Containers in AWS: The Alternative Way to Store Applications

Riko Rakhmanto

Containers in AWS: The Alternative Way to Store Applications

Containers and virtual machines (VM) are two of the most popular methods for application deployment. By helping our customers to understand the similarities and differences we can guide decisions around choosing the right method for their business.

Virtualisation is the process of running multiple virtual machines on the same hardware. It’s essentially creating virtual versions of real hardware and can be used to run a complete operating system.

This is both similar and different to containerization, in a sense that you are able to run multiple applications in an isolated environment with the same operating system, but only run a set of applications on a contained environment.

By having applications inside a container, applications can run with a component in an isolated environment. This means that your server can run multiple applications without the risk of one interfering with the other.

ECS (Elastic Container Service) is a managed service for running containers on AWS, it’s designed to make it easy to run applications in the cloud. Using ECS, you can easily deploy containers to host a simple website or run complex distributed microservices using thousands of containers. ECS integrates well with other AWS services such Identity and Access Management (IAM), Application Load Balancer (ALB) and Network Load Balancer (NLB) as well as CloudWatch, which is used for logging and monitoring.

Finding the right path

Organisations should consider using AWS ECS because as a pathway to containerisation. A major benefit of ECS is that customers can stay within their own VPC (Virtual Private Cloud), which means the same security boundary.

Using automation to set up a server means you save time and maintain consistency for each server build.

Application storage has evolved in many ways and the most notable impact for organisations is that they have plenty of storage options. This means they need to think carefully about what the best option is and whether or not it meets their business requirements.

For example, AWS provides S3 (Simple Service Storage) for object storage and has different options depending on the needs of an organisation. The Single Zone storage is used if you can accept lower availability, and Zone-Infrequent Access storage, and if you don’t need to access it frequently. Additionally, if an organisation doesn’t need immediate access, they can house their data in Glacier, which reduces the cost of storage significantly.

Scalability on AWS Kubernetes

Additionally the introduction of Kubernetes, an open-source orchestration platform for managing cloud workload, much like ECS, is available to be used with AWS.

This means that customers can run Kubernetes in both an on-premises environment and the cloud with a minor configuration change. Because Kubernetes is not cloud provider-dependent, Kubernetes customers have more options in deploying their applications. The combination of AWS and Kubernetes results in integrations of services with the customer receiving a highly secure and scalable.

Adopting a container

Containers are perfect for businesses who are looking for a solution that offers reliability, portability, versatility, and reproducibility in a virtual environment. This efficiency is what’s driving adoption and will see new developments continue to take place in containerisation.