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Top 5 announcements from AWS re:Invent 2018

AWS re:Invent has just completed. It was a huge event with 50,000+ attendees across 7 of the biggest hotels in Vegas, and many new service announcements.

Serverless continue to get lots of attention with new lambda enhancements and better container support. The “hybrid” model of using your own datacenter in conjunction with a cloud provider has been fully embraced by AWS with the new “Outposts” capabilities. Machine learning also got much love with several new services using and supporting it. Read on for my top picks from this week’s announcements…

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Service Mesh: Istio and AWS App Mesh

One of the big announcements at AWS re:Invent this week was the AWS App Mesh.

Before talking about it though, let’s look at what the heck a mesh is anyway…

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AWS approximate storage costs

This post covers some high-level cost approximations for data storage in AWS. I find this a useful rule of thumb, and please see the long list of caveats and notes below, but as a rough approximation of ballpark costs…

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Setting up a VPC in AWS

In the previous blog post, we created a simple HelloWorld example in AWS. We did the bare minimum (as any HelloWorld example should!) by taking advantage of a default VPC, Subnet, NACL, and Internet Gateway but, by necessity for our example, creating a custom Security Group.

In this tutorial, we will shy away from defaults and create a VPC from scratch. Again, this is done in the guise of HelloWorld.

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HelloWorld on an AWS EC2 instance

This is a basic “HelloWorld” tutorial for AWS EC2. We create an EC2 instance, enable the required access, and install Apache to serve a trivial HelloWorld html file.

 

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AWS Best Practices Architecting for the Cloud – Concise Summary

The following is a concise summary of Architecting for the Cloud: AWS Best Practices. The original is about 13,000 words; There is an abridged version of about 4,000 words, and this is an even more concise version, at about 1,500 words.

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AWS Best Practices Architecting for the Cloud – Abridged

The following is an abridged version of Architecting for the Cloud: AWS Best Practices.This is essentially a cut and paste of the most salient parts (the original is about 13,000 words; this is about 4,000). For an even more concise version, see the concise summary (about 1,500 words).

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AWS Well-Architected Framework – Abridged

This is an abridged version of the AWS Well-Architected Framework. It is essentially a cut and paste of the most salient parts (the original is about 18,000 words; this is about 4,000).

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Kubernetes HelloWorld

This tutorial covers how to deploy a simple HelloWorld app on Kubernetes, and expose it externally (as you might for a UI service, for example).

I found setting up the Kube cluster deployment very straightforward, but making it externally accessible much trickier, however it boils down to just two commands:

    $ kubectl create -f boothello-deployment.yaml

    $ kubectl expose -f boothello-service.yaml

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Why use containers?

Containers, and the supporting orchestration platforms, are increasingly popular tools for deploying applications. This article focuses on why you would want to use a container ecosystem. While there are many reasons, including portability and reduced boot times (compared to VMs), this article concentrates on security and cost.

We will focus on Docker, since it is by far the most dominant container, and on Kubernetes, since it seems to have “won” against alternatives such as Swarm and Mesos.

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Kubernetes Admin GUI

docker for mac now comes with Kubernetes support built in to it. It is now the easiest way to experiment with Kubernetes locally (previously,  minikube seemed to be the easiest way). This feature was announced at DockerCon Europe in late 2017 and is supported in docker for mac versions 17.12.0-ce-mac45 or later. Note however, you do need to use the Edge version.

When you get Kubernetes running via docker for mac, you can access the admin GUI as follows…

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Using Docker with a maven project

If you have a maven project, there are a plethora of ways to enable it to run within a docker container.

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Post Production Debugging

Monitoring and Observing Your App Post Release

Pre-release tests are essential, but the ability to debug, monitor and observe your application suite post-release is what allows you to detect, and quickly fix, the production problems that will inevitably rise.

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AWS S3 SLAs

According to the AWS S3 docs, S3 is designed for 99.99% availability over a given year, but their SLA compensates you when availability drops below 99.9% monthly uptime. That is, you will receive some level of refund (up to 25%) if there is more than 43 minutes of downtime per month.

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Copy & Paste buffer

Why be only limited to have a single item in your Copy & Paste buffer?! There are several tools out there that can do this, but my favorite (on the mac at least) is Butler.

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