Tuesday, 23 October 2012

AWS Week in Review - October 8th to October 14th, 2012


Let's take a quick look at what happened in AWS-land last week:

Monday, October 8
Tuesday, October 9
Wednesday, October 10
Thursday, October 11
Friday, October 12
Sunday, October 14


AWS Week in Review - October 15th to October 21st, 2012

Sunday, 14 October 2012

MindMap – Cloud Computing Vendor Ecosystem 2012

Click on IMAGE to Open Flash File which will allow you to navigate through all Nodes…

Cloud Vendors Ecosystem

Source: http://up-con.com/vote

Reblogged from clean-clouds.com

INFOGRAPHIC: Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Cloud?

A really thoughtful infographic from CA Technologies’ CloudViews, based on a recent survey of IT leaders. 

It shows just how and why some companies have been slow to adapt Cloud Computing.

To read the complete story, CLICK HERE 


Reblogged from yoyoclouds.com

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Infographic : Innovations on Campus

The infographic focuses on the technologies used by the 10 winning projects of the 2012 Innovators Awards.

Innovations on Campus
Put Together By: OnlineUniversities.com

AWS Week in Review - October 1st to October 7th, 2012


Let's take a quick look at what happened in AWS-land last week:

Monday, October 1
Tuesday, October 2
Wednesday, October 3
Thursday, October 4
Friday, October 5
Sunday, October 7


Infographic : Going BYOD

Going BYOD
Presented By: OnlineColleges.net

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Infographic : How Big Data is Changing the College Experience

How Big Data is Changing the College Experience
Presented By: OnlineDegrees.org

Infographic : How Safe is Your PIN ?

Since PIN guessing and hacking has been all over the news lately, we decided to take a comprehensive look at everything you should know about PINs and PIN safety - including some background, best practices and most/least common PINs.

How Safe Is Your PIN?
Compiled by: BackgroundCheck.org

Friday, 5 October 2012

VMware vCloud Service - Creating vApp

Another very nicely detailed post by yoyoclouds.com

In previous post of this series we saw how to create an account for VMware vCloud Service Evaluation using a Promo Code.
[...]Assuming that you have received your Username and Password for vCloud service evaluation via e-mail, we can now start by creating our first vApp !!
Login to your vCloud (https://vcloudservice.vmware.com) using the Administrative Username and Password :

Once you logged in, Select the "My Cloud Tab". This tab will display the VMs and vApps that you will create from now onwards.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Infographic: Which Country Uses The Internet Best?

According to a recent study, not only does the US have a lower percentage of households with personal computers, but also offers slower bandwidth per user than countries such as Canada, Ireland, Sweden, Japan, and others. So, which country uses the Internet best? 

Who Uses the Internet Best?
From: OEDb.org

VMware vCloud Service- Getting started

VMware vCloud Service - Part 1 Getting Started

As per VMware's Definition: "A vCloud Service Evaluation is the best way to experience how VMware can add infrastructure capacity within minutes without needing to purchase the capacity as capital expense yourself. It also provides the opportunity to learn how easy it is to administer workloads between environments of choice. The vCloud Service Evaluation includes an extremely flexible, on-demand, self-service public cloud service that allows for seamless migration of workloads between your existing cloud environment, the vCloud Service Evaluation, and VMware’s ecosystem of service providers (in conjunction with your internal vSphere environment)."
Want a simple one-liner? Refer the definition by yoyoclouds.com here
"A vCloud Service Evaluation is VMware's attempt (and may I add a good one !!) to creating a self-service, self-managed, automated, pay-per-use model based Public Cloud"

With vCloud Service Evaluation, you can:

  • Access your cloud through the “vCloud Service Evaluation Console”, an example of a customized user interface based on vCloud technology, and utilize virtual servers from a shared resource pool for a low hourly cost.

  • Enjoy a turnkey experience by deploying VMs or application
    templates in a matter of minutes. With VMware Virtual Appliances or vApps, you have the ability to provision multi-tier applications without manual configuration. You’ll also have unlimited access to pre-packaged infrastructure and application templates.

