Cloud Computing: Amazon Web Services (AWS)
The Cloud Computing infrastructure is the backbone of providing Cloud services in form of a web service. Understanding, short listing and choosing correct service provider for deploying Cloud service is an important role in success of the service. Amazon is one of the market leaders in offering this service as they are one of the pioneers in online services. Popularly known as AWS, this is also the backbone of Amazon.com’s $15 billion retail business and transactions enterprise. This story takes a preview of some of the features that AWS is offering and what one should watch out for before signing up with a platform provider like Amazon.
Imagine if you want to buy a computer for home usage. The typical parameters that you should look before buying a computer are processor (ex: Intel or AMD), memory size (ex: 1GB of RAM), Operating system supported (Windows or Linux) and disk size (in terms of GBs). Similarly any cloud offering should include two aspects for customers to choose, and they are:
- Computing resource: Instance of computer, RAM size, Processor make, Operating System;
- Storage resource: The size of disk space on which your data is stored
Under the AWS umbrella, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (referred as Amazon EC2) offering facilitates the ‘Computing resource’ and Amazon Simple Storage Service (referred as Amazon S3) offering facilitates the ‘Storage resource’.
So if you are hosting your application as a part of AWS, you need to determine the amount of Computing and Storage Resource that would require deploying the service successfully. Once it is determined anybody can signup for AWS using your Email ID, Address for communication and Credit card number. After completing the Amazon EC2 sign up process, you have automatically signed up for the Amazon S3 service as well.
As we have been discussing in the Cloud Computing series, Amazon offers ‘pay-as-you-go’ option. As on July 26th here are the charges for running EC2:
In the above mentioned table, various instances can be defined as follows:
|Small||1.7 GB RAM, 1 CPU machine with 160 GB of storage|
|Large||7.5 GB RAM, 2 EC2 (2 Cores) with 850 GB of storage|
|Extra Large||15 GB RAM, 2 EC2 (4 Cores) with 1690 GB storage|
If you require additional storage apart from the storage space provided part of EC2 instance, here are the pricing options for S3:
Now let us come to Data transfer. Suppose you browse internet from an Internet café, your will be charged per hour for the usage. For home computers, Internet Service Providers (ISP) provider different options like unlimited, 1GB free and additional MBs cost Rs.1 per MB. Similarly when you make your application available on cloud and whenever customers access your application, some amount of data need to go in and go out of the cloud datacenter, and Amazon pricing options for such a data transfer is as follows:
This summarizes the computing and storage charges you need to pay for deploying any Cloud based web service. The whole “data center” is maintained by Amazon thereby leaving very less hassle to organizations that are deploying Cloud services. Apart from the pricing options mentioned above, what differentiate one cloud vendor from others are the additional services like load balancing, different monitoring tools, span of operating system, database support and 24x7 support. How are these impacts you? We will explore more in the forthcoming articles. Till then, wish you “Happy Clouding”