Cloud Connect live: Migrating your existing applications to the AWS Cloud

Jinesh Varia (@jinman) is doing a review of how to move applications to AWS after doing a review of the AWS infrastructure and services. What is immediately striking is how similar Amazon’s approach is to the CloudOps cloud migration services.

AWS Migration Phase 1: Cloud Assessment

This includes financial assessment, operating expense budgeting, security and compliance assessment, technical assessment (choosing the right candidate, migrating licensed products, identifying tools that can be reused, functional assessment).

Financial assessment: there is an AWS Simple Monthly Calculator and a whitepaper on the Economics of the AWS cloud which are available at

Security and Compliance assessment: AWS has many security certifications including SAS70, its important to determine risk tolerance, regulatory compliance requirements, intellectual property concerns. Jinesh points out that you own the data, not AWS. AWS simply provides the infrastructure. You also choose where to store the data and how to handle the encryption at rest and in transit. More details about the security considerations are here:

Migration suitability assessment: Create an application dependency and classification chart to identify candidates for migration. Sort application components by their security, performance and scalability requirements and the degree of coupling with other components and applications. Good candidates are loosely coupled. Marketing, content management, backup, log processing, development and staging, customer and partner facing systems tend to be easily justified use cases.

Know your objectives and your success criteria! Create a plan including a roadmap.

Hands on AWS lab

Jinesh is now running an AWS lab for attendees of the workshop. He created a Windows Server AMI (Amazon machine image) and we are walking through the steps of creating the AWS account, obtaining the access keys, provisioning and launching an EC2 instance based upon the AMI, using EBS for storage and resizing the storage on the fly, and finally snapshotting the running volumes to S3.

Elastic Beanstalk demonstration

Jinesh is doing a demonstation of Elastic Beanstalk…uploading a .war file and showing how this file goes into an S3 bucket and the system automatically creates an ELB (elastic load balancer), an autoscalaing group using EC2 Micro instances running Apache and Tomcat, EBS volumes with snapshots which store the data back on S3. It all happens automagically, behind the scenes. PHP and RoR support are apparently coming soon!