Skeddly Blog

Skeddly news and announcements...

Automatically Shutdown Unused EC2 Instances at Night

Not all EC2 instances need to be running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Many instances are only used during business hours, Monday to Friday.

Here’s an easy way to configure your EC2 instances using EC2 tags to shutdown at night, restart in the morning, and only run on weekdays (Monday to Friday).

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Two New Create AMI Image Action Enhancements

Skeddly’s “Create AