Have you ever imagined how an application like Facebook works? How is Facebook available on the internet? It’s much more than a website — it’s an online platform used by billions of people across the world.
In reality, understanding how Facebook operates is simple. To process the billions of people in website traffic each second, the company relies on thousands of servers to avoid a systematic crash and keep the website online.
As you can imagine, it costs this company a lot of money to maintain the integrity of its servers and keep Facebook live. For smaller companies offering SaaS products and similar applications, making these types of accommodations can be both extremely difficult and expensive.
Thus, cloud computing has become a viable solution to deliver valuable computing services for all kinds of businesses. Amazon Web Services (AWS), without any shock, owns a large market share in cloud computing technology.
Understanding what cloud computing and AWS doesn’t have to be difficult if you were considering creating an SaaS product or already have one. This beginner’s guide will provide all the information you need to make a switch to cloud computing and save a lot of money and time in the process.
In order for you to fully understand cloud computing and how AWS can help, let’s use an example. Let’s say that you are creating an application, like the aforementioned Facebook.
Your application’s development on AWS is finished and is ready to go on your computer. The next step is making sure the application is available online so other people can use it. How would you ensure that this happens?
Here is how an application traditionally goes live online:
All of these procedures must take place before an application goes online. As you can imagine, it’s going to be extremely burdensome and expensive to put them into effect. Are you wondering how you can streamline these procedures and save money in the process?
The solution is cloud computing.
With the same example, here is how cloud computing can help:
All of this sounds like a perfect solution to traditional server use. So, what is cloud computing?
Cloud computing is simply the use of remote servers on the internet that a company doesn’t own. The “cloud” in cloud computing indicates that all of the computing power is being processed in a remote, digitized environment.
In fact, the advent of cloud computing has led to almost every modern business to use the cloud. This helps them to save a lot of money and place their servers in the hands of well-known companies that include Google, Microsoft, and Amazon.
By switching to cloud computing, you can take advantage of all the benefits that traditional server infrastructures don’t offer at cost-friendly pricing models that will allow your business to scale in the future.
Cloud computing services are generally offered by the three main providers you’ll find below.
Cloud computing is no longer a secret for modern businesses. As such, it’s offered by dozens of different companies. Among them, three major companies have the most control:
Amazon Web Services happens to be the most prolific provider of cloud computing services. This guide will break down what AWS is and why you should make the switch.
The AWS platform was originally launched back in 2003, before cloud computing was widely recognized. A year later, AWS was retooled to elevate the platform focused on web services.
Particularly, executives wanted to expand the platform to a broader target audience – people and businesses who would need remote cloud computing solutions. In 2006, AWS was relaunched to provide three main services:
Over time, the platform became widely-used among the world’ largest tech giants and global enterprises.
AWS isn’t the only cloud computing solution, but it ranks consistently as one of the best. Here are some key statistics regarding AWS:
With this said, all companies starting a new product will look to a provider that is hosting the most complex applications. Stakeholders, in particular, will be reluctant to do business with an ill-equipped provider.
Amazon has a lot to show for their large market share in cloud computing. For example, Netflix, the world’s most preeminent video streaming service, is hosted exclusively on AWS.
It also helps that Amazon itself uses the service. When you consider that a bunch of top companies are using AWS, making the decision to follow seems easier. Now that you fully understand why AWS is important, it’s time to dig deep into what the service truly is.
Amazon Web Services is a cloud computing service offered by Amazon. It allows members to access the cloud for computing, content delivery, networking, database, cloud storage, and much more.
AWS provides companies with all the services they need to get their IT infrastructure started without them purchasing anything. As such, AWS provides numerous services based on your specific needs.
AWS offers more than 100+ different services. For brevity, this guide will touch on the most important services available to businesses. Primary AWS services are broken down into the following categories:
AWS provides computing services to help businesses utilize high-end servers to host websites and applications. AWS provides a wide variety of computing services, which include:
All of these services are designed to provide remote computing solutions to all kinds of businesses.
Amazon offers scalable storage services, helping businesses to store files. Each file can be a maximum size of 5 TB.
These storage and backup services include:
Amazon can even manage your databases for you, offering backups, security patches, and much more:
Websites and applications will always face security threats. Facebook is a prime example of a large company that was the victim of a massive data breach from hackers. AWS provides the following security services:
AWS allows users to develop resources with a single click. With these tools, you can set up a large infrastructure and manage it with ease:
Amazon is the largest eCommerce company in the world. As such, the company offers relatively affordable pricing options for individuals and businesses. When you choose receive these benefits:
You can minimize your storage bills even more when you choose to classify your data as frequently and infrequently used. When you accomplish this, your data will be separated in various storage classes, such as magnetic tapes, disk storage, and SSD.
SSDs, in particular, are much faster than the other options. Therefore, your frequently used data will be stored there. The data you don’t use frequently will be transferred to a slower storage mode to reduce costs.
AWS, and cloud computing in particular, seems like a very difficult concept to grasp. Luckily, creating an AWS account is very simple. In fact, you can begin your cloud computing procedures in three easy steps:
Now that you fully understand what AWS is, you may have some additional questions. Below are some FAQs on the subject:
Why should I learn AWS?
Do you need programming skills to learn AWS?
Is Linux necessary in using AWS?
AWS has opened the reality of making computing more accessible and convenient. If this has inspired you to create a new web-based product, we’d love to help. At Dev.co, we provide exceptional application development services.
Contact us today to speak to a member of our team and learn more about how we can help.
Ryan is the VP of Operations for DEV.co. He brings over a decade of experience in managing custom website and software development projects for clients small and large, managing internal and external teams on meeting and exceeding client expectations–delivering projects on-time and within budget requirements. Ryan is based in El Paso, Texas.