Amazon’s AWS (Amazon Web Services) cloud computing platform is a comprehensive and constantly evolving platform that offers a mix of infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS), and packaged software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings. Tools like database storage, content delivery services, and compute power can be provided by AWS services to an organization.
The internal infrastructure that Amazon.com constructed to manage its online retail operations served as the basis for the launch of Amazon.com Web Services’ initial web services in 2002. It began providing its defining IaaS services in 2006. One of the first businesses to introduce a pay-as-you-go cloud computing model that scales to provide users with compute, storage, or throughput as needed was Amazon Web Services (AWS).
AWS offers numerous tools and solutions that can be used in data centers in up to 190 countries for businesses and software developers. AWS services can be used by private organizations, government agencies, educational institutions, and non-profits.
How AWS works
AWS is broken down into various services; Depending on the requirements of the user, each can be set up in a variety of ways. An AWS service’s configuration options and individual server maps are visible to users.
More than 200 services comprise the AWS portfolio, including those for compute, databases, infrastructure management, application development and security. These services, by category, include the following:
- data management
- hybrid cloud
- development tools
- big data management
- artificial intelligence (AI)
- mobile development
- messages and notification
AWS’s services are offered by dozens of data centers located in 87 availability zones (AZs) located in various regions of the world. A location with multiple physical data centers is known as an AZ. A collection of AZs connected by low-latency network links in close proximity is known as a region.
For compliance, proximity to end customers, and availability optimization, a business will select one or more AZs. AWS customers, for instance, can create highly reliable cloud infrastructure that is resistant to server or data center failures by spinning up virtual machines (VMs) and replicating data across multiple AZs.
The Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) service offers compute capacity in the form of virtual servers known as EC2 instances. Numerous instance types of varying sizes and capacities are available through the EC2 service. These are made for specific applications and workloads, like jobs that use a lot of memory and use accelerated computing. Auto Scaling, a tool for dynamically scaling capacity to maintain instance health and performance, is also available from AWS.
Storage The scalable object storage offered by Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) can be used for data backup, collection, and analytics. To keep things organized, an IT professional stores data and files in S3 buckets as S3 objects, which can be up to five gigabytes in size. Using Amazon Glacier for long-term cold storage or S3’s Infrequent Access storage class can help a business save money.
When EC2 instances are used, Amazon Elastic Block Store provides block-level storage volumes for persistent data storage. Managed cloud-based file storage is provided by Amazon Elastic File System.
A company can also use storage transport devices like AWS Snowball, Snowball Edge, and Snowmobile to move data to the cloud or use AWS Storage Gateway to let on-premises apps access cloud data.
Data management and databases
The Amazon Relational Database Service supports Oracle, MariaDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQL Server, and Amazon Aurora, a proprietary high-performance database. It offers AWS users a relational database management system. Through Amazon DynamoDB, AWS provides managed NoSQL databases as well.
As in-memory and real-time data caches for applications, AWS customers can use Amazon ElastiCache and DynamoDB Accelerator. Business intelligence tasks are made simpler for data analysts thanks to Amazon Redshift’s data warehouse.
Migration and hybrid cloud AWS offers a variety of services and tools to assist users in migrating applications, databases, servers, and data to its public cloud. The AWS Migration Hub is a location where on-premises to cloud migrations can be monitored and managed. EC2 Simple Systems Manager assists an IT team in configuring AWS instances and on-premises servers once they are in the cloud.
Additionally, Amazon facilitates hybrid cloud deployments through partnerships with a number of technology providers. Software-defined data center technology from VMware is now available in the AWS cloud through VMware Cloud on AWS. Another partnership resulted in the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux for Amazon EC2, which brings Red Hat’s operating system to the AWS cloud.
Tools like AWS Outposts deliver AWS services and infrastructure across multiple environments once applications, databases, servers, and data are migrated to the cloud or a hybrid environment.
An administrator can use the Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC) to control a virtual network that uses a separate portion of the AWS cloud. Within a VPC, AWS automatically sets up new resources for added security.
The Application Load Balancer and Network Load Balancer of the Elastic Load Balancing service can be used by administrators to balance network traffic. AWS also offers Amazon Route 53, a domain name system that connects end users to applications.
Through AWS Direct Connect, an IT professional can create a dedicated connection between an on-premises data center and the AWS cloud.
Software development kits (SDKs) like AWS CloudShell and AWS command-line tools can be utilized by developers to deploy and manage applications and services:
Amazon’s proprietary code interface, the AWS Command Line Interface;
Developers can manage cloud services from Mac, Windows, and Linux environments with the help of AWS Tools for PowerShell.
