CloudWatch Custom Metrics for Windows Server

Posted on June 2, 2016 by Richa Pathak | Comments(0)

It’s not rare that users having requirements of sending custom metrics to CloudWatch. These metrics can be application based or server based. There are different ways we can send these metrics to CloudWatch like writing a simple PowerShell script and scheduling it in Task Scheduler to run periodically. Alternate way to accomplish this, which I personally find very easy is by making simple changes in EC2ConfigService in your windows instance. ADVANTAGES: It is very easy to implement. There is no need to write scripts which sometimes can be really lengthy. Task Scheduler is not required which in turn can save memory. Most Importantly, margin of making error is very less. Let’s take an example that you want to send Free disk and Memory utilization metrics to CloudWatch. PREREQUISITES: EC2Config version should be 2.2.5 or later. Create IAM user with following permissions. IMPLEMENTATION: 1. RDP into your windows instance and from the Start menu, click All Programs, and then click EC2ConfigService Settings. 2. Enable CloudWatch Logs Integration and click OK. 3. Go to C:Program FilesAmazonEc2ConfigServiceSettingsAWS.EC2.Windows.CloudWatch.json and replace below code in the file. 4. Go to Control PanelSystem and SecurityAdministrative ToolsSettings and restart EC2 Config service. And It’s done. You

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Getting Started with Kinesis Firehose

Posted on June 1, 2016 by CloudThat | Comments(1)

       In this fast growing world, humongous amount of data is being produced from all sources in every part of the world. It can be anything like logs from the machines, data produced from the traffic signals, data from the IoT devices, smart devices installed in homes/IT industries and a lot of other sources. After production of this vast amount of data, another problem arises of storing, configuring, managing and streaming of data. How to manage data which occupies storage, utilizes compute power, used for analysis is an important aspect for decision making? AWS has a solution to it. Amazon Kinesis streams is the service that you are looking for to stream the data.        Kinesis Streams will collect data form the source and stream to application for further analysis. The data is replicated across availability zones   for high availability and reliability of data. It can scale based on the incoming data. It can scale from megabytes to terabytes while streaming data. It loads data into stream using HTTPs, Kinesis Producer library, Kinesis Client Library and Kinesis Agent. Basically in Kinesis Streams the data is available up to 24 hours and can also be extended up till 7 days. Kinesis Streams resolved the problem of analysis, compute power and decision making. But, we still have a problem of storing the data. Since Kinesis Streams can only save data up to 24Hrs initially and can be saved till 7 days. What if we need to store the data for long??? What

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Establishing multi-site connectivity with Azure Virtual Networks

Posted on May 20, 2016 by Arman Koradia | Comments(0)

Recently, I designed an architecture for client application where we used Azure’s VNet-to-VNet connectivity for geo-redundancy. The requirement was such that they wanted to continue with their on-premises infrastructure, so we thought of it as DR (disaster recovery) solution. In the design we proposed Multi-Site connectivity as well, with VNet-to-VNet connectivity in Azure, you can connect two different VNets with each other. You can use this connectivity to connect two VNets across different regions or across different subscriptions. The question that comes to mind is “Why connect VNets?” So, connecting VNet is especially useful when you want to setup multi-tier applications with multiple virtual networks connected together with a strong isolation boundary and secure inter-tier communication within same region. This can also help you set up geo-replication or synchronization over a secure connection without going out over the internet. Connecting one Virtual Network with another is almost similar to connecting an on-premises network to Azure’s Virtual Network as both the connection uses a VPN gateway to provide a secure IPSec tunnel for data transfer. Are you new to VNet-to-VNet connectivity? If yes, click here to get more insight on VNet-to-VNet connectivity in Azure. Now, where can we include VNet connectivity?

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Install WordPress using AWS Codepipeline

Posted on May 17, 2016 by Amrendra Kumar | Comments(3)

In this blog we are going to show how we can install a WordPress with AWS Codepipeline. Before we begin the demo, let us brief you about the services which will be used. Amazon Web Services (AWS) is providing three services namely CodeCommit, CodeDeploy, CodePipeline as Developer Tools for the developers, which lets them to focus more on their application rather than deployment. CodeCommit hosts private Git repositories, lets we to store code securely. You can store anything, anytime and integrate with other AWS & third-party services. Files can be easily migrated from any Git-based repository to AWS CodeComit. CodeDeploy is developers service, which allows the users to deploy application (contains content such as code, web, scripts, etc). It helps in automated deployments, reduces downtime, have centralized control and easy to adopt. CodePipeline is a continuous delivery service, which lets you to automate your release process using your favorite tools such as Amazon S3, CodeCommit, AWS Elastic Beanstalk, AWS CodeDeploy and Jenkins as well. You can view the progress at a glance. It helps in speeding up delivery while improving quality. It contains many stages to test your code before releasing. Let’s begin with pre-requisites Working knowledge of Linux, Amazon EC2,

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10 Trial Questions for AWS SysOps Administrator – Associate Certification

Posted on May 5, 2016 by Sandhiya Mohandas | Comments(1)

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certification is fast becoming the must have certificates for any IT professional working with AWS. AWS SysOps Certification has attained as the most recommended certification for any System Administrator especially working with AWS.It is meant to be the perfect validation of technical expertise of system administration in AWS. This certification approves the experience of provisioning, operating and maintaining the AWS infrastructure. Here are some sample questions for AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate. Answers and explanation are provided for each question. If you need more clarification on the questions, feel free to comment below the post. Questions: 1)You have an Auto Scaling group associated with an Elastic Load Balancer (ELB). Instances launched via Auto Scaling group are being marked unhealthy by the ELB, but these unhealthy instances are not being terminated. What do you need to modify to ensure these instances marked unhealthy by ELB will be terminated and replaced? A. Change the thresholds set on the Auto Scaling group health check B. Add an Elastic Load Balancer health check to your Auto Scaling group C. Increase the value for the Health check interval set on the Elastic Load Balancer D. Change the health check set

