Increase security with the click of a button!

Although at easytocloud we prefer to build serverless solutions wherever we can, we do have some EC2 instances and use a bastion host to access our – predominantly private – EC2 instances. In an earlier posting you could read how we use our EC2 scheduler to stop and start our persistent instances based on the time of the day. The cost-savings of running an instance only during office-hours is a whopping 75% compared to leaving instances on ‘all the time’. As for our bastion host, not only does it reduce costs, it also increases security. The bastion host being the only way into our AWS infra as (most) other instances do not even have… Read More

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Alexa, Lambda & One Time Passwords – A match made in heaven

By now, you must have heard of the amazing Amazon Echo devices; smart speaker/microphone devices backed up by the Alexa voice service. Now, the cool thing is you can build your own skills quite easily. Register as a developer and start building your custom skill so your Echo reacts to things like “what’s up for dinner?” or maybe something more useful. Your custom skill does require some programming but where to host this? Sounds event-driven… And yes, your custom skill can be implemented as a Lambda function running on AWS; reliable, scalable and only consuming resources when actually invoked. So what shall we build? Since we are well into AWS anyway, we’ve choosen… Read More

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Visualize EC2 Performance and Pricing

As a Unix expert, I used to think everything is a file. Now I know better: everything is an API (or should be). AWS took this to the max by even disclosing their prices and specifications through an API. That allows us to write code that presents the EC2 specs and prices in a whole new way. We ingest the AWS specs and prices daily and store it in a bucket for future reference. When you direct your browser to http://selec2or.info you get a view on this data. Hitting the big green ‘graphics’ button changes the view. From the traditional ‘table’ view we have got used to over the last hundreds… Read More

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