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Amazon Web Services: How To Use And Benefit From Them

Everything you need to know about how to use and benefit from these important cloud-based services.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides businesses with the technology infrastructure required to build and run their own applications without having to manage the actual infrastructure itself. Whether you are a company dealing with cloud security posture management or a company dealing in retail, or any other industry, you are probably going to need AWS. Through AWS, business owners can rent out computing power and storage, or they can even use Amazon’s services as an outsourced hosting provider. However, many business owners aren’t sure where to start when it comes to taking advantage of the benefits offered by AWS. This guide on Amazon Web Services will walk you through everything you need to know about how to use and benefit from these important cloud-based services.

Amazon Web Services: How to Use and Benefit from Them

What is AWS?

AWS, or Amazon Web Services, is a cloud computing platform that lets you store data on its servers. It can be more cost-effective than your own server and less time-consuming than maintaining one yourself. It’s also an ideal way to try out new business ideas with limited investment. Here’s how it works: You pay for what you use, plus an additional small amount for data transfer. There are several other benefits of using AWS—including automatic backup services—which we’ll look at here in greater detail. 

What Can You Do With AWS?

The possibilities are endless when it comes to using AWS. One of the best uses however is running WordPress websites through WP Engine, which was built entirely on top of AWS. Other popular options include building apps (such as Instapaper) and hosting ecommerce sites (like Shopify). And if you’re looking for something simpler? Hosting images on Imgur or sending email through SendGrid are great options too. To get started, check out their Getting Started Guide. It is recommended to start off by creating an account then checking out their free tier usage limits so you know exactly what they have available before diving in headfirst.

Is it worth your time?

Although your first instinct might be to dive right in, it’s worth taking a moment to consider whether AWS is right for you. The cloud isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution—and it shouldn’t be treated as such. When weighing cost versus benefit, make sure you understand exactly what it is that makes AWS unique so that you don’t get caught off guard by hidden fees or long-term commitments. And if you aren’t prepared to work with someone who has experience with AWS, maybe it’s best to leave it alone. While cloud services are becoming more common every day, they aren’t something everyone knows how to use—so make sure you find someone who does.

What about security?

Security may seem like an afterthought when deciding on an IaaS provider but without proper precautions, your data could be at risk even when stored in the cloud. Remember that third-party hosting providers will have access to everything on their servers, which means there could be a security hole waiting for any hacker savvy enough to find it.

Contribute to open source projects

One of Amazon’s biggest web services is its Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), which lets users rent processing power. It’s very cost-effective for startups, but for budding cloud engineers, it can be intimidating. It’s a lot of code to wade through if you’ve never worked with Amazon before. If you’re just getting started with AWS, contributing to open source projects in your free time—be it on GitHub or elsewhere—is a great way to learn. Not only will you get experience working with AWS, but some companies are looking for new hires who have already contributed successfully; it never hurts your resume. In addition, participating in open source projects helps build your reputation as an engineer and opens up opportunities within those projects. Plus, there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing your work help others succeed.

The most useful services of AWS

There are many useful services in AWS however 2 are particularly important and useful. For starters there is DynamoDB. Amazon DynamoDB is a fast and flexible NoSQL database service for all applications that need consistent, single-digit millisecond latency at any scale. It is a fully managed cloud database and supports both document and key-value store models. Its flexible data model, reliable performance, and automatic scaling of throughput capacity, makes it a great fit for mobile, web, gaming, ad tech, IoT, and many other applications. In addition to Amazon’s built-in encryption capabilities to protect your data at rest (Amazon S3) or in transit (Amazon S3 Transfer), you can also encrypt your data using server-side encryption with customer provided keys (SSE-C). This gives you more control over how you use and manage encryption in your applications. Additionally there is also Lambda. Lambda is a serverless computing platform provided by Amazon as a part of its Amazon Web Services. It executes code in response to events and automatically manages the compute resources required by that code. In other words, it is a framework for building and running applications without thinking about servers. Serverless computing really didn’t start catching on until early 2016 after an announcement was made at AWS’s Re:Invent conference. Since then, companies like Slack, Tumblr, and Expedia have adopted serverless computing platforms with intentions to replace their current infrastructure for good.

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