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Preparing for Azure 70-532 Exam: Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions

Posted on April 22, 2016 by Jigar Pathak | Comments(4)

I’ve completed my MCSD: Azure Solutions Architect and I would like to share the experience with all of you. To become MCSD, you have to clear all three certifications offered by the Azure i.e. 70-532: Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions, 70-533: Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions and 70-534: Architecting Microsoft Solutions. In this article, I’m sharing information about 70-532: Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions exam, which rewarded me Microsoft Specialist: Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions Certification. This certification is developer oriented where developers validate their knowledge on Cloud by clearing this certification. Before discussing about 70-532, I would like to explain about the entire Azure certification track. As per the below illustration, you will get fair idea about which certification track is suitable as per your job role. Types of Azure Certification About Certification Exam This 70-532: Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions exam is targeted towards a Developer audience. In my experience, it was a very comprehensive and advanced exam with a lot of real-time use cases being converted to exam questions. To clear this certification, developer must have working experience on real-life projects, which involves developing applications on Azure. By having that experience, you will be able to  answer questions better. Below, we break

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Migration Tale of Databases – 6 Reasons to move from Oracle to Microsoft SQL

Posted on April 14, 2016 by Arzan A | Comments(0)

As far as I have seen, there are majorly two types of DBAs. The one who favor the Oracle and the others who favor Microsoft SQL. Each of the database systems are very well tested and designed with years of improvement done with experience. They share a long listing of similarities but also few differences which makes the software and system architects choose one from the two. This article doesn’t fall into discussing the differences between the two, but rather gives you a high level insight about the migration ideology behind moving the database workloads from Oracle to MS SQL. Why should I move my databases from Oracle to MS SQL? Does this question arise in your mind? Well, I can describe 6 reasons #1. Very limited cloud exposure of Oracle Systems. Cloud technology is the need of every organization today. Not necessary it is always a 100% migration case scenario but it can also be the case where cloud can be used as a part of hybrid implementation or disaster recovery site. With Microsoft SQL, we get options for implementing the database on cloud as well as on-premises. Even if the database is implemented on-premises, a very tight integration

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The revolution chip – ESP8266

Posted on April 14, 2016 by akashp | Comments(1)

  It looks like one has work dedicatedly with Arduino and decided to sit down on a Sunday afternoon to write his wish list to tooth fairy with everything he wanted to see in the next generation Micro Controller Unit, but instead of sending that wish list to Fairyland, it was sent to China, where the brilliant minds of Espressif materialized ESP2866, which come at a ridiculous price point of $3 – $6. Compared to the cost of Arduino’s Wi-Fi shield model, which cost you approximately $30!!! Now, lets talk about what is ESP8266? Well it is a tiny self-continued, low power and high performance system on chip (SoC) with the ability to communicate over TCP/IP network via antenna that’s etched on its circuit board (PCB). It comes with its own board processor, so it can actually function in complete autonomy, without an additional Arduino board. In the essence, it’s the Philosopher’s holy grail of the ‘Internet of Things’ age. In this article, I’ll explain the various factors for selection of variants available in the market and various factors required Lets Start!!! How to choose your ESP8266 Model? I know there many variations available in the market and it is

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Schedule and Configure Lambda to Notify you..

Posted on April 8, 2016 by Ashwin Ram | Comments(0)

In the era of Dev-ops, continuous integration and deployment,  AWS Lambda provides you with various features, that will help you automate your needs. Lambda  is a compute service from Amazon Web Services, which performs actions on various available services of AWS, based on the program code that you upload for execution. It can be triggered by events or with a scheduled event provided by CloudWatch. In this blog, we are going to see step-by-step process of Creating Lambda Function Integrating Lambda With CloudWatch (Scheduled Event) Creating SNS Topic and Subscriptions Integrating CloudWatch With SNS for Notification Why use Lambda? Lambda will be an effective solution, when there are events that are need to be performed in a periodic manner. It will also help in infrastructure automation. Example Use Cases. Taking AMIs or Snapshots in a regular interval of time. Adding 2 servers morning at 8.00am when no of servers running is lesser than 30. etc,. Cost Comparision For a scheduled running of a program that triggers the API’s, a dedicated Linux Cron machine is commonly used. Though the program runs few times a day, the instance must be running throughout the year. Cost of a (t1.micro) EC2 machine running for a

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Configuring VPN between the VPCs across regions/accounts

Posted on April 1, 2016 by CloudThat | Comments(1)

As AWS is the top player in cloud market, we see most of the organizations migrating their architectures to AWS. If you are familiar with AWS, you must be knowing that most of the services are region level like EC2, VPC, etc. Let’s say you have a complex architecture with instances running in different regions. In case you want your infrastructure spread across multiple regions, securely communicate with each other through an encrypted channel, a secure VPN tunnel would be the need of the hour. How would you plan and create a secure tunnel to connect multiple VPCs in different regions/account, which allows instances in different VPCs to seamlessly communicate with each other using private IP addresses? One of the best solutions for the above scenario is Openswan. Openswan is an opensource IPsec VPN implementation on Linux. For those who are new to networking, VPN stands for Virtual Private Network, used for connecting one or more networks. All data transferred through VPN is encrypted using different kind of encryption algorithms. Openswan uses IKE protocol for negotiation and authentication, packet encryption and decryption is performed by Linux kernel. In order to create a VPN tunnel to connect multiple VPCs, we use

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