When you get started with the vCloud Service Evaluation, you will be using a public cloud that offers you:

  • Redundancy - If hardware that is powering your VMs fails, your VMs will be automatically moved to a new set of resources, regardless of operating system or underlying hardware configuration.

  • Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS) – DRS enables your cluster to be properly balanced with the workloads running upon it. DRS automatically keeps physical hosts and clusters running smoothly by moving workloads off if they can be better used on different ‘less busy’ hosts.

  • vCloud Networking & Security - VMware vCloud Networking & Security Edge firewall control is built in, so no need to add a 3rd party firewall.

  • API - The vCloud API is your interface to building new management solutions and integrating existing ones with VMware cloud infrastructure. 

  • vApps - We provide a library of predefined vApps, or create your own. vApps (or “Virtual Appliances”) are a grouping of virtual machines that allow you to start, stop, reboot and even destroy your virtual machines with just a click or two.

  • Bandwidth – The vCloud Service Evaluation offers unlimited inbound bandwidth, and free outbound bandwidth up to 1TB.

  • IPs – We offer you a pool of public and private IP addresses OS Templates – We offer both Windows and Linux.

  • Application Templates – We offer a suite of application templates that greatly simplify development and testing of popular web applications.

Getting Started with the vCloud Service Evaluation

It’s very simple to begin your vCloud Service Evaluation. With just a few clicks, your account will be provisioned and ready to use in minutes.

Setting up your vCloud Service Evaluation account:

1. Visit http://vcloud.vmware.com/evaluate-cloud
2. Click the "Join Our Beta" button
vmware vCloud service evaluation beta

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Get Started With Oracle Applications Now With Our New Test Drive Program

AWS has just launched Oracle Test Drive Labs.
The purpose of the Oracle Test Drive program is to provide customers with the ability to quickly and easily explore the benefits of using Oracle software on AWSserver infrastructure.
These labs have been developed by Oracle and AWS partners and are provided free of charge for educational and demonstration purposes.
Each Test Drive lab includes up to 5 hours of complimentary AWS server time to complete the lab, and you can return here and to try any or all of the Test drive Labs at any time, so feel free to experiment and explore!
Please note that there may be some pre-requisitesfor few labs. Kindly understand them, acquire the required accounts or softwares before proceeding with the labs.

For example, Oracle Secure Backup to S3 requires Oracle Technet (OTN) account.
The products vary from Oracle products for Database and Infrastructure, Oracle Applications and Oracle Fusion Middleware.
We can select from nearly a dozen labs which include but are not limited to: 

  • Oracle Data Guard Disaster Recovery
  • Oracle Secure Backup to S3
  • Siebel on AWS

Read below post by Jeff for sample demo of back up Oracle database to AWS using the Oracle Secure Backup product.

One of the key advantages that customers and partners are telling us they really appreciate about AWS is its unique ability to cut down the time required to evaluate new software stacks. These "solution appliances" can now be easily deployed on AWS and evaluated by customers in hours or days, rather than in weeks or months, as is the norm with the previous generation of IT infrastructure.
With this in mind, AWS has teamed up with leading Oracle ecosystem partners on a new initiative called the Oracle Test Drive program.

Amazon RDS - Now Available in the AWS Free Usage Tier

Good News!!!

AWS has announced AWS RDS Support in AWS Free Usage Tier. Prior to this, AWS only supported AWS RDS - SQL Server in Free tier, such as:

AWS RDS Free Tier old

But starting today, AWS has announced support for all databases of AWS RDS :

AWS RDS Free Tier new
Starting October 1st, 2012

* These free tiers are only available to new AWS customers, and are available for 12 months following your AWS sign-up date. When your free usage expires or if your application use exceeds the free usage tiers, you simply pay standard, pay-as-you-go service rates (see each service page for full pricing details). Restrictions apply; see offer terms for more details.

Amazon RDS free tier is currently not available in VPC.

