Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a cloud computing service that provides hosting and storage of data, applications, and other services. AWS CloudFormation is a template-driven engine for provisioning new IT infrastructures, such as Amazon EC2 instances or Amazon S3 buckets. These templates can be used to create the “infrastructure as code” to deploy an application with repeatable success. It also helps you save time by providing preconfigured components like security groups and VPCs that are ready to use when composing your stack. This blog will cover how easy it is to get started with AWS CloudFormation!
What is AWS CloudFormation?
AWS CloudFormation is an infrastructure as code service by Amazon Web Services (AWS), available at no cost. It allows users to create collections of related AWS resources and provision them in an orderly and predictable fashion. Its main benefits are that it encourages users to document their architectures using templates, provides the ability to deploy new versions into production with minimal downtime, and enables applications to be deployed on multiple regions for high availability.
AWS CloudFormation is an infrastructure management service. It allows you to provision and manage a collection of related AWS resources, such as Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances and Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) buckets.
CloudFormation provides a single interface for launching and managing instances and other resources in an orderly and predictable fashion. By allowing you to configure your entire application stack through a simple JSON or YAML template, CloudFormation eliminates the need for most manual instance configuration tasks that would otherwise require SSH access to each instance.
Why do we need to learn CloudFormation?
Now, we know what cloud formation is. “Why should I care about it?” you might be wondering. I’m pleased if you asked this from the start.
“You don’t have to,” I would tell you the truth. This is because if your company or business is utilizing Elastic Beanstalk — which means the infrastructure is automatically maintained. You don’t need to understand it much.
However, this appears to be too good to be true because there are still many businesses that enjoy having complete control and flexibility over their infrastructure.
CloudFormation will help you to manage your AWS infrastructure. If you are required to manage your AWS infrastructure, then it is best to learn about CloudFormation since it provides many benefits.
- **Simplify your infrastructure management **- Within a code template, your whole infrastructure is managed.
- Quick Replication of infrastructure — The EBS volumes on AWS are region-based. So, if you want to maintain the same infrastructure in both the US – Ohio and Singapore, you’ll need to replicate all of your resources. CloudFormation comes in handy with this.
You know the reasons for learning this. Now, we will go into the first tutorial.
Let’s create CloudFormation
- Sign in to AWS Management Console and enter “CloudFormation” in the search field.
- You will see the CloudFormation dashboard.
- On the left, click Stacks.
- Click on Create stack.
- For all CloudFormation templates to work correctly, please select region North Virginia us-east-1.
- As you can see, the templates are ready so please click on Template is ready.
- Our next step will be to upload a template file by selecting Upload a Template File and choosing the file to upload
- Click on Next.
- The second step is to name the stack “first-stack”.
- As of right now, we don’t have any parameters; click Next.
- In step3 we don’t have Tags and also no specific permissions, leave the options as default
- Click on Next.
- In step 4 you can see a template URL that we have uploaded to CloudFormation.
- Scroll down and click on Create Stack.
- Now this will go ahead and will create our first CloudFormation stack.
- It will take a few minutes to create a stack.
- You will see that the new instance is created when you refresh the page after a few minutes.
- You can see an instance created by clicking on Services > EC2.
- When you select that instance and click on Tags, you will see some CloudFormation information.
- You can access the EC2 instance by clicking on the ‘Resources’ tab. This shows everything that was created by our CloudFormation stack.
- The template we used to create the stack can be found on the Templates tab.
- For a visual representation, click View in Designer.
Congratulations!! You have created your first CloudFormation stack and an EC2 instance for us, and we are starting to see the potential of Infrastructure as a Code.
CloudFormation is a service that optimizes the use of AWS. It’s an easy way to deploy and manage applications on top of your existing EC2 instances, without having to worry about managing infrastructure or configuration management software. With just a few clicks in our console, you can provide all the resources that are needed for deployment with minimal code required from developers. We have many other blog posts and training courses available if you want more information on various AWS technologies!