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Yesterday, EveryBlock, along with a number of other Web sites , was knocked off-line when our hosting provider, Amazon Web Services (AWS), began having service problems in one of its regions. (A quick aside: a “region” is a term of art for AWS, meaning, roughly, a geographically-related group of data centers). We, the EveryBlock team, just brought the site back up in the past hour, and it is now operating normally. While the acute problem originated with AWS, EveryBlock is not without blame for this downtime. Frankly, we screwed up.
So many cloud pundits are piling on to the misfortunes of Amazon Web Services this week as a response to the massive failures in the AWS Virginia region. If you think this week exposed weakness in the cloud, you don't get it: it was the cloud's shining moment, exposing the strength of cloud computing. In short, if your systems failed in the Amazon cloud this week, it wasn't Amazon's fault. You either deemed an outage of this nature an acceptable risk or you failed to design for Amazon's cloud computing model. The strength of cloud computing is that it puts control over application availability in the hands of the application developer and not in the hands of your IT staff, data center limitations, or a managed services provider.
Welcome to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Documentation. Whether you are new to AWS or an advanced user, you can find useful information about the services ranging from introductions to advanced features. To learn how you can get started with AWS, see our Getting Started with AWS guide. If you are interested in learning more about our AWS Free Usage Tier, see our AWS free usage tier article . Read the AWS documentation on Amazon Kindle .
tl;dr : Amazon had a major outage last week, which took down some popular websites. Despite using a lot of Amazon services, SmugMug didn’t go down because we spread across availability zones and designed for failure to begin with, among other things. We’ve known for quite some time that SkyNet was going to achieve sentience and attack us on April 21st, 2011 . What we didn’t know is that Amazon’s Web Services platform (AWS) was going to be their first target, and that the attack would render many popular websites inoperable while Amazon battled the Terminators. Sorry about that, that was probably our fault for deploying SkyNet there in the first place. We’ve been getting a lot of questions about how we survived ( SmugMug was minimally impacted, and all major services remained online during the AWS outage) and what we think of the whole situation.
In my last post I talked about some of the reasons we chose AWS as our computing platform. We’re about one year into our transition to AWS from our own data centers. We’ve learned a lot so far, and I thought it might be helpful to share with you some of the mistakes we’ve made and some of the lessons we’ve learned. 1.
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Introduction to Cloud Computing Cloud computing is all the rage today. Each new day brings some announcement from yet another company desperately trying to get on the bandwagon.
Sure, cloud computing platforms free developers from scalability and deployment issues, allowing them to spend more time actually writing web applications and services. But when choosing between two prominent platforms, Google App Engine and Amazon Web Services (AWS), which platform is best for you? The choice can be simple if you fall into one of the following two scenarios: If your application can be architected to run within the limited Google App Engine runtime environment, then take advantage of Google's lower hosting costs. If you need a more flexible cloud deployment platform, then AWS is a good fit for your needs.
If you are a Java developer and your organization is jumping on the cloud computing bandwagon, you have to change the way you build and deploy applications. In this article, I will examine what is in store for you with each cloud delivery model and with both public and private cloud scenarios. Cloud Computing Delivery Models: IaaS, PaaS and SaaS
The rise of cloud technologies has given the developer immense resources not known in the past. You can now bring unprecedented richness to your application by hooking into cloud resources. In this article I will outline three key ways in which the developer can leverage the cloud. PaaS: Cloud as Development Workspace No longer do you need to be installing all sorts of SDKs and IDEs on your desktop. No longer must you compile on a machine in the office.