AWS Lambda and the Serverless Cloud

AWS Lambda evolution and re:Invent 2015 news

Tim Wagner – general manager of AWS Lambda and AWS IoT at AWS – talked about how AWS Lambda – and the serverless cloud it spawned – have evolved since the service’s 2014 launch.

What AWS Lambda is and how it’s been evolving

First of all, AWS Lambda allows you to NOT think about servers. Which means you no longer have to deal with over/under capacity, deployments, scaling and fault tolerance, OS or language updates, metrics, and logging.

On the other hand, AWS Lambda lets you painlessly drop in your own code, run code in parallel, create backends, develop event handlers and data processing systems, and never pay for idle time.

In practice, AWS Lambda introduced a new serverless world, providing an event-driven scale with the flexibility of sub-second billing.

Back in November 2014, only S3, Amazon DynamoDB, and Kinesis were available for Lambda functions. Since then, plenty of other services have been integrated, like CloudFormation, SWF, CloudTrail, SES, Cognito, API Gateway, SNS, and CloudWatch. In this hands-on lab you learn how we can use the log stream functionality of CloudWatch to monitor the execution of a Lambda function.

Initially, only Node.js was supported, and Lambda functions had to be coded in JavaScript. Later, AWS added CORS support, mobile backends capabilities, sync calls and resource policies. Since this summer, new features and options have been available: Java support, S3 uploads, Tokyo region, and Alexa skills.

Blueprints from AWS partners have recently begun appearing to help you get started quickly by using sample configurations of events sources and Lambda functions.

AWS Lambda Cloudwatch Logs Processing

What’s new in AWS Lambda?

Werner Vogels highlighted recent Lambda-related updates during his second re:Invent Keynote in Las Vegas. Here are the new features Lambda now offers:

  • SES inbound rules for custom spam/virus checks.
  • CloudWatch Log processing to scan, audit, or index log entries in near real-time.
  • Python 2.7 support in all SDKs, CLI, and Console, including the latest SDK (version 1.1.3 of boto3).
  • Long-running functions  – from only 60 seconds up to 5 minutes.
  • Resource sizing between 23 power levels: compute price scales with the power level, the duration can range from 100ms to 5min. Keep in mind that AWS Free Tier includes 1M free requests and 400KGB-s/month.
  • Scheduled functions to enable periodic execution with a 5 min granularity (or by using cronjob syntax). For example, you could easily poll SQS or other data sources. CLI and SDK support will be available later this year.
  • Functions Versioning by using incremental integer versions, plus $LATEST and custom aliases, so you get total flexibility with versioning (both on API Gateway and Lambda).
  • IoT backends, to easily develop backends for your IoT applications.
  • VPC support for Lambda execution inside your own VPC. There is a new VpcConfig function configuration parameter. The execution takes just a bit longer, but you can finally access VPC resources such as RDS databases and local Memcached instances.

AWS Lambda versioning aliases
We are definitely looking forward to getting our hands of whatever is coming next for Lambda. If you want to deepen your understanding of how Lambda works, try Cloud Academy’s Understanding AWS Lambda course and read article AWS Lambda: an introduction and practical walkthrough.

Avatar

Written by

Alex Casalboni

Alex is a Software Engineer with a great passion for music and web technologies. He's experienced in web development and software design, with a particular focus on frontend and UX.


Related Posts

Joe Nemer
Joe Nemer
— September 15, 2020

New Content: Azure DP-100 Certification, Alibaba Cloud Certified Associate Prep, 13 Security Labs, and Much More

This past month our Content Team served up a heaping spoonful of new and updated content. Not only did our experts release the brand new Azure DP-100 Certification Learning Path, but they also created 18 new hands-on labs — and so much more! New content on Cloud Academy At any time, y...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • DevOps
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Machine Learning
  • programming
Joe Nemer
Joe Nemer
— August 28, 2020

AWS Certification Practice Exam: What to Expect from Test Questions

If you’re building applications on the AWS cloud or looking to get started in cloud computing, certification is a way to build deep knowledge in key services unique to the AWS platform. AWS currently offers 12 certifications that cover major cloud roles including Solutions Architect, De...

