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Cloud Developer Tips

Practical tips for developers of cloud computing applications.

Recapture Unused EC2 Minutes

How much time is “wasted” in the paid-for but unused portion of the hour when you terminate an instance? How can you recapture this time – which represents compute power – and put it to good use? After all, you’ve paid for it already. This article presents a technique for repurposing an instance after you’re […] read more

Play “Chicken” with Spot Instances

AWS Spot Instances have an interesting economic characteristic that make it possible to game the system a little. Like all EC2 instances, when you initiate termination of a Spot Instance then you incur a charge for the entire hour, even if you’ve used less than a full hour. But, when AWS terminates the instance due […] read more

CloudConnect 2011 Platforms and Ecosystems BOF

This March 7-10 2011 I will be in Santa Clara for the CloudConnect conference. There are many reasons you should go too, and I’d like to highlight one session that you should not miss: the Platforms and Ecosystems BOF, on Tuesday March 8 at 6:00 – 7:30 PM. Read on for a detailed description of […] read more

Lessons Learned from Using Multiple Cloud APIs

Adrian Cole, author of the jClouds library, has an excellent writeup of the trajectory the library’s development followed as it added support for more cloud providers’ APIs. [Update August 2011: Blogger.com has removed Adrian’s blog so that link no longer works.] Some important takeaways for application developers: Your unit tests are as valuable as your […] read more

AWS Auto-Scaling and ELB with Reliable Root Domain Handling

Update May 2011: Now that AWS Route 53 can be used to allow an ELB to host a domain zone apex, the technique described here is no longer necessary. Cool, but not necessary. Someone really has to implement this. I’ve had this draft sitting around ever since AWS announced support for improved CloudWatch alerts and […] read more

The title pretty much says it all. Elastic Beanstalk is the new service from Amazon Web Services offering you easier deployment of Java WAR files. More languages and platforms are expected to be supported in the future. Most people will use the service via the convenient web console, but if you want to automate things […] read more

Using AWS Route 53 to Keep Track of EC2 Instances

This article is a guest post by Guy Rosen, CEO of Onavo and author of the Jack of All Clouds blog. Guy was one of the first people to produce hard numbers on cloud adoption for site hosting, and he continues to publish regular updates to this research in his State of the Cloud series. […] read more

AWS recently added support for receiving Simple Notification Service notifications when S3 loses a Reduced Redundancy Storage S3 object. This raises a number of questions: What the heck does that even mean? Why would I want to do that? Under what conditions does it make financial sense to do that? Let’s take a look at […] read more

Storing AWS Credentials on an EBS Snapshot Securely

Thanks to reader Ewout and his comment on my article How to Keep Your AWS Credentials on an EC2 Instance Securely for suggesting an additional method of transferring credentials: via a snapshot. It’s similar to burning credentials into an AMI, but easier to do and less prone to accidental inclusion in the application’s AMI. Read […] read more

Dynamic infrastructure can be a pain to accommodate in applications. How do you keep track of the set of web servers in your dynamically scaling web farm? How do your apps keep up with which server is currently running what service? How can applications be written so they don’t need to care if a service […] read more