AWS Lambda, a compute service that enables developers to run code from over 200 AWS services and SaaS applications, is tested using the AWS Serverless Application Model, which developers use to simulate an AWS environment.
For a wide range of platforms and programming languages, including Android, C++, iOS, Java, Node.js, PHP, Python, and Ruby, AWS SDKs are available.
Custom application programming interfaces (APIs) that enable applications to access data or functionality from back-end services can be created, managed, and monitored with Amazon API Gateway by a development team. API Gateway simultaneously manages thousands of simultaneous API calls.
AWS also provides AWS Step Functions, a service that visualizes workflows for microservices-based applications, and Amazon Elastic Transcoder, a packaged media transcoding service.
With the following services, a development team can also create pipelines for continuous delivery and integration.
To model and automate the steps of the software release process, AWS CodePipeline;
to automate the writing and compilation of code, use AWS CodeBuild;
AWS CodeDeploy, which can be used in conjunction with AWS Lambda to deploy code automatically to EC2 instances;
AWS CodeStar, a service for managing various AWS projects that is hosted in the cloud; and AWS Cloud9 for cloud-based code writing, execution, and debugging.
A developer can use AWS X-Ray to evaluate the performance of microservices-based applications and store code in Git repositories.
AWS also provides developers with services for machine learning (ML):
AWS CodeWhisperer, which offers developers code recommendations based on previously used code;
A development framework for building ML models, AWS CodeArtifact; and Amazon SageMaker, a fully managed service that aids data scientists and developers in developing and deploying machine learning models.
Management and monitoring
Config Rules, an administrator can manage and monitor the configuration of cloud resources. Together with AWS Trusted Advisor, these tools can assist an IT team in avoiding cloud resource deployments that are overly expensive and poorly configured.
In its portfolio, AWS offers a number of automation tools. Using AWS OpsWorks for Chef, an administrator can also use AWS CloudFormation templates to automate infrastructure provisioning and system configuration.
With Amazon CloudWatch and the AWS Personal Health Dashboard, AWS customers can keep an eye on the health of their applications and resources. In addition, customers can audit user activity and API calls using AWS CloudTrail, which differs significantly from AWS Config.
Security and governance
AWS offers a variety of cloud security services, including AWS Identity and Access Management, which enables administrators to define and control user access to resources. With the AWS Directory Service, an administrator can also connect cloud resources to an existing Microsoft Active Directory and create a user directory. Additionally, a company can set up and manage policies for multiple AWS accounts using the AWS Organizations service.
Additionally, tools for automatically assessing potential security risks have been introduced by Amazon Web Services. AWS environments are scanned by Amazon Inspector for security and compliance vulnerabilities. To safeguard private cloud data, Amazon Macie makes use of ML technology.
Software- and hardware-based encryption, protection against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, the acquisition of Secure Sockets Layer and Transport Layer Security certificates, and the filtering of potentially harmful traffic to web applications are all included in AWS’s tools and services.
A graphical user interface for AWS called the AWS Management Console is accessible via a browser. It can be used to manage security credentials and cloud storage and resource management. All AWS resources can be accessed through the AWS Console.
Application and big data analytics services are included in AWS’s big data management and analytics offerings:
Amazon EMR, which provides a framework for processing large amounts of data called Apache Hadoop;
Tools for processing and analyzing streaming data are provided by Amazon Kinesis.
AWS Glue, a service that manages jobs for extract, transformation, and loading;
Amazon Elasticsearch Service, which lets a group use the open-source Elasticsearch tool to monitor applications, analyze logs, and do other things;
Analysts are able to query data thanks to Amazon Athena for S3; and Amazon QuickSight, a data visualization tool for analysts.
A variety of AI model development and delivery platforms, as well as packaged AI-based applications, are available from Amazon Web Services (AWS). The following are included in the Amazon AI suite of tools:
Voice and text chatbot technology from Amazon Lex;
Polly from Amazon for speech-to-text translation;
Amazon Rekognition for analyzing images and faces;
To extract crucial text and data from documents, use Amazon Textract;
Amazon Kendra to improve app and website searches;
Amazon Forecast for models that predict the entire business;
Amazon CodeGuru is a tool for automating code reviews and identifying inefficient, costly code; and Amazon’s Equipment Lookout for proactive maintenance.
AWS also provides developers with the tools they need to create intelligent apps that make use of machine learning and intricate algorithms.
