AWS Startups Blog

A Startup’s Guide to AWS Services Series 4: Building Faster in the Cloud

As a founder, getting up and running on AWS, even knowing where to start can seem overwhelming. What services do you need? How do you build with best practices in mind? This series is your guide to getting started on AWS, from account setup and security, to choosing an operational model and database selection. Come explore the AWS cloud environment with us.

Rapidly building and delivering your application

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Build. Test. Deploy. Troubleshoot. Then, do it all again—for every single update. For a startup trying to build and deploy an application, the process can seem endless, with time to market an ever-receding horizon.

Luckily, automation and cloud-based resources can streamline the process. In Rapidly Building and Delivering Your Application, the fourth installment of The Startup Guide to AWS Services  video series, Principal Startup Solutions Architect Igor Geyfman identifies prefabricated code structures that streamline development. These can be combined with “templates for quick deployment and services to connect them to your broader build,” Geyfman explains. The startup decides when and where to use AWS technologies and services without upfront fees or a long-term contract.

First, startups need to build and manage an infrastructure. To do this effectively, Geyfman recommends separating development, staging, and production into different environments. The AWS Infrastructure as Code approach offers a consistent and repeatable infrastructure deployment. It has two routes to setting up the infrastructure: AWS CloudFormation or AWS Cloud Development Kit.

Next, users can build, test, and deploy the application automatically. AWS Code Pipeline automates the software release process, allowing for fast and reliable updates. This flexible delivery pipeline automatically runs the build–test–deploy process in response to code changes.

AWS Code Build is a continuous integration service for building, testing, and packaging. Users can compile source code, run tests, and produce deployable software packages. Geyfman suggests also using the AWS CodeDeploy service. By automating deployment to a variety of compute services, CodeDeploy streamlines the release of new features.

Once an application has been deployed, its performance needs to be monitored for what Geyfman calls “unexpected behavior in the environment.” Amazon CloudWatch is a service that monitors the system, while also providing data and analytics about the application for “visibility into how it’s performing.” Users can also set alarms to respond in a timely manner to issues that arise.

Prefabricated code structures, effective templates, and a strong mix of services can help your business progress by leaps and bounds. Put together, AWS helps startups grow and scale, with security oversight and analytics built right in.