Read more
  • AWS
  • AWS Certifications
Patrick Navarro
Patrick Navarro
— August 25, 2020

Overcoming Unprecedented Business Challenges with AWS

From auto-scaling applications with high availability to video conferencing that’s used by everyone, every day —  cloud technology has never been more popular or in-demand. But what does this mean for experienced cloud professionals and the challenges they face as they carve out a new p...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Cloud Adoption
  • digital transformation
Avatar
Andrew Larkin
— August 18, 2020

Constant Content: Cloud Academy’s Q3 2020 Roadmap

Hello —  Andy Larkin here, VP of Content at Cloud Academy. I am pleased to release our roadmap for the next three months of 2020 — August through October. Let me walk you through the content we have planned for you and how this content can help you gain skills, get certified, and...

Read more
  • alibaba
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • content roadmap
  • Content updates
  • DevOps
  • GCP
  • Google Cloud
  • New content
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— August 5, 2020

New Content: Alibaba, Azure AZ-303 and AZ-304, Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) Foundation, Python 3 Programming, 16 Hands-on Labs, and Much More

This month our Content Team did an amazing job at publishing and updating a ton of new content. Not only did our experts release the brand new AZ-303 and AZ-304 Certification Learning Paths, but they also created 16 new hands-on labs — and so much more! New content on Cloud Academy At...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • DevOps
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Machine Learning
  • programming
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— July 16, 2020

Blog Digest: Which Certifications Should I Get?, The 12 Microsoft Azure Certifications, 6 Ways to Prevent a Data Breach, and More

This month, we were excited to announce that Cloud Academy was recognized in the G2 Summer 2020 reports! These reports highlight the top-rated solutions in the industry, as chosen by the source that matters most: customers. We're grateful to have been nominated as a High Performer in se...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • blog digest
  • Certifications
  • Cloud Academy
  • OWASP
  • OWASP Top 10
  • Security
  • VPCs
Avatar
Cloud Academy Team
— July 9, 2020

Which Certifications Should I Get?

The old AWS slogan, “Cloud is the new normal” is indeed a reality today. Really, cloud has been the new normal for a while now and getting credentials has become an increasingly effective way to quickly showcase your abilities to recruiters and companies. With all that in mind, the s...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Certifications
  • Cloud Computing
  • Google Cloud Platform
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— July 2, 2020

New Content: AWS, Azure, Typescript, Java, Docker, 13 New Labs, and Much More

This month, our Content Team released a whopping 13 new labs in real cloud environments! If you haven't tried out our labs, you might not understand why we think that number is so impressive. Our labs are not “simulated” experiences — they are real cloud environments using accounts on A...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • DevOps
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Machine Learning
  • programming
Joe Nemer
Joe Nemer
— June 19, 2020

Kickstart Your Tech Training With a Free Week on Cloud Academy

Are you looking to make a jump in your technical career? Want to get trained or certified on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud Platform, DevOps, Kubernetes, Python, or another in-demand skill? Then you'll want to mark your calendar. Starting Monday, June 22 at 12:00 a.m. PDT (3:00 a.m. EDT), ...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • cloud academy content
  • complimentary access
  • GCP
  • on the house
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— June 11, 2020

New Content: AZ-500 and AZ-400 Updates, 3 Google Professional Exam Preps, Practical ML Learning Path, C# Programming, and More

This month, our Content Team released tons of new content and labs in real cloud environments. Not only that, but we introduced our very first highly interactive "Office Hours" webinar. This webinar, Acing the AWS Solutions Architect Associate Certification, started with a quick overvie...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • DevOps
  • Google Cloud Platform
  • Machine Learning
  • programming
Rebecca Willis
Rebecca Willis
— June 3, 2020

Azure vs. AWS: Which Certification Provides the Brighter Future?

More and more companies are using cloud services, prompting more and more people to switch their current IT position to something cloud-related. The problem is most people only have that much time after work to learn new technologies, and there are plenty of cloud services that you can ...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • certification
Alisha Reyes
Alisha Reyes
— June 2, 2020

Blog Digest: 5 Reasons to Get AWS Certified, OWASP Top 10, Getting Started with VPCs, Top 10 Soft Skills, and More

Thank you for being a valued member of our community! We recently sent out a short survey to understand what type of content you would like us to add to Cloud Academy, and we want to thank everyone who gave us their input. If you would like to complete the survey, it's not too late. It ...

Read more
  • AWS
  • Azure
  • blog digest
  • Certifications
  • Cloud Academy
  • OWASP
  • OWASP Top 10
  • Security
  • VPCs