Serverless

What is the best event source for doing pub-sub with AWS Lambda?

AWS offers a wealth of options for implementing messaging patterns such as pub-sub with Lambda, let’s compare and contrast some of these options. The pub-sub pattern Publish-Subscribe (often shortened to pub-sub) is a messaging pattern where publishers and subscribers are decoupled through an intermediary broker (ZeroMQ, RabbitMQ, SNS, etc.). SNS + Lambda In the AWS ecosystem, the obvious …

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AWS Lambda – monolithic functions won’t help you with cold starts

After my post on monolithic functions vs single-purposed functions, a few people asked me about the effect monolithic functions have on cold starts, so I thought I’d share my thoughts here. The question goes something like this: Monolithic functions are invoked more frequently so they are less likely to be in cold state, while single-purposed …

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Serverless observability brings new challenges to current practices

This is a the first in a mini series that accompanies my “the present and future of Serverless observability” talk at ServerlessConf Paris and QCon London. part 1 : new challenges to observability <- you’re here part 2 : first party observability tools from AWS part 3 : 3rd party observability tools part 4 : the future of Serverless observability 2017 …

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AWS Lambda – how best to manage shared code and shared infrastructure

In the last post I discussed the pros & cons of following the Single Responsibility Principle (SRP) when moving to the serverless paradigm. One of the questions that popped up on both Twitter and Medium is “how do you deal with shared code?”. It is a FAQ whenever I speak at user groups or conferences about AWS Lambda, alongside “how do …

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AWS Lambda – should you have few monolithic functions or many single-purposed functions?

A funny moment (at 38:50) happened during Tim Bray’s session (SRV306) at re:invent 2017, when he asked the audience if we should have many simple, single-purposed functions, or fewer monolithic functions, and the room was pretty much split in half. Having been brought up on the SOLID principles, and especially the single responsibility principle (SRP), …

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You need to use structured logging with AWS Lambda

This is a lesson that I wished I learnt when I first started using AWS Lambda in anger, it would have made my life simpler right from the start.  But, we did get there before long, and it allowed us to track and include correlation IDs in our log messages (which are then pushed to an ELK stack)which would …

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I’m afraid you’re thinking about AWS Lambda cold starts all wrong

When I discuss AWS Lambda cold starts with folks in the context of API Gateway, I often get responses along the line of: Meh, it’s only the first request right? So what if one request is slow, the next million requests would be fast. Unfortunately that is an oversimplification of what happens. Cold start happens once for …

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