Amazon Web Services – What Are They, and What Can They Do?

By May 17, 2017 Articles, Web & Cloud
Amazon Web Services

Launched in 2006, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has become one of the biggest cloud service platforms in the world. In 2015, the tech giant revealed that more than a billion customers had started using the platform. Popular among every type of business entity — from startups to global mega corporations — AWS is also the cloud platform of choice for Instagram, Expedia and Netflix.

In spite of these big-name companies, AWS is particularly well-suited to startups and small- and medium-sized businesses seeking to set up a scalable computing infrastructure quickly and easily. Because the numerous services it offers are designed to scale with any business, it can work with enterprises of all sizes. As an AWS partner, the Truewater team can manage cloud infrastructures hosted on the platform on behalf of our clients.

Virtual Computing

Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is one of the core components of Amazon’s platform. In layman’s terms, EC2 allows users to rent computing hardware and software physically located in the AWS datacenter that are programmed to deliver that capacity across the internet as an online service. Usually referred to as “virtualization,” this fully scalable and customizable technology eliminates the need to invest in high-end computing hardware up-front.

Like most cloud-computing platforms, EC2 is easily managed by a web-based user interface, allowing you to access your solution from any browser. With this service, you can essentially program it to do anything an on-site server would do. Amazon provides a few core building blocks for developing your own software, but we’re guessing that you’ll need help from an IT consultant to get the most out of that feature.

EC2 is ideal for businesses seeking to virtualize their entire computing environments and have them accessible online. With Amazon Machine Images (AMI) your employees can launch their office desktop from almost any browsers, working with your business apps and data while on the move, at home or anywhere else. AMIs also include detailed data access management and encryption.

Online Storage

AWS’s Simple Storage Service (S3) is an online storage facility that allows you to host websites, website content, backup archives and just about anything else. With its web-based management console, S3 allows your employees to access company data wherever they are just by using a browser.

S3 is designed with durability and security in mind. All stored data is automatically encrypted, and data gets special protections when transported across the internet. Amazon also stores your data in multiple data centers and on multiple devices in each facility. As such, it’s practically impossible for your data to get lost unless, of course, you delete it.

Elastic Block Storage (EBS) is another storage component of AWS. EBS stores data in blocks of a specific size, meaning that it functions more like the hard drive on your computer than a dynamic and adaptable online storage space.

Other Services

AWS is enormous, and its virtual computing platform and storage facilities present just two parts of this extremely flexible and scalable solution. AWS also provides managed databases, data migration services, content delivery, analytics, software development tools, disaster recovery and more. In fact, there are over 70 individual services in total.

The platform uses data centers all over the world. In the United States, for example, there are three in the West Coast, and three in the East Coast. Like other cloud computing platforms, the only thing a customer needs to access their AWS service is a barebones computer with an internet connection. It’s great for small- and medium-sized businesses because there’s no need to invest in expensive hardware, and all your computing power and storage requirements can be taken care of remotely.

If you’re hoping to enjoy the flexibility and power of AWS, call Truewater today to find out how we can help design, build and maintain a tailor-made AWS infrastructure for your business.

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Truewater

Truewater was established in 2001 with the vision of bringing enterprise class IT support to small and medium sized businesses.