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Aurora Serverless Database Cluster DEMO


Introduction & HA Overview
Course Summary

The course is part of these learning paths

Working with AWS Databases
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Interested in learning about Amazon Aurora?

Amazon Aurora is a next generation cloud native relational database, providing unrivalled performance and availability features!!

This course explores the various configuration options and techniques that you can use to create highly available Amazon Aurora databases. It starts off by looking at the high availability options available within Amazon Aurora, before diving deeper into more specific features, such as single and multi master setups, read replicas, and how Aurora can be provisioned serverless. Each new topic is accompanied by a real-world demonstration to help you better understand the concepts presented within the course.

For any feedback or questions relating to this course, please contact us as support@cloudacademy.com.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand how to provision and configure Amazon Aurora in a manner that ensures it is highly available and able to serve all read and write requests.

Intended Audience

This course is intended for those responsible for architecting Aurora database setups, with an emphasis on high availability.


To get the most from this course, you should be familiar with basic SQL database concepts. If required, consider taking our "Database Fundamentals for AWS" course first.

Source Code

The following GitHub repository is referenced within this course:


Let's take a quick look at a demo that shows how easy it is to set up and use an Aurora Serverless database cluster.

In this example I’ll perform the following sequence:

  1. Launch a new Aurora Serverless MySQL database within the AWS RDS console.
  2. Create a new database named demo, and within it create a new table named course.
  3. Enable the Web Service Data API on the new Aurora Serverless MySQL database.
  4. Use the AWS CLI to invoke the aws rds-data command to read and write into the course table.

Ok, let's begin. Starting off in the AWS RDS console - I’ll create a new Amazon Aurora MySQL Serverless database.

Under the Database features I’ll select the “Serverless” option - this is what makes the cluster serverless. I’ll set the DB cluster identifier to be “cloudacademy-serverless”. I’ll configure the credentials to be admin with a password of cloudacademy.

For capacity settings - I’ll simply go with 2Gb for minimum capacity and 16Gb for maximum capacity. I’ll also enable the “Force Scaling” and “Pause Compute Capacity” settings to ensure cost savings when activity is low.

I’ll then deploy it into an existing Multi AZ VPC. For security groups - I’ll simply allocate an existing one which allows inbound TCP connections to the default MySQL port 3306. Connections will be made from an existing bastion host which has the standard MySQL client already installed on it.

I’ll also enable the “Data API” which will activate a SQL HTTP endpoint.

Ok with all that in place, I can now go ahead and click on the “Create Database” button at the bottom. Provisioning is fairly quick and takes just a matter of minutes to complete.

While the data provisioning is taking place, I’ll head over into the Secrets Manager service and set up a new secret which will be used later on by the AWS CLI to invoke SQL commands using the SQL HTTP endpoint.

I’ll start by clicking on the “Store a new Secret” button. For the secret type I’ll go with the selected default which is “Credentials for RDS database”. I then need to enter in the username and password Mysql database credentials - which for the serverless database I just launched were admin and cloudacademy respectively. I then need to select the cloudacademy-serverless database and then click the Next button. I then need to allocate this secret a name and optionally a description. In this case I’ll call the secret “demo/cloudacademy-serverless”.

I’ll skip assigning any tags and instead just click the Next button. I’ll accept the automatic rotation section defaults - which are to disable automatic rotation - and again just click on the Next button. The review section looks good - I can now click the Store secret button to create and store the secret. Ok, that has worked. Finally, I need to click on the new secret like so and then copy down the secret ARN highlighted here - this will be used later on to set up and authenticate to the Web Service Data API via the AWS CLI in the terminal.

Ok, let’s jump back into the RDS console and confirm that our Serverless database is ready - which it is. Next I’ll need to discover and copy the allocated host name.

I’ll now jump into my local terminal and connect to the bastion host using SSH.

Once connected I’ll use the MySQL client utility to connect to the serverless database using the hostname just copied. Once authenticated into the serverless database - I’ll simply create a new database named demo and then create a new course table within it.

Ok, I’ll now jump into a new terminal session and this time use the AWS CLI to execute a SQL insert statement to populate sample data into the course table. Here I’ll execute the following command:

aws rds-data execute-statement \

I’ll execute it within the us-west-2 region and set the secret-arn to be the arn copied when we setup the RDS secret within the secrets manager service. The resource arn is copied from the serverless database configuration section within RDS. The database is set to demo, and sql will be set to a simple insert SQL statement that will populate a new course record in our course table.

--region us-west-2 \

--secret-arn "" \--

--resource-arn "" \

--database demo \

--sql "show tables" \

--output json

Ok - executing this statement has now successfully created a new database record within the demo course table. Let's rerun this command a few more times to insert more data.

Finally - I’ll now run a select statement against the table to return all data in the course table.

In summary, this demonstration highlighted the following:

  1. How to provision a new Aurora Serverless MySQL database.
  2. How to enable the Web Service Data API.
  3. How to connect to an Aurora Serverless database using the AWS CLI, authenticating with a secret stored in the Secrets Manager service.
  4. How to execute SQL statements using the AWS CLI.

If you’ve followed along, please don’t forget to terminate your database cluster to avoid ongoing charges.

About the Author
Jeremy Cook
Content Lead Architect
Learning Paths

Jeremy is a Content Lead Architect and DevOps SME here at Cloud Academy where he specializes in developing DevOps technical training documentation.

He has a strong background in software engineering, and has been coding with various languages, frameworks, and systems for the past 25+ years. In recent times, Jeremy has been focused on DevOps, Cloud (AWS, GCP, Azure), Security, Kubernetes, and Machine Learning.

Jeremy holds professional certifications for AWS, GCP, and Kubernetes.