Read below abstract from Jeff's post on AWS Blog :

[...]  Our customers appreciate the fact that they can launch DB Instances on demand at very affordable hourly rates, with the option to purchase Reserved DB Instances to reduce their costs even more. Here's a video (featuring Biswaroop Palit of the Amazon RDS team) with more information about what RDS is and how it will simplify your life:

We are now adding RDS to the AWS Free Usage Tier. New AWS customers (see the AWS Free Usage Tier FAQ for eligibility details) can use the MySQL, Oracle (BYOL licensing model), or SQL Server database engines on a Micro DB Instance for up to 750 hours per month, along with 20 GB of database storage, 10 million I/Os and 20 GB of backup storage. When you combine this new capability with the existing EC2 usage available on the Free Usage Tier, you may be to build and run a complete multi-tiered web application without spending a penny. Here's another video with more information on this important new development:

In order to help you to get the most from Amazon RDS on Oracle, we'll be hosting a free RDS webinar at 10:00 AM (PT) on October 18th.
Attend the webinar to learn how RDS lets you focus on your business by addressing the key pain points that come with Oracle database administration.

AWS Week in Review - September 24th to September 28th, 2012

Let's take a quick look at what happened in AWS-land last week:

Monday, September 24
Tuesday, September 25
Wednesday, September 26
Thursday, September 27
Friday, September 28

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Infographic : Goals Behind Social Media Use

According to the latest data100% of colleges and universities surveyed are using some form of social media. But what are their goals behind social media use? We published an infographic today that breaks these goals down into the following categories: 

1. Increase awareness/advocacy/rankings
2. Engage current students/faculty/staff
3. Recruit students, engage admitted students/alumni
4. Crisis issues and management

Furthermore, we look at social media engagement by channels (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube) and measure their effectiveness.

Goals Behind Social Media Use

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Big Data & The Cloud

A good presentation by Joe Ziegler at the 5th Elephant conference in Bangalore.

View to know WHY Cloud is Big Data's BEST FRIEND !

Eucalyptus - An Overview of On-premise IaaS and AWS

Presentation from AWS Worldwide Public Sector team's conference Building and Securing Applications in the Cloud (http://aws.amazon.com/campaigns/building-securing-applications-cloud/).

Friday, 28 September 2012

Amazon RDS Now Supports SQL Server 2012

Want to try SQL Server 2012 ? Now dont invest in hardware and software. AWS RDS now supports SQL Server 2012 with easy to use interface and very affordable prices.

With added support for Microsoft SQL Server 2012, Amazon RDS customers can use the new features Microsoft has introduced as part of SQL Server 2012 including improvements to manageability, performance, programmability, and security.

Read more below extract from Jeff's Blog on the announcement :
The Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) now supports SQL Server 2012.You can now launch the Express, Web, and Standard Editions of this powerful database from the comfort of the AWS Management Console. SQL Server 2008 R2 is still available, as are multiple versions and editions of MySQL and Oracle Database.

If you are from the Microsoft world and haven't heard of RDS, here's the executive summary:

You can run the latest and greatest offering from Microsoft in a fully managed environment. RDS will install and patch the database, make backups, and detect and recover from failures. It will also provide you with a point-and-click environment to make it easy for you to scale your compute resources up and down as needed.

What's New?

SQL Server 2012 supports a number of new features including contained databases, columnstore indexes, sequences, and user-defined roles:

  • A contained database is isolated from other SQL Server databases including system databases such as "master." This isolation removes dependencies and simplifies the task of moving databases from one instance of SQL Server to another.
  • Columnstore indexes are used for data warehouse style queries. Used properly, they can greatly reduce memory consumption and I/O requests for large queries.
  • Sequences are counters that can be used in more than one table.
  • The new user-defined role management system allows users to create custom server roles.

Read the SQL Server What's New documentation to learn more about these and other features.

You can launch SQL Server 2012 from the AWS Management Console. First you select the edition that best meets your needs:

Then you fill in the details (SQL Server 2012 is version 11), and your DB Instance will be launched in a matter of minutes:

Yes, This is Cool!

