Programming for the Amazon EC2 cloud
We show you some techniques for harnessing the benefits of cloud technology.
Everyone is talking about the promise of cloud computing, but when it comes to implementation, some of the early adopters have simply deployed cloud services by copying older methods used in conventional environments. In fact, the cloud can do much more for you. Running sites on EC2 is easy, but really making use of the scalability and flexibility of cloud computing requires a new approach (Figure 1). In this article, I describe some techniques for building the benefits of cloud computing into your infrastructure. Although I use examples based on the Ruby language and Amazon's EC2 cloud environment, these concepts also apply to other languages and cloud vendors.
Keep It Static
In the cloud, you don't need everything to go through your server (even if it is virtual). You don't need a virtual server for serving files, managing queues, and storing shared data. Dedicated services can perform these tasks, and using them will help you get your applications working better in the cloud.
In this first example, you use an online storage service to host your static files. Because it takes an unnecessary load off of your web servers, online storage is good practice for any site operating within the cloud paradigm. In the case of the Amazon environment, the S3 service (Simple Storage Service) will play host to your static files.
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