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JHC Technology is a Service Disabled, Veteran-Owned, Small Business based in the Washington, DC Metro area. Our primary focus is to offer customized solutions and IT consulting to our Commercial and Government clients. Our experts have a broad experience delivering and managing Microsoft Enterprise applications and Cloud and Virtualization Solutions, as well as mobilizing Enterprise data.

Friday, October 25, 2013

JHC Technology's Best Practices for Amazon Web Services

JHC Technology has utilizing Amazon Web Services (AWS) since its beginning in 2010, and is now an Authorized Government Partner, an Advanced Consulting Partner and a Channel Reseller for AWS. 

Not only do we recommend AWS as the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform for our clients but I am happy to say that JHC has never purchased any datacenter equipment/infrastructure for our internal systems or operations.  

All JHC infrastructure has been deployed in the AWS cloud platform since we started to include:  
  • Blackberry Enterprise Server, 
  • Exchange
  • SharePoint
  • Active Directory
  • Citrix
  • Test/Development environments

Through the course of the last three years, I have been mentally drawing up a list of JHC best practices for deploying solutions/datacenter operations on the Amazon Web Services platform.   Below are a few examples:
  • Fail quickly, often, and cheaply.
  • Architect a Zero Trust Model for your AWS Solution.
  • Own your AWS accounts and use consolidated billing with a trusted AWS reseller.
  • Design for Disaster Recovery and High Availability for both AWS infrastructure and applications deployed on AWS infrastructure.
  • Utilize AWS Storage Gate, S3, and Glacier for full lifecycle backup and restores.
  • Put in place least privilege administration security policies for AWS Identity and Access Management.
  • Do not take a cloud and/or Infrastructure as a Service only posture.  Consider hybrid Cloud solutions that utilize on premise infrastructure, Platform as a service, and/or Software as a Service that integrate with your AWS solution.
  • Architect for least viable solution and use business rules to auto scale up and down.
  • Deploy your Development and User Acceptance Testing environments on AWS.  Design solution to turn on environments only when needed and automate shut down of environments.
  • Deploy your infrastructure inside Virtual Private Cloud that crosses multiple availability zones within an AWS region.
  • Decouple compute and storage when possible but realize that most clients’ applications can’t be deployed in this manner.  Consider deploying legacy applications inside AWS and provide roadmap for refactoring to make application more AWS cloud friendly/efficient.
James Hirmas is the CEO for JHC Technology.  He can be reached at jhirmas(at)jhctechnology.com,@JHC_JamesHirmas, or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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