You can now get started with SQL Server 2012 without having to invest in hardware or buying a license. If you are eligible for the AWS Free Usage Tier,  you can get started without spending a penny. You can launch a DB Instance, evaluate the product, do a trial migration of your data, and learn all about the new features at minimal cost. When the time comes to move your organization to SQL Server 2012, you'll already have experience using it in a real-world environment. 

For more information on what’s new in SQL Server 2012, please visit Microsoft’s SQL Server 2012 MSDN documentation.

To learn more about using RDS for SQL Server 2012, please visit the Amazon RDS for SQL Server detail page, AWS documentation and FAQs.

Get Started With the vCloud Service Evaluation Beta Today!

The Wait Is Over – Get Started With the vCloud Service Evaluation Beta Today!

Good news – the waitlist for the vCloud Service Evaluation Beta has been removed! This means that users can now sign up today and get a public vCloud account in 15 minutes or less.

Announced last month, the vCloud Service Evaluation provides a quick, easy and low-cost way for you to learn about the advantages of a vCloud though hands-on testing and experimentation. All you need to sign up is a credit card and you can get your own public vCloud up and running in minutes.

vmware vCloud service evaluation beta

The vCloud Service Evaluation has all the basics you need, including a catalog of useful VM templates, virtual networking, persistent storage, external IP addresses, firewalls, load balancers, the vCloud API, and more. A variety of pre-built content templates are also available (at no charge) through the vCloud Service Evaluation, including WordPress, Jommia!, Sugar CRM, LAMP stack, Windows Server, etc.

For a limited time, you can also use the promo code “VMworld50” for a $50 credit towards your vCloud environment.

Looking for support? Technical How-To Guides available on vCloud.VMware.com are perfect for new vCloud users looking for implementation assistance.

vmware vCloud service evaluation beta 

In addition, signing up for the vCloud Service Evaluation gives you access to the vCloud Service Evaluation Community, where users can ask questions and get answers directly from others in the vCloud community.

vmware vCloud service evaluation beta

Your own vCloud is just a few clicks away – sign up for the vCloud Service Evaluation Beta (don’t forget to use the promo code, “VMworld50”) and set up your own vCloud today!

Re-Blogged from VMware Blogs and yoyoclouds.com .

Installing AWS Command Line Tools from Amazon Downloads

A very well put up Blog on Installing AWS Command Line Tools from Amazon Downloads by Eric Hammond. Some useful extract from the Blog.

When you need an AWS command line toolset not provided by Ubuntu packages, you can download the tools directly from Amazon and install them locally.Unfortunately, Amazon does not have one single place where you can download all the command line tools for the various services, nor are all of the tools installed in the same way, nor do they all use the same format for accessing the AWS credentials.

The following steps show how to install and configure the AWS command line tools provided by Amazon [...]


Install required software packages:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install -y openjdk-6-jre ruby1.8-full libxml2-utils unzip cpanminus build-essential

Create a directory where all AWS tools will be installed:
sudo mkdir -p /usr/local/aws

Now we’re ready to start downloading and installing all of the individual software bundles that Amazon has released and made available in scattered places on their web site and various S3 buckets.
Download and Install AWS Command Line Tools

These steps should be done from an empty temporary directory so you can afterwards clean up all of the downloaded and unpacked files.

Note: Some of these download URLs always get the latest version and some tools have different URLs every time a new version is released. Click through on the tool link to find the latest [Download] URL.

