What is the Amazon Relational Database Service?
Amazon RDS is a managed service operated by Amazon on its cloud based servers. It is part of the increasing number of services that make up Amazon Web Services (AWS).
By being a managed service it significantly reduces the administrative burden on businesses that rely on secure, reliable and fast access to data.
What databases does Amazon RDS support?
RDS supports a surprisingly wide range of databases giving developers and businesses a robust managed service regardless of their needs.
The following instances are supported: Amazon Aurora, PostgreSQL, MySQL, MariaDB, Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server.
What infrastructure do I need to run Amazon RDS?
The beauty of Amazon RDS is that your infrastructure requirements are reduced significantly. Because the database, storage and servers are managed that costly and complex burden is removed.
Instead your infrastructure need only concern itself with how you connect to the hosted service, which can be securely achieved through standard IPsec VPNs.
How do I create a database instance using RDS?
You create an instance using the AWS Management Console. To create an instance you simply specify all the key elements: computational power (processors) and storage capability (speed and capacity).
You can also create instances programmatically using the Amazon RDS APIs. And a command line interface is also available (The AWS Command Line Interface).
How do I back up my AWS RDS database?
The AWS Management Console allows you to define a daily back-up window. By
default a full backup is taken every day and held for 7, though this is
definable. Because Transaction Logs are also held you are able to
restore the database instance to a specific time.
And, as you would expect, you are also able to create Database snapshots whenever you want. These instances are kept until you delete them.
Pay as you go scaling options to accelerate your business
- Managed Relational Database Service
- Pay As You Go, "On Demand" Pricing Model
- Scale Up by increasing compute and storage as required
- Scale Out by adding instances as demands stipulate
- Automated admin, backup and DR services
What disaster recovery options are available with AWS RDS?
For production environments Amazon have provided what they call Multi-AZ Deployments. If you configure your database to run in a Multi-AZ Deployment then a standby replica of your database is created, and kept in sync with your live instance.
The standby replica is hosted in a completely diffferent location removed from any common points of failure. And in the event of a failure of the primary the standy replica will be automatically promoted.
How can I monitor the performance of my database instance?
The key performance metrics such as compute, memory and storage use are available through the AWS Management Console. File and I/O metrics are also available giving you everything you need to monitor performance and to detect where bottle necks may lie.
And with email & SMS alerts you can be notified automatically of specific database events that may require your attention.
How do I scale up an Amazon RDS instance to meet increasing demand?
You can change your instance using the AWS Management Console, or via the APIs or the Command Line Interface. This is referred to as Vertical Scaling - i.e. making the server more powerful.
Changes to the instance are then applied at the next maintenance window, though you can opt to over-ride that and execute the changes immediately.
If you opt to change the compute power then your database will be out of action for a few minutes.
How can I use Amazon RDS to cope with sudden spikes in demand?
In some cases it may make sense to launch or "spin-up" a new database instance to cope with sudden spikes in load or data (Horizontal Scaling). This is an extremely effective way to handle sudden increases, giving you a very flexible way to handle peaks.
The launch of the instance can be controlled programmatically taking only a few minutes, and once the load spike has passed, the instance can be closed down.
Do I have any control over things like the maintenance window?
By default Amazon AWS will define a weekly, 30 minute maintenance window. In this period it will apply
patches and any changes to the instance you have requested. The 30 minute period may be extended where changes take longer.
Because this will impact performance it is likely that you will want to control when such updates are carried out. You can do this by modifying the database instance in question via the AWS Management Console.
Is it safe to store my database in the cloud?
Security has been fully addressed by Amazon and your Amazon RDS runs within a Virtual Private Cloud within AWS. This allows you to ensure that the private database element of your service is not visible from the public internet.
You can control access as you would to any other network resource, by configuring private IP ranges, subnets, routing tables and all network gateways.
Is using Amazon RDS expensive, it looks it.
If you are moving to the cloud then it can appear daunting. Amazon RDS operates a Pay As You Go or "On Demand" model based on usage, allowing you to increase and decrease use as required. But, you can see your costs in real time, giving you the confidence you need.
Amazon also offer Reserved Instances allowing you to commit to a 1 or 3 year term to help reduce costs. In practice a combination of On Demand and Reserved Instances makes most sense.
Only pay for what you use
With Amazon RDS you can avoid capital expenditure on servers that may only get used occasionally. Instead you launch database instances when you need them and pay for the storage, compute power and memory you need at that time.
Reduce your IT costs
With Amazon RDS your IT Administration tasks and costs are both significantly reduced. Provisioning, set up, patching, backups and even Disaster Recovery are all handled through the managed service.
Reduced security concerns
The highly secure environment that Amazon AWS provides reduces your Admin overheads significantly.
Operatng within a Virtual Private Cloud provides the reassurances you and your business need.
Amazon RDS Consultancy & Development experts
If you are considering moving your environment to the cloud then you will be rightly concerned about how exactly that can be achieved. How do you move your environment without risk, what processing power will you need, how can you identify when it's time to Scale Up or Scale Out?
Our team of AWS RDS developers and AWS consultants have been there before and are here to help you make that move. We can move you and implement the strategies required to ensure you use Amazon RDA and AWS effectively.
What instance type do you need, when is it right to Scale Up and when is it right to Scale Out. We have the answers to all you Amazon RDS and business growth questions. Call our AWS RDS consultants today.