What is AWS CloudFormation?
Human needs are never-ending. The desires are never satisfied. Humans believe that there is always room for development which, in fact, is true. We have travelled a long journey of technological development. Today, we live in a world where innovations and creations take place every day. Everyone is dedicated to easing out the prevailing lifestyle. Technology is the result of human curiosity. Trying to fill up that room for development, we have come across various great discoveries and innovations. The room gets bigger as we go higher on the ladder of development. This increase in space led us to develop a technology to ease out existing technology. Bringing forth, AWS CloudFormation – technology to ease out existing technology.
What is AWS CloudFormation?
CloudFormation from AWS is a service that eases out creation, provision, and management of AWS and third-party resources. Quick creation and consistent management are the key motives of this technology.
CloudFormation enables you to manage AWS resources in a text file. It uses templates that describe our desired resources. The management of these resources can be done all together by creating, updating, or deleting a single stack instead of individual resources.
CloudFormation allows you to manage and provision stacks across multiple AWS accounts and AWS Regions. It has given an easy way to developers and businesses for creating and managing resources.
CloudFormation takes all the responsibility once you define resources in templates and create stacks for their management. Saving the resources in the form of text makes it easier to update and delete them without messing up the entire software or the application.
CloudFormation, today, stands as the simplest way of creating, updating, and deleting the resources of the application. It eliminates the unnecessary time consumed for making a small change in the application of the software.
CloudFormation is an answer to the complex technology practices that made it hard for you to function with the fast pace of the world.
Working of CloudFormation
AWS CloudFormation only works for the instances that it is permitted to. While creating a stack, it asks AWS to provision and configures the resources that were created using templates earlier. The following steps will give a detailed knowledge on how AWS CloudFormation works.
The foremost step includes the creation of a new template or the use of an already existing template to create resources. The template will describe the resources required and their properties in accordance with the requirement itself.
The second step in the working of AWS CloudFormation saves the described resources and their setting in the form of a template locally or in the S3 bucket. Already existing template is already saved but if a new template is created then it is saved with a file extension like. json, .yaml, .template, or .txt.
The third step involves the creation of stacks by using the console, API, or AWS CLI. We need to specify the path of our template file saved in the second step. Parameters in a template are a great advantage during the creation of a stack. These parameters allow us to input values in the template which is beneficial for customizing the resources every time we create a stack.
The main steps have been completed in the above points that define the working of AWS CloudFormation. After these steps, CloudFormation asks AWS to provision and configure the resources described in the template. One can start using their resources in the stack after provision and configuration.
Need for AWS CloudFormation
AWS CloudFormation is a technology that eases out already existing technology. It is a platform that provides the tools required to create and manage AWS resources.
To catch the pace of the growing technology, it is required to build a platform for quick and consistent creation and management of resources used to provision software applications.
AWS CloudFormation does not only create the resources but also manages them in a way that they prove to be reliable, upgradeable, and available.
It is easy to use as it is designed to ease out the activities it performs. CloudFormation is convenient, secure, easy to use, quick, consistent, and has the tendency to make a big change in the working of prevailing technology practices.
It saves the values that are required in the template and then CloudFormation takes care of the rest once it is permitted to. We don’t need to memorize any values or information for the creation of resources as it is already saved in the template.
Working concepts of AWS CloudFormation
The working concepts of AWS CloudFormation are categorized under 3 heads namely Templates, Stacks, and Change sets. Let’s understand them one by one in the following points.
The working of CloudFormation starts with the creation of templates. There are sample templates too which can be used for the creation of resources. Pre-defined resources and their settings are described in the template and saved with the file extensions like .json, .text, .yaml, or .template. Templates can be saved locally in the device or in the S3 bucket of Amazon. CloudFormation templates have a tendency of adding input parameters whose value is specified while creating a stack instead of the template. Since the template is the base of the resources, further complex changes are not possible in a template therefore, adding values in stacks makes it possible to reuse the template or make changes in the resources.
Stacks are used to managing the resources described in the template. Creation, updating, and deletion of resources are managed through the creation, updating, and deletion of a stack. Keeping template as the base, stacks are defined by CloudFormation templates. By submitting the templates, stacks are created using the described resources in it. The provision of these resources is done by using the CloudFormation console, API, or AWS CLI.
Change sets are the summary of the changes required in the resources. The timely or dynamic changes required in the application directly lead to a change in the resources used to create it. Before implementing, change sets allow us to see the impact of the updates on the running resources. This is a great way of making an update in the resources without having to mess up the entire application.
AWS CloudFormation is the easiest and the most convenient approach to creating and managing resources for your software application. Templates and Stacks are the essences of CloudFormation. They are the base and the result of CloudFormation simultaneously. They require each other to function. Templates are useless without stack ad stacks can’t be created without templates. Change sets deliver one of the most cherished qualities of CloudFormation. Change Sets make changes in the running resources possible. CloudFormation is the latest technology easing out already existing technology.
AWS CloudFormation FAQs
Q 1) Why can’t I name all my resources?
- Naming a resource restricts you to reuse a template. Since the resources will be names, further changes in the resources will cause conflicts and will be difficult to reuse the template. Therefore, CloudFormation allows us to name resources case vice.
Q 2) How can I manage outside resources in CloudFormation?
- Using Resource import, one can import the already existing resource from outside and manage it in CloudFormation like the ones created in CloudFormation.
Q 3) Can I save my data when the stack is created?
- While creating resources in the template, CloudFormation allows us to define deletion policies of resources. One can easily save their data even when the stack is created.
Q 4) Can I update my stack after it has been created?
- CloudFormation is built to allow the creation, updating, and deletion of resources used to develop a software application. One can find the template that holds the required resource and update the stack to update that resource. It is very convenient to manage the resources with the presence of a platform like CloudFormation from AWS.
Q 5) Can I install software at stack creation time using AWS CloudFormation?
- Yes, by defining the install packages, files, and services on EC2 instances in the template, one can install software using the bootstrapping strips provided by CloudFormation.
The Bottom Line
Technology has become a necessity in our lives. In todays’ world, technology is our guide, buddy, resource, medium to gain knowledge, a helping hand, and it has changed our lifestyles. It has become a part of our lives. Every day brings in a flood of ideas leading towards the growth of the world of technology. Life is all about ups and downs. We live the bad phases working, wondering, and waiting for the good ones. When the good days arrive, we crave for even better ones and the chain goes on. The birth of technology took place on one of the bad phases. We achieved it and had a good time after it. Now, technology like CloudFormation of AWS is the phase that we crave even after the good ones. Our lives revolve around technology. Let’s live this phase with the same enthusiasm with which we waited for it and cherish the creation of someone’s artistic world.
If you want to stand out in this race of technology adoption and creation, we are here to help. Get in Touch!