re:Invent AWS 2016 – Top Takeaways

reInvent3When he spoke about protection as a top priority at this year’s re:Invent AWS conference in Las Vegas, AWS CTO and keynote speaker Werner Vogels did not mince words. As Vogels said, “I really believe that you have no business on the Internet if you do not make protection of your customers a top priority. We are responsible for the security of the cloud. And fortunately, we innovate rapidly so you have the tools to protect your business in the cloud”.

AWS Rapid Delivery: A Flurry of New Announcements

Protection was only one of the many AWS announcements and new offerings at this year’s event. Amazon detailed more than two dozen new capabilities for the public cloud. These included building code as part of deployment pipelines, directly querying data in S3 object storage and the ability to provision inexpensive virtual private servers.

AWS announced several new EC2 instances as well, along with new artificial intelligence offerings that included three different tools launched under the Amazon AI umbrella, and new data offerings including more than 1,000 new updates and features in 2016. With all of this, AWS clearly seems to be increasing the gap with their competition, and making even more headway in the cloud marketplace.

Things also got interesting when AWS CEO Andy Jassy fired back at Oracle’s Larry Ellison, in response to Ellison’s recent criticism of Amazon’s cloud service. Among other things, Jassy emphasized Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report last year that said that AWS is 10 times bigger than its next biggest competitors combined. Jassy also noted that Amazon’s functionality, partner and customer ecosystem and cloud computing experience make the company second to none for providing today’s cloud market services.

New AWS Tools for Data Migration and Compatibility

Data migration and compatibility were also a major theme at this year’s event. In his keynote address, Jassy discussed Snowball, a data transport solution that uses secure appliances to migrate large amounts of data into and out of the AWS cloud. Jassy announced Snowball Edge as well, which has increased capacity (100 TB versus Snowball’s 50 TB); stand-alone storage capabilities; an S3 endpoint that allows for syncing data with S3 while loading it; and integrated device encryption.

Jassy also discussed the incredible success of Amazon Aurora, and announced that it would be compatible with PostgreSQL. Aurora, one of AWS’ fastest-growing services, is now fully compatible with both PostgreSQL and MySQL, and will simplify the process of migrating PostgreSQL databases from RDS to Aurora. Aurora offers up to five times the performance of MySQL, at one-tenth the cost.

Amazon also announced Greengrass, which allows customers to securely run AWS messaging, compute, sync capabilities and data caching on connected devices. AWS Greengrass allows devices to run AWS Lambda functions to perform tasks locally, keep device data in sync, and securely communicate with other devices – while leveraging the full processing, analytics, and storage power of the AWS Cloud. AWS feels that the Greengrass service will help overcome some of the limitations of the current IoT model.

Summary

re:Invent AWS has experienced amazing growth over the years – from just a few thousand attendees in the past, to 32,000 this year. The event was a huge success for N2WS as well. Traffic to our booth was excellent…we had great traction, and ended up with over 3,000 visitors coming to our booth to learn about Cloud Protection Manager (CPM)!

We truly believe that being a part of the Amazon Partner Network has been a big help in making this happen. N2WS solutions such as CPM help support many of the AWS initiatives announced at this year’s event – particularly those related to backup, data protection and security. CPM provides enterprises with flexible backup policies and scheduling, rapid recovery of instances, and a simple, intuitive and user-friendly web interface to easily manage backup operations. All communication with the CPM server is encrypted (HTTPS, SSH). And the CPM database is in complete control of the user, with AWS credentials never passed in clear text and secret keys encrypted in the CPM database.

CPM has a Windows agent to consistently back up Windows applications, and allows users to manage multiple AWS accounts and configure policies and schedules to take automated snapshot backups. With CPM, you can recover volume from a snapshot, increase its size and switch it with an existing attached volume in a single step.

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