EC2 API command line tools:
wget --quiet http://s3.amazonaws.com/ec2-downloads/ec2-api-tools.zip
unzip -qq ec2-api-tools.zip
sudo rsync -a --no-o --no-g ec2-api-tools-*/ /usr/local/aws/ec2/

EC2 AMI command line tools:
wget --quiet http://s3.amazonaws.com/ec2-downloads/ec2-ami-tools.zip
unzip -qq ec2-ami-tools.zip
sudo rsync -a --no-o --no-g ec2-ami-tools-*/ /usr/local/aws/ec2/

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Elastic Detector : Elastic Vulnerability Assessment


SecludIT developed a new approach to vulnerability assessment by using the elasticity of IaaS: Elastic Vulnerability Assessment - EVA.
Elastic Detector is Secludit's fully automated security event detection tool for Amazon EC2. 
It helps administrators and users of Amazon EC2-based infrastructures to continuously identify holes on security groups and applications, thus dramatically reducing the risk of external and internal attacks. 
It is Delivered as SaaS or Virtual Appliance (currently only running on US East Region).
In contrary to existing tools, you don’t need to install any additional software, such as agents, and do not need to configure any monitors up-front.
If you want to know more about Elastic Detector, watch the video below or try the service for free under elastic-detector.secludit.com.

AWS Announcement : High Performance Provisioned IOPS Storage For Amazon RDS

After announcing EBS Provisioned IOPS offering lately which allows you to specify both volume size and volume performance in term of number of I/O operations per second (IOPS),  AWS has now announced High Performance Provisioned IOPS Storage for Amazon RDS.
You can now create an RDS database instance and specify your desired level of IOPS in order to get more consistent throughput and performance.

Amazon RDS Provisioned IOPS is immediately available for new database instances in the US East (N. Virginia), US West (N. California), and EU West (Ireland) Regions and AWS plan to launch in other AWS Regions in the coming months.
AWs is rolling this out in two phases. Read on more the extract from the announcement on AWS Blog by Jeff.
                   We are rolling this out in two stages. Here's the plan:
  • Effective immediately, you can provision new RDS database instances with 1,000 to 10,000 IOPS, and with 100GB to 1 TB of storage for MySQL and Oracle databases. If you are using SQL Server, the maximum IOPS you can provision is 7,000 IOPS. All other RDS features including Multi-AZ, Read Replicas, and the Virtual Private Cloud, are also supported.
  • In the near future, we plan to provide you with an automated way to migrate existing database instances to Provisioned IOPS storage for the MySQL and Oracle database engines. If you want to migrate an existing database instance to Provisioned IOPS storage immediately, you can export your data and re-import it into a new database instance equipped with Provisioned IOPS storage.

We expect database instances with RDS Provisioned IOPS to be used in demanding situations. For example, they are a perfect host for I/O-intensive transactional (OLTP) workloads.
We recommend that customers running production database workloads use Amazon RDS Provisioned IOPS for the best possible performance. (By the way, for mission critical OLTP workloads, you should also consider adding the Amazon RDS Multi-AZ option to improve availability.)

Check out the video with Rahul Pathak of the Amazon RDS team to learn more about this new feature and how some of AWS customers were using it:

Responses from AWS customers :

  • AWS customer Flipboard uses RDS to deliver billions of page flips each month to millions of mobile phone and tablet users. Sang Chi, Data Infrastructure Architect at Flipboard told us:
"We want to provide the best possible reading and content delivery experience for a rapidly growing base of users and publishers. This requires us not only to use a high performance database today but also to continue to improve our performance in the future. Throughput consistency is critical for our workloads. Based on results from our early testing, we are very excited about Amazon RDS Provisioned IOPS and the impact it will have on our ability to scale. We’re looking forward to scaling our database applications to tens of thousands of IOPS and achieving consistent throughput to improve the experience for our users."
  • AWS customer Shine Technologies uses RDS for Oracle to build complex solutions for enterprise customers. Adam Kierce, their Director said:
"Amazon RDS Provisioned IOPS provided a turbo-boost to our enterprise class database-backed applications. In the past, we have invested hundreds of days in time consuming and costly code based performance tuning, but with Amazon RDS Provisioned IOPS we were able to exceed those performance gains in a single day. We have demanding clients in the Energy, Telecommunication, Finance and Retail industries, and we fully expect to move all our Oracle backed products onto AWS using Amazon RDS for Oracle over the next 12 months. The increased performance of Amazon's RDS for Oracle with Provision IOPS is an absolute game changer, because it delivers more (performance) for less (cost)."