A little more than a week ago Amazon made some announcements, near and dear to my heart, warehousing. Only this time, as you would expect from Amazon, it is moving to the cloud… with the announcement of their “Redshift” product. I have been intrigued by some of the advantages that cloud computing provides, however, from a data warehouse perspective, the tools, data storage methods, BI integration, user experience etc. just don’t seem like they are a fit with cloud computing (yet). This is why Redshift may turn out to be some of the initial steps in a direction that begins to solve some of the issues (we shall see). Redshift or otherwise, it is impossible to deny (at least the desire) to move warehousing in that direction. [Amazon Blog]
After some reading in a variety of places, I decided a test-drive of Redshift might be worthwhile… to fill-out the request form, you need a AWS account number… which lead me to looking at the AWS account levels… and signed up for the free-tier…. which brings me to the title of my post “Amazon – Give it a try”.
This is literally my first experience using this services, so I struck out, remaining in my comfort zone, and started a RDS database instance for sql-server 2012, and within 15 minutes (including provisioning time) had a 20gb database instance up-and-running, automatic patching, backups and all…. The alerts and notifications with CloudWatch rival what you can get in most any well constructed commercially available product ranging from CPU utilization to queue lengths and beyond, at the global as well as instance level, overall, I am impressed so far. I still have much to learn, and play with… hopefully… will be able to report some findings on Redshift, which is what kicked me off on this Amazon journey in the first place.
So for now… take my advice… Give it a try… there is something there for everyone (for free).