Dear reader, I hope you are doing great. I am sure, you already know that , now a days cloud is the go to choice for all size of business to deploy their workload.
Your favorite applications such as Gmail, Netflix , Amazon prime, Dropbox, Reddit etc. are all in cloud.
And why not?
Cloud Computing offers numerous benefits as compared to the on premises server. And when it comes to cloud, I am a big fan of AWS and it’s vast range of services.
AWS or Amazon Web Services is a cloud service provider. It provides more then 200 services globally which can be used to develop scalable and cost effective cloud based applications.
AWS global infrastructure is vast and consists of 81 Availability Zones within 25 geographic regions around the world. They also have plans for 27 more Availability Zones and 9 more AWS Regions in Australia, Canada, India, Indonesia, Israel, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland, and United Arab Emirates (UAE)
One of the first and most important thing while executing your project in AWS cloud is to choose appropriate region. Well you don’t or should not choose it randomly. Rather there are factors to consider while choosing AWS region for your workload.
In case you are beginner and don’t know what a region or availability zone is, here is a small explanation.
Region as the name suggest is a physical location in the world where AWS has it’s cluster of data centers. Each group of logical data centers is an Availability Zone. Each AWS Region consists of multiple, isolated, and physically separate AZs within a geographic area.
Data center(S) -> Availability Zone -> Region
Regions are usually named after the geographic location it is located in. For example- Ireland
Availability zones are also isolated from each other and can help you deploy a highly available architecture by putting your servers in different availability zones. So that your app can even survive an AZ failure altogether.
When using AWS services, most of the services are region scoped and you need to choose a region to proceed with. you choose a region to store your data or to do computation. AWS always stores your data in your specified region and your data stays there as long as you want.
In today’s post, I will explain how to choose best region for your workload on AWS.
There are times when you have compliance requirement that data should stay in particular country or continent to abide by the local law. In this case this parameter is gonna override any other evaluation factor. You should choose appropriate region to meet the compliance requirement.
If your users belong to a specific location/area, it makes sense to deploy your workload in a region that is closer to your user base for lower latency/better performance.
Usually the nearer is the location , lower is the latency and better. However, I would suggest, not to go by just proximity rather do ping test on your servers to see which region gives lowest latency and choose accordingly.
Do you know that AWS services usually costs differently in different regions. AWS says “We charge more where our costs are more and vice versa“. Therefore, choosing a region that costs less can save you few bucks in case you don’t have any other requirement such as latency to your users or any regulatory /compliance requirement. Once you know your technology/services stack, use AWS price calculator and evaluate a region that costs you less.
When new services are launched they are usually launched in few bigger regions. And it makes sense as AWS takes time to test the service in different regions before rolling them out in all the regions.
For example if you use CloudShell which provides you a browser based shell where you can run command. At the moment it is only available in few regions mentioned in AWS page here
But it doesn’t mean that if it is not available in your region you can’t use it. Simply switch region to of the supported region and Voila !!!!
So feel free to use a region where the service you require is available.
In this post, We learnt about factors to consider when choosing your AWS region. When it comes to choosing the best region for your workload, there is no single answer. Instead, it varies based on your requirements such as latency , cost , service Availability or complaints requirements.
Hope that was clear enough for you to make decision. Feel free to let me know in case of questions on twitter.
For more such informative content, you can checkout my blog CloudKatha.