Tag Archives: S3

Scalr – A RightScale Alternative for Cheap!?

I came across Scalr by accident when I was browsing projects in Google Code.  It appears as though Scalr has become a pay service to manage your AWS instances along similar lines to RightScale.  But the main difference is that Scalr charges a scant $50 a month.  From the Scalr Google Code page:

Scalr is a fully redundant, self-curing and self-scaling hosting environment utilizing Amazon’s EC2.

It allows you to create server farms through a web-based interface using prebuilt AMI’s for load balancers (pound or nginx), app servers (apache, others), databases (mysql master-slave, others), and a generic AMI to build on top of.

The health of the farm is continuously monitored and maintained. When the Load Average on a type of node goes above a configurable threshold a new node is inserted into the farm to spread the load and the cluster is reconfigured. When a node crashes a new machine of that type is inserted into the farm to replace it.

Multiple AMI’s are provided for load balancers, mysql databases, application servers, and a generic base image to customize. Scalr allows you to further customize each image, bundle the image and use that for future nodes that are inserted into the farm. You can make changes to one machine and use that for a specific type of node. New machines of this type will be brought online to meet current levels and the old machines are terminated one by one.

I would love to hear some comments from those already using the service and how it compares to RightScale.

Using OpenVPN to Manage Multisourced Infrastructure

Saw this article when looking for information on using OpenVPN with Amazon Web Services.  It is not exactly what I am looking to do with my latest project.  But it is some good helpful information for those with existing infrastructure looking to use AWS.  There is also VPN-Cubed which is another option if looking for a supported product.  I have not used it but would love to hear some comments by those who have.

Managing EC2 Configurations Using SVN

I am a big fan of using Subversion for things other than just versioning code.  In the past I have used SVN to manage configuration files across many servers.  Making it easy to deploy and (if needed) roll back changes.  It is also a big help on development servers for PHP developers to commit changes and see them live on the development server.  This is easily accomplished using SVN hooks.  There are plenty of HowTos on this topic if seeking that information.

Now that I am up to my eyeballs in Amazon Web Services I am looking to use SVN to help me leverage the new found power of the cloud.  Now I am not saying it is a good thing to use SVN for things other than code versioning.  But it has always worked for me in many other ways as well.

Some of the things I am thinking of using SVN:

  • Update DEV web server using hook scripts for devs to see changes to trunk.
  • Maintain Apache and other config files for AMIs.
  • Maintain code repository for versioning along with take advantage of S3 for backup and processing power of EC2.

This is a work in progress so I am looking to perfect the design to my liking soon.