools to keep track of how cost evolved over the time. This is really useful if we want to build and maintain modern and scalable applications while keeping an eye on how much money we are spending monthly and using that data to find savings without losing performance.

Before doing anything, we need a clear picture about the costs of AWS services you are consuming. The perfect way to do that is using AWS Cost Explorer.

This tool provides multiple reports to help you to identify which account, service or specific resource is a top consumer. Once it’s clearly defined where the money is going, it is time to apply some strategies to save money without hurting performance.

Choose the right pricing models

aws account

One of the biggest mistakes on AWS is using the wrong pricing models, which usually leads to paying more money for the same items. Implementing a few practices will allow you to pay for your resources in the most cost-effective way that suits your organization’s needs.

The following are the most common pricing models available:

  • On-Demand Instances
  • Spot Instances
  • Commitment discounts - Savings Plans
  • Commitment discounts - Reserved Instances/Capacity
  • Geographic selection
  • Third-party agreements and pricing


Match Capacity with Demand


aws cloud


It’s really common to see applications with over-provisioned resources (Too much CPU, memory, bandwidth, etc) just because it meets with the performance requirements of the organization workload, leading to high cost.

EC2 instances and Relational Databases are one the primary resources that usually affect directly on monthly bills. A few strategies could help this issue:

  • Identify EC2 instances with low-utilization and reduce cost by stopping or rightsizing. AWS Cost Explorer Resource Optimization will give you a report of these instances that are either idle or have low utilization.
  • Based on the above information AWS Instance Scheduler will help to stop or initiate instances automatically (e.g shut down development servers on weekends) 
  • Identify Amazon RDS with low utilization. RDS Idle DB instances check it’s a really good tool to identify DB instances with low or not connections at all. 

AWS Budgets


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Having a well defined budget is a good practice to keep infrastructure costs controlled. AWS budgets will help with the following tasks:

  • Monitor costs and usage, setting daily, monthly or annual budgets with specific limits.
  • Create scheduled reports to stay informed on how actual or forecasted costs and usage progress toward your budget threshold.
  • Respond to thresholds setting up custom actions to run automatically or through an approval process when a budget target is exceeded.

Security

aws cloud

Even though AWS cloud services are builded to be extra secure, there is something called Shared Responsibility Model that users commonly don’t know. Basically, AWS is responsible for security “OF” the cloud, things like hardware, software or networking and  the customer is responsible for security “IN” the cloud (Customer data, Access Management, Firewall configuration, etc).

To keep our AWS infrastructure secure while is growing, we could follow the next best practices:

Implement and enforce cloud security controls

The most basic and important security controls you need to have in place in your AWS environments are access controls. Providing least privilege cloud access to people in your organization is one the best practices to avoid security branches. There is a few practices that could help with this:

  • Implementing multi- factor authentication (MFA).
  • Enabling single sign-on (SSO).
  • Creating IAM users with well defined roles and permissions.
  • Rotating access keys regularly.
  • Requiring strong passwords of at least 14 characters with a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.


Detection, monitoring, and alerting


data center


It’s always a good idea to build a strategy to detect any kind of thread and take actions based on that data. AWS has a few tools that could help to automatized this processes:

  • Amazon GuardDuty – Managed threat detection services that monitor your workloads for unusual activity that might indicate malicious activity.
  • Amazon Macie – Provides AI-powered discovery, categorization, and protection for any sensitive data identified in your environments and delivers alerts if unauthorized access is suspected.
  • AWS Config Rules – This tool evaluates the configuration of a resource against your pre-determined configuration rules so you can identify any potential compliance issues.
  • Amazon CloudWatch – Monitoring service for AWS resources and any applications you run on AWS.
  • AWS Security Hub – A comprehensive view of your environment with prioritization of all your security alerts from AWS services like Amazon GuardDuty, Amazon Inspector, Amazon Macie, and other third-party solutions.



Back up your data

database storage


Backing your data is one of the best techniques to save your customer data in case of security branches or even bad practices that result in accidental data loss. 

AWS offers AWS Backup for backup strategies on multiple services like: S3, RDS, EBS volumes and more.



Leveraging AWS Machine Learning Services for Data Analysis and Decision Making

optimize costs

Thank you for reading the Amazon AWS blog! We hope that our articles have helped you develop your cloud skills and expand your knowledge of cloud computing.

As you may know, Microsoft Azure is one of the top cloud platforms, and we understand that many of our customers use both AWS and Azure in their existing services. AWS operates with a customer-centric philosophy and we are committed to ensuring that our services integrate seamlessly with other platforms, including Azure.

We are proud to offer the AWS Skill Builder, which is a comprehensive training program that provides hands-on experience and technical skills to help you master the AWS platform. Our training programs are designed to meet the needs of both new and experienced users, and we offer a variety of certification options to validate your expertise.

At AWS, we continue to enhance our platform and offer new services that meet the evolving needs of our customers. Recently, we announced several new services and features, including those designed to support third-party developers, such as our new SaaS Boost and App Runner offerings.

Thank you for choosing AWS as your cloud provider. We look forward to continuing to provide you with the most innovative and reliable cloud infrastructure and services.

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