Developers can develop and train custom AI models using clusters of graphics processing units or compute-optimized instances with AWS Deep Learning Amazon Machine Images (AMIs). Deep learning development frameworks for Apache MXNet and TensorFlow are also available on AWS.
The virtual assistant Alexa Voice Service is powered by AWS technologies, and developers can use the Alexa Skills Kit to create voice-based apps for Echo devices.
In addition, healthcare professionals can use Amazon Comprehend Medical, which extracts information from medical text, and Amazon HealthLake to store, transfer, and query a patient’s healthcare data.
Mobile app development
The AWS Mobile Hub provides a variety of services and tools for app developers. The AWS Mobile SDK, which provides code samples and libraries, is one of these tools.
In addition, a mobile app developer has access to Amazon Cognito, which can be used to manage user access to mobile apps, and Amazon Pinpoint, which can be used to send push notifications to application end users and evaluate how well those communications worked.
Notifications and messages The core communication between applications and users is provided by AWS messaging services. Managed message queue Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS) ensures that distributed application components function as intended by sending, storing, and receiving messages between them.
A company can send publish-subscribe messages to endpoints like end users or services using Amazon Simple Notification Service (SNS). Push messaging to mobile devices is made possible by SNS’s mobile messaging feature. Marketers and IT professionals can send and receive emails thanks to Amazon Simple Email Service.
Through Babylon.js and AWS Simplify, AWS provides development tools for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). Babylon.js lets users make applications for augmented reality and virtual reality without having to know how to program or make 3D graphics. Users can also test and publish applications in the browser using the service. The following uses can be made of Babylon.js:
AWS Simplify lets developers host and deploy their AR and VR applications for 3D web applications, e-commerce, sales, marketing, online education, manufacturing, training simulations, and gaming.
Development of games AWS can also be used to develop games. For games like Ubisoft’s For Honor, major game developers use AWS services. Services for each stage of a game’s lifecycle can be provided by AWS.
For instance, AWS gives developers access to analytics, back-end services, and developer tools like Amazon Lumberyard that help them make 3D games. Defending against DDoS attacks and building, deploying, and scaling a developer’s platform are all made easier by back-end services like Amazon GameLift.
Analytics help game developers learn about their players and how they play. On AWS servers, developers can also host or store game data.
AWS also offers a wide range of services for the Internet of Things (IoT) that make deployments possible. A back-end platform for managing IoT devices and transferring data to other AWS storage and database services is provided by the AWS IoT service.
AWS IoT Greengrass brings AWS compute capabilities to IoT devices, and the Amazon IoT Button provides hardware for IoT functionality that is limited.
Additional offerings from Amazon Web Services include the following business productivity SaaS options:
Amazon Chime, which supports text-based and online video meetings across devices;
Amazon WorkDocs, a service for sharing and storing files; and Amazon WorkMail, a calendaring-friendly business email service.
These desktop and streaming application services are available on AWS:
Amazon WorkSpaces, a platform for remote desktop as a service; and the service Amazon AppStream, which lets a developer stream a desktop application stored in the AWS cloud to a user’s web browser.
Additionally, AWS provides blockchain services:
A service called Amazon Managed Blockchain aids in the creation and administration of blockchain networks; as well as the Amazon Quantum Ledger Database, a ledger database that keeps track of and stores a user’s blockchain activity.
AWS RoboMaker, a service that enables developers to create and deploy robotics applications, and Amazon Braket, a service that aids developers in quantum computing research, are also available.
Customers, competitors, and AWS pricing models AWS charges for its cloud services on a pay-as-you-go basis, either by the hour or by the second. Customers who prepay or sign up for one- or three-year usage commitments also have the option to reserve a predetermined amount of compute capacity at a discounted price. Volume-based discounts are available to customers, meaning that the more a service is used, the less they pay per gigabyte.
Another possibility is the AWS Free Tier. On the AWS platform, customers can start building for free by accessing up to 60 products. There are three choices for the Free Tier: always free, with free trials and 12 months.
The AWS pricing calculator can be used to estimate costs for potential customers. In addition, customers selecting a pricing plan can get on-demand assistance from third-party experts certified by AWS.
Synergy Research Group says that Amazon AWS will have 33% of the cloud market by the first quarter of 2022. In the public IaaS market, this is the most of any of its rivals, including Microsoft Azure, Google, and IBM.
The following businesses make use of AWS: Salesforce BMW Group Siemens GoDaddy Verizon Netflix PBS FOX United Airlines Air Canada.