Skeddly Blog

Skeddly news and announcements...

Start SWF Workflow Execution Action Added

Today, we are happy to announce that we’ve added our first Simple Workflow Service (SWF) action: Start SWF Workflow Execution.

Amazon Simple Workflow is a service designed to coordinate workflows made up of discrete tasks.

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Invoke Lambda Function Action Added

AWS Lambda is an AWS service that allows you to execute your own code without having to spin up your own infrastructure. That is, you don’t have to launch your own EC2 instances in order to run your code.

Currently, AWS Lambda supports Node.js, but other languages are going to be added soon.

More information about AWS Lambda can be found at http://aws.amazon.com/lambda/.

Today, we have made available a new action that you can use with AWS Lambda: Execute Lambda Function.

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Enforcing a "Tag or Terminate" Policy

During AWS re:Invent 2014, J.R. Storment from Cloudability did a session titled “Creating a Culture of Cost Management in Your Organization”. You can view this session on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SaOLzxYiZlE

During this session, he mentioned a policy called “Tag or Terminate”. Basically, he says that if an instance has been up for 24-hours and it hasn’t been tagged according to your tagging policies, then the instance could be stopped. This can be an effective way to enforce your tagging policies for costing and reporting.

You can see this at 14:05 in the video.

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New Enhancements for Creating RDS Snapshots

Today, we’re happy to announce two new enhancements to our “Create RDS Snapshot” action:

  • Add tags to your RDS snapshots
  • Copy the new RDS snapshot to another region

These new features allow you to automatically create, tag, and copy your RDS snapshots for a full disaster recovery strategy.

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Tag Your Redshift Snapshots

Amazon recently released the ability to add resource tags to your Redshift clusters and snapshots. More information can be read about this new feature on the Amazon Web Services blog:

http://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/redshift-tagging-and-more/

Today, we are happy to say that Skeddly’s “Create Redshift Snapshot” action supports adding resource tags to your Redshift snapshots. Simply add the new tags names and values to your action configuration and the extra tags will be added to the new snapshots.

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Create, Tag, Copy EBS Snapshots in a Single Action

For quite some time, Skeddly has enabled you to create EBS snapshots and tag them according to your backup and disaster recovery strategies. Also, Skeddly has been able to copy EBS snapshots between AWS regions according to your schedule. But this was done separately from the creation process.

Today, we are happy to announce that these capabilities have been combined. When you create an EBS snapshot, you can now choose to have that new EBS snapshot automatically copied to another region. This further streamlines your ability to use Skeddly in your disaster recovery strategies.

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AWS re:Invent 2014

AWS re:Invent is Amazon’s largest gathering of Amazon Web Services users, developers, and representatives.

https://reinvent.awsevents.com/

I had the opportunity to attend last year’s event and it was very worthwhile. You get the opportunity to meet users of the AWS community, learn use-cases and best-practices from many companies, and even get certified.

If you will be attending AWS re:Invent this year and you would like to meet up with us, feel free to contact us and we can arrange a time during that week.

EU (Frankfurt) Region Available in Skeddly

Today, Amazon announced the opening of a new AWS region in Germany. Please see the following blog post for more details about the new region.

http://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/aws-region-germany/

We are happy to say that Skeddly now fully supports the new region as well. You can start and stop your EC2 instances, create and copy EBS snapshots, AMI images, and RDS snapshots. In addition, our unique Backup MySql Server action is supported.

If you have expanded your AWS accounts into the new EU (Frankfurt) region, Skeddly is right there with you.

Near-Term AWS Maintenance

Yes, we received that notice too. Amazon is rebooting many of it’s EC2 instances over the next few days. This is to apply some patches to the underlying host systems. There are some articles written with additional details it.

Unfortunately, the time windows in which the updates are going to happen are inconvenient to say the least.

Below are some tips that we have for minimizing the impact of this event.

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Service Level Agreement and System Status

We are introducing a new Service Level Agreement. In basic terms, our commitment to all of our customers is the following:

  1. Your actions will start according to their scheduled start time, and
  2. Your actions will continue to execute without delay

If we don’t deliver on our commitments, then any delayed action executions will be free. You can read the details on our Service Level Agreement page.

This new Service Level Agreement is effective starting September 1, 2014.

In addition, in an effort to be completely transparent, we have set up a system status page. Similar to the system status pages for many other products, like Amazon Web Services, ours will give the current status for our various components. You can see the history of the last few days. If an event occurs, information will be posted there.

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