cloudonaut

cloudonaut

Your launchpad for Amazon Web Services (AWS)

#20 End-user monitoring of your website with CloudWatch Synthetics

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There are countless reasons why your website is not working as your users expect. From a technical point of view, you can monitor your load balancers, your web servers, and your database. But what if that external script that you embed is breaking your site? Expired TLS certificate? Something wrong with DNS? How can you test that your website works for real users?

In this episode, we introduce CloudWatch Synthetics as a solution to monitor your website from a user perspective.

#19 Scaling Container Clusters on AWS: ECS and EKS

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Containers are a powerful tool to streamline your development and deployment process. However, a container cluster - no matter if you are using ECS (Elastic Container Service), EKS (Elastic Kubernetes Service), or self-managed Kubernetes - increases complexity. You are not only managing virtual machines anymore, but you are also operating containers on top of those virtual machines. Luckily, AWS offers a few approaches to minimize the effort of providing the computing capacity for your container cluster.

- ECS with Cluster Auto Scaling
- ECS with DIY Auto Scaling based on CloudWatch Events and Metrics
- ECS on Fargate
- EKS with Cluster Autoscaler and Managed Node Group
- EKS on Fargate

#18 CloudFormation vs. Terraform

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The most reliable way to automate creating, updating, and deleting your cloud resources is to describe the target state of your infrastructure and use a tool to apply it to the current state of your infrastructure. AWS CloudFormation and Terraform are the most valuable tools to implement Infrastructure as Code on AWS.

But what are the differences between both tools?

#17 AWS Account Structure

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Using multiple AWS accounts to isolate workloads has been a best practice, not only since AWS introduced consolidated billing in 2010. AWS made a huge step by introducing AWS Organizations in 2017 and has added more and more features on top of the formerly boundary of an AWS account. In my opinion, we have passed the sweet spot between centralism and isolated accounts. The possibilities powered by AWS Organizations ruin the concept of isolated accounts with limited blast radius.

I recommend, to manage no more than 50 AWS accounts per AWS organization. Use multiple AWS organizations instead. Also, think twice before using SCP or Trusted Organization Access, both features make centralism permanent. I haven't seen a thriving, innovative, and centralized IT organization so far. Correct me if I'm wrong.

#16 CloudWatch Metrics & Alarms reloaded

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Amazon CloudWatch improved significantly over the years. It's time to look at its monitoring capabilities again. CloudWatch is an excellent starting point to implement enhanced monitoring on AWS. In this episode, Michael demonstrates what you can do with CloudWatch metrics and alarms. Metrics provide a time-series database for telemetry (e.g., CPU utilization of an EC2 instance). Alarms watch a metric and trigger actions if a threshold is reached.

#15 Advanced AWS Networking

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AWS offers shiny and powerful networking services. However, you should know about the pitfalls when designing advanced networking architectures for AWS. I will share some pitfalls that came to my attention when consulting clients to get the most out of AWS.

You will learn how to answer the following questions: VPC Peering or Transit Gateway NAT Gateway or Public Subnet? VPC Endpoints or NAT Gateway? CloudFront or Akamai, Cloudflare, Fastly ...? Route 53 Resolver or Public Hosted Zone?

#14 What's the best AWS Compute option for your project?

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You can run your application on virtual machines using EC2. If you prefer containers, ECS Fargate is your choice. But you can also use the latest Serverless capabilities to run your application on Lambda. But what's the best option for your project?

#13 Review: Amazon Connect

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Do you provide services to consumer or business clients? Which channels do you provide for clients to get support, leave feedback, or let off frustration?

Amazon Connect provides a contact center solution in the cloud. Your clients contact you via phone or chat. A group of agents answers their phone calls and chat conversations. The workflows are fully customizable to your specific needs.

This review puts Amazon Connect to the test. I set up Amazon Connect for our consulting agency, recently. While doing so I had a look into the technical details as well.

#11 10 Success Factors for Starting Your Cloud Journey

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Are you planning to start the cloud journey for your organization soon? Learn from others to turn your initiative into a huge success. Michael and I have accompanied medium-sized businesses and enterprises in their transformation projects and would like to share our learnings with you.

About this podcast

We are two brothers focusing 100% on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Every other week, one of us prepares the topic of the podcast. The topic is not known to the other one, which results in surprising conversations about all things AWS.

Typically, we are covering the following topics: DevOps, Serverless, Container, Security, Infrastructure as Code, Container, Continuous Deployment, S3, EC2, RDS, VPC, IAM, VPC, and many more.

by Andreas Wittig and Michael Wittig focusing on AWS

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