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Skeddly Blog

Skeddly news and announcements...

Archive Logs to Amazon S3

From its beginning, Skeddly has been logging all action activity in your Skeddly account. You can view any of these logs at any time within Skeddly, and you can download them individually, or in a monthly package. For many organizations, these logs are invaluable in their auditing strategies, much like CloudTrail is.

Starting today, we’re making it even easier for you to retain your own copy of your action logs. You can now archive your action logs to an Amazon S3 bucket in your AWS account.

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Delete Unused WorkSpaces

At Eleven41 Software, we use AWS WorkSpaces for our all of our work. It allows us to connect to our working desktops from many different devices, and it helps keep our work secure from loss or theft.

However, it is possible for workspaces to get “forgotten”. This may happen for any number of reasons:

  • A development workspace is no longer needed,
  • An employee may have left the company

Leaving unused workspaces lying around will end up costing you money. Once a new month starts, each workspace will be charged it’s monthly price.

Today, we’re happy to announce a new action to help report on, and clean up, unused AWS WorkSpaces: Delete Unused WorkSpaces Workspaces.

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Create Lightsail Instances From Snapshots

As we have previously discussed, Amazon Lightsail provides a simpler pricing model compared to Amazon EC2. However, you can still benefit from some cost-saving strategies with your Lightsail instances.

Like RDS and Redshift, you can schedule your Lightsail instances to be created each morning, and deleted each evening. This way, you won’t be charged for your instances overnight or over the weekend.

Today, we’re happy to announce a new Lightsail cost-savings action: Create Lightsail Instances From Snapshots.

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Understanding Lightsail Pricing

This article has been updated on 2017-01-27 to include some additional details regarding hourly prices and days-per-month differences.

Amazon Lightsail provides a simpler pricing model compared to Amazon EC2. The pricing for Lightsail is advertised “per month”. For example, $5 per month or $20 per month.

What isn’t up front is that, like EC2, you are actually charged for your Lightsail instances on an hourly basis. So, if your Lightsail instance only exists for 100 hours of the month, then you are only charged for those 100 hours.

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Delete Lightsail Instance Snapshots

Earlier today, we announced our Create Lightsail Instance Snapshots action. Creating snapshots is a great practice, but you will also want to clean up old snapshots. This way, you won’t accumulate costs for unnecessary backups.

Today, we are also announcing the second of our Lightsail actions: Delete Lightsail Instance Snapshots.

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Create Lightsail Instance Snapshots

At AWS re:Invent 2016, AWS announced Amazon Lightsail, Amazon’s Virtual Private Server solution. Lightsail is targeted at the VPS market, with a simpler, albeit less flexible solution compared to EC2. But with Lightsail, users can get up-and-running quickly with a Linux server with many pre-bundled application packages, such as WorkPress, a LAMP stack, or Redmine.

Like many AWS solutions, Lightsail provides a way to create snapshots of your servers. However, the process of creating Lightsail instance snapshots is a manual one: you must create snapshots using the web front-end, or the AWS CLI.

Today, we are announcing the first of our Lightsail actions: Create Lightsail Instance Snapshots.

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Looking at Amazon Athena Pricing

Amazon Athena is an interactive query service where you can query your data in Amazon S3 using standard SQL statements. Amazon Athena only reads your data, it will not add to or modify it. So you can think of it as only being able to execute SELECT statements.

Today, we’re going to take closer look at Amazon Athena pricing and how you can reduce your Athena costs.

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Automatic Partitioning With Amazon Athena

Amazon Athena pricing is based on the bytes scanned. Anything you can do to reduce the amount of data that’s being scanned will help reduce your Amazon Athena query costs.

In our previous article, Partitioning Your Data With Amazon Athena, we partitioned our data into folders to reduce the amount of data scanned. But those partitions were being loaded into our Athena table manually.

In this article, we will show how to load the partitions automatically.

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Partitioning Your Data With Amazon Athena

Amazon Athena pricing is based on the bytes scanned. Anything you can do to reduce the amount of data that’s being scanned will help reduce your Amazon Athena query costs.

In our previous article, Getting Started with Amazon Athena, JSON Edition, we stored JSON data in Amazon S3, then used Athena to query that data.

In this article, we will partition the data, and compare the results.

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Using Compressed JSON Data With Amazon Athena

Amazon Athena pricing is based on the bytes scanned. That is a little ambiguous. To clarify, it’s based on the bytes read from S3. It’s not based on the bytes loaded into Athena.

So, you can reduce the costs of your Athena queries by storing your data in Amazon S3 in a compressed format.

In our previous article, Getting Started with Amazon Athena, JSON Edition, we stored JSON data in Amazon S3, then used Athena to query that data.

In this article, we will compress the JSON data, and compare the results.

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