You can become a serverless blackbelt. Enrol to my 4-week online workshop Production-Ready Serverless and gain hands-on experience building something from scratch using serverless technologies. At the end of the workshop, you should have a broader view of the challenges you will face as your serverless architecture matures and expands. You should also have a firm grasp on when serverless is a good fit for your system as well as common pitfalls you need to avoid. Sign up now and get 15% discount with the code yanprs15!
Hi, welcome to another weekly update.
We welcome Thundra back as our sponsor for May!
Serverless architectures are usually implemented on event-driven distributed functions. Monitoring such applications can be a daunting task with the old school methods. Thundra helps companies and developers effectively monitor and troubleshoot their serverless architectures with zero overhead. To unlock Thundra, all you need to do is adding the AWS Lambda Layer to your functions. Thundra’s full tracing capability combines distributed and local tracing enabling developers both to track the messages exchanged in serverless transactions and to trace the values of local variables inside the functions. Thundra names this capability as “visibility from the bird’s eye view to the tiniest detail”. This flexible tracing reduces the troubleshooting of serverless application by nearly 90%.
Thundra also enables you to make outlier analysis with its capability to pinpoint the problematic parts with one click when your function was not performing well. Thanks to that, you can fix the problems before they turn out to outages. With rich metrics, you can monitor the health and cost of your serverless architecture. Sign up to Thundra today to unlock the best serverless observability experience. We’re giving away “Production-ready Serverless” video course by Yan Cui to the people who share their serverless observability challenges.
To VPC or not to VPC? Pros and Cons in AWS Lambda. In this guest post for Lumigo, I dug into issues such as slow cold start, ENI & IP limits, and does VPCs actually improve your security (for Lambda) in meaningful ways?
Using CloudWatch and Lambda to implement ad-hoc scheduling. In this post, I looked at how you can implement ad-hoc scheduling using a cron-based approach with CloudWatch and Lambda. I considered the scalability and precision of this approach and how you can mitigate issues such as hot spots.
Introducing… CloudFormation extrinsic functions. I created a plugin for the Serverless framework that lets you use a number of custom Fn:: functions in your serverless.yml – e.g. Fn::StartsWith and Fn::Substr.
My new course – Complete guide to AWS Step Functions – is now live!
You can browse the curriculum and purchase the course here. The first two chapters are free to everyone. The course is approximately 2 hours in length and covers everything you need to know to use Step Functions effectively.
- what is Step Functions, and when to use it?
- the 7 types of states
- API Gateway and CloudWatch Event triggers
- integration with other AWS services – SNS, SQS and DynamoDB
- best practices
- design patterns
Open source contributions
We released a big change to the serverless-step-functions plugin this week: to support CloudFormation intrinsic functions in the state machine definitions.
Previously, you had to construct the ARN for your Lambda functions, or SNS topics, or SQS queue URLs:
From v1.18.0 onwards, you will be able to use Fn::GetAtt to reference a function in your serverless.yml like this:
One thing to keep in mind is that you have to use the CloudFormation logical ID for the functions (or SNS topics, or SQS queues). Since the serverless framework is generating these logical IDs, the quickest way to find them is to run “sls package” and then look into the generated CloudFormation template in the .serverless folder.
AWS announced some big changes to Parameter Store:
- Higher API throughput – once enabled on an account, you can get up to 1K req/s (the current max is around 40 req/s). When you enable this feature, you will also start to incur $0.05 per 10K API calls to SSM Parameter Store.
- Advanced Parameters – allows you to use bigger payload (8KB), configure expiration policies and send notifications when parameters are about to expire or haven’t changed for a certain amount of time. Advanced parameters are $0.05 per parameter per month.
Chris Munns also shared some great news regards to Lambda performance!
And that’s it for another weekly update, see you guys next week :-)
Hi, I’m Yan. I’m an AWS Serverless Hero and I help companies go faster for less by adopting serverless technologies successfully.
Are you struggling with serverless or need guidance on best practices? Do you want someone to review your architecture and help you avoid costly mistakes down the line? Whatever the case, I’m here to help.
Skill up your serverless game with this hands-on workshop.
My 4-week Production-Ready Serverless online workshop is back!
This course takes you through building a production-ready serverless web application from testing, deployment, security, all the way through to observability. The motivation for this course is to give you hands-on experience building something with serverless technologies while giving you a broader view of the challenges you will face as the architecture matures and expands.
We will start at the basics and give you a firm introduction to Lambda and all the relevant concepts and service features (including the latest announcements in 2020). And then gradually ramping up and cover a wide array of topics such as API security, testing strategies, CI/CD, secret management, and operational best practices for monitoring and troubleshooting.
If you enrol now you can also get 15% OFF with the promo code “yanprs15”.
Check out my new podcast Real-World Serverless where I talk with engineers who are building amazing things with serverless technologies and discuss the real-world use cases and challenges they face. If you’re interested in what people are actually doing with serverless and what it’s really like to be working with serverless day-to-day, then this is the podcast for you.
Check out my new course, Learn you some Lambda best practice for great good! In this course, you will learn best practices for working with AWS Lambda in terms of performance, cost, security, scalability, resilience and observability. We will also cover latest features from re:Invent 2019 such as Provisioned Concurrency and Lambda Destinations. Enrol now and start learning!
Check out my video course, Complete Guide to AWS Step Functions. In this course, we’ll cover everything you need to know to use AWS Step Functions service effectively. There is something for everyone from beginners to more advanced users looking for design patterns and best practices. Enrol now and start learning!
Here is a complete list of all my posts on serverless and AWS Lambda. In the meantime, here are a few of my most popular blog posts.
- All you need to know about caching for serverless applications
- Lambda optimization tip – enable HTTP keep-alive
- You are wrong about serverless and vendor lock-in
- You are thinking about serverless costs all wrong
- Just how expensive is the full AWS SDK?
- Check-list for going live with API Gateway and Lambda
- How to choose the right API Gateway auth method
- CloudFormation protip: use !Sub instead of !Join
- AWS Lambda – should you have few monolithic functions or many single-purposed functions?
- Guys, we’re doing pagination wrong
- Top 10 Serverless framework best practices
- How to break the “senior engineer” career ceiling
- My advice to junior developers