8 Questions to ask an AWS Expert

via GIPHY If you’re headhunting a cloud computing expert, specifically someone who knows Amazon Web Services (AWS) and EC2, you’ll want to have a battery of questions to ask them to assess their knowledge.  As with any technical interview focus on concepts and big picture.  As the 37Signals folks like to say “hire for attitude, …

Amazon Web Services – What is it and why is it important?

Amazon Web Services is a division of Amazon the bookseller, but this part of the business is devoted solely to infrastructure and internet servers.  These are the building blocks of data centers, the workhorses of the internet.  AWS’s offering of Cloud Computing solutions allows a business to setup or “spinup” in the jargon of cloud …

Offsite Backups – What are they and why are they important?

Backups are obviously an important part of any managed infrastructure deployment.  Computing systems are inherently fallible, through operator error or hardware failure.  Existing systems must be backed up, from configurations, software and media files, to the backend data store. In a managed hosting environment or cloud hosting environment, it is convenient to use various filesystem …

Amazon EC2 Outage – Failures, Lessons and Cloud Deployments

Now that we’ve had a chance to take a deep breath after last week’s AWS outage, I’ll offer some comments of my own.  Hopefully just enough time has passed to begin to have a broader view, and put events in perspective. Despite what some reports may have announced, Amazon wasn’t down, but rather a small …

Backup and Recovery in EC2 – 5 Point Checklist

Best practices for backups and disaster recovery aren’t tremendously different in the cloud than from a managed hosting environment.  But they are more crucial since cloud servers are less reliable than physical servers.  Also the security aspect may play a heightened role in the cloud.  Here are some points to keep in mind. Read the …

Managing Security in Amazon Web Services

Security is on everyone’s mind when talking about the cloud.  What are some important considerations? For the web operations team: AWS has no perimeter security, should this be an overriding concern? How do I manage authentication keys? How do I harden my machine images? ** Original article — Intro to EC2 Cloud Deployments ** Amazon’s …

Review: Cloud Application Architectures

George Reese’s book doesn’t have the catchiest title, but the book is superb.  One thing to keep in mind, it is not a nuts and bolts or howto type of book.  Although there is a quick intro to EC2 APIs etc, you’re better off looking at the AWS docs, or Jeff Barr’s book on the …

Introduction to EC2 Cloud Deployments

Cloud Computing holds a lot of promise, but there are also a lot of speed bumps in the road along the way. In this six part series we’re going to cover a lot of ground.  We don’t intend this series to be an overly technical nuts and bolts howto.  Rather we will discuss high level …