AWS Lambda: how to detect and stop accidental infinite recursions

Lambda makes it easy to build event-driven architectures. Each function only needs to look after its own responsibilities. We chain them together through APIs, queues, streams, and other event sources. It’s a good way to build complex systems out of simple components. We need only managed services, and we only pay for them when we …

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How to log timed out Lambda invocations

Imagine the situation. It’s 3 AM, and PagerDuty alerts you that the number of 5XX errors has spiked. Something’s wrong. Strange, there are no error logs… Fortunately, we have enabled X-Ray tracing and I’m able to quickly find one of the traces for these 5XX errors. Sadly, the traces don’t offer any explanation for the …

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ICYMI: five updates you’ve missed about Serverless Step Functions

Over the last 6 months, we have made the Serverless Step Functions plugin better and more useful. Here are the most impactful changes, in case you missed it! Support for intrinsic function One of the main pain points of using the plugin has long been that you needed to use fully-formed ARNs. As of v1.18.0 …

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A self-healing Kinesis function that adapts its throughput based on performance

I spent time with a client this week to solve an interesting problem – to adjust the number of concurrent requests to a downstream service dynamically based on response time and error rate. This is a common challenge when integrating with third parties, so we decided to share our approach so others might benefit from …

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AWS SAM + Cloudformation macros, a patch made in heaven

Over the last few weeks I have been working with a very ambitious client – Solve, who is building a new murder mystery game. They are doing some really cool things technically, and are building an entirely serverless stack. While working with Solve I have spent a lot of time with AWS SAM. That experience …

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How to include Serverless Repository apps in serverless.yml

Over the past year, the Serverless Application Repository (SAR) service has improved a lot. I have grown to enjoy it more and more, and have contributed a few applications myself: lambda-janitor: cron job to delete old, unused versions of all Lambda functions in the region to free up storage space. auto-subscribe-log-group-to-arn: subscribes new and existing …

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CloudFormation protip: use !Sub instead of !Join

Update 12/05/2019: as Moshe pointed out in the comments, Fn::Sub is not supported by the Serverless framework because it too uses the ${} syntax to support its own variables system. However, as is often the case with the Serverless framework, you can work around this issue with a plugin. Check out the serverless-cloudformation-sub-variables plugin which …

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Weekly update 25

Hi, welcome to another weekly update. We welcome Thundra back as our sponsor for May! It is my pleasure to welcome Thundra back as the sponsor for this month. Here’s a message from Thundra, who is also giving away copies of my video course Production-Ready Serverless! Serverless architectures are usually implemented on event-driven distributed functions. Monitoring …

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