Amazon, best known for online sales of thousands of items, is making Amazon Aurora, its MySQL-compatible database engine, available to customers in three regions. These are the U.S. West, U.S. East and the European Union.
Formerly, the engine had only been available to a thousand companies participating in a review of the technology. These include Alfresco, Zumba and Earth Networks, among others. These and many other companies had favorable reviews of Aurora.
Amazon Aurora was created to provide database services comparable in price to open source databases, but with the scalability, durability and reliability of the commercial databases. Current Amazon RDS (Relational Data Service) customers can quickly convert to the new system.
Raju Gulabani, Vice President, Amazon Database Services, AWS explains:
“Today’s commercial-grade databases are expensive, proprietary, high lock-in, and come with punitive licensing terms that these database providers are comfortable employing. It’s why we rarely meet enterprises who aren’t looking to escape from their commercial-grade database solution. Now, with Amazon Aurora, companies can get at least the same availability, durability, and security as commercial-grade databases for one-tenth of the cost.”
Edward Wong, Solutions Architect of Pacific Gas & Electric, which participated in the trial, says:
“At PG&E, we’re very focused on availability; when our databases are down, it adversely affects service to our gas and electrical customers. Using Amazon Aurora, we can run many replicas with millisecond latency. This means during a power event we can handle large surges in traffic and still give our customers timely, up-to-date information. In addition, spreading these replicas across multiple AWS Availability Zones with automatic failover gives us confidence that our databases will be there when we need them.”
Amazon Aurora appears to be built with redundancies or backups. Data is continually backed up to Amazon Simple Storage Service (AS3). If the database currently being worked on fails for any reason, a backup will automatically restore data in 60 seconds.
Amazon Aurora appears to full a niche admirably, a much desired product with a richly performing database program at low cost. For those already using Amazon RDS for MySQL see details on how to make the switch to Aurora on Amazon Web Services blog by Jeff Barr.
To get started with Amazon Aurora, visit http://aws.amazon.com/rds/aurora.
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Thanks for writing this article and alerting us all to this option for database services. Although I no longer work in a corporate world I remember that we were always forced down the MS SQL Server route which always seemed seriously expensive.
If Aurora really is going to be one tenth the cost of those types of systems then it’s enough of a reason to consider it, but with the auto backup and failover it would seem to me that it’d be a no-brainer to go with Aurora.