Amazon Web Services: A Quick Reference Guide
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a collection of managed web services (infrastructure building blocks) that together make up a cloud computing platform. The most well known are Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Simple Storage Services (S3).
Amazon has been steadily improving and innovating on multiple fronts – storage, compute, databases, management and orchestration. The innovation is outpacing the market ability to absorb in many cases. Corporate IT is way behind the startup world in its ability to comprehend, let alone leverage these Web Services.
The next decade is going to be the transformation of enterprise architecture to take advantage of these innovations. Just like e-commerce took almost 10+ years to become mainstream, i anticipate the same trajectory is going to happen with the adoption of cloud web services.
How can these web services help your business?
- AWS Authentication, an implicit service, the authentication infrastructure used to authenticate access to the various services.
- CloudFront, a content delivery network (CDN) for distributing objects stored in S3 to so-called “edge locations” near the requester.
- CloudWatch, provides monitoring for AWS cloud resources and applications, starting with EC2.
- DevPay, currently in limited beta version, is a billing and account management system for applications that
- DynamoDB, a fully managed NoSQL database service that provides fast and predictable performance
- Elastic Beanstalk provides quick deployment and management of applications in the cloud.
- Elastic Block Store (EBS) provides persistent block-level storage volumes for EC2.
- Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) provides scalable virtual private servers using Xen.
- Elastic MapReduce allows businesses, researchers, data analysts, and developers to easily and cheaply process vast amounts of data. It uses a hosted Hadoop framework running on the web-scale infrastructure of EC2 and Amazon S3.
- ElastiCache provides in-memory caching for web applications.
- Flexible Payments Service (FPS) provides an interface for micropayments.
- Fulfillment Web Service provides a programmatic web service for sellers to ship items to and from Amazon usingFulfillment by Amazon.
- Historical Pricing provides access to Amazon’s historical sales data from its affiliates. (It appears that this service has been discontinued.)
- Mechanical Turk (Mturk) manages small units of work distributed among many humans.
- Amazon Product Advertising API formerly known as Amazon Associates Web Service (A2S) and Amazon E-Commerce Service (ECS), provides access to Amazon’s product data and electronic commerce functionality.
- Relational Database Service (RDS) provides a scalable database server with MySQL and Oracle support.
- Route 53 provides a highly available and scalable Domain Name System (DNS) web service.
- CloudSearch, provides basic full text search and indexing of textual content.
- Simple Email Service (SES) provides bulk and transactional email sending.
- Simple Storage Service (S3) provides Web Service based storage.
- Simple Queue Service (SQS) provides a hosted message queue for web applications.
- Simple Notification Service (SNS) provides a hosted multiprotocol “push” messaging for web applications.
- SimpleDB, allows developers to run queries on structured data. It operates in concert with EC2 and S3 to provide “the core functionality of a database.”
- Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) creates a logically isolated set of Amazon EC2 instances which can be connected to an existing network using a VPN connection.
- CloudFormation, create a collection of related AWS resources and provision them in an orderly and predictable fashion.
- AWS Import/Export, accelerates moving large amounts of data into and out of AWS using portable storage devices for transport.
- AWS Management Console (AWS Console), A web-based point and click interface to manage and monitor the Amazon infrastructure suite including EC2, EBS, Amazon Elastic MapReduce, and Amazon CloudFront.
- AWS Simple Monthly Calculator helps you estimate your AWS monthly costs
- AWS Storage Gateway, an iSCSI block storage appliance with cloud-based backup.
Bottomline and Takeaways
The challenge for IT organizations and even other vendors is how to keep pace with the managed web services innovation that Amazon Web Services is unleashing. AWS creates a virtuous cycle as their ecosystem grows creating a true innovation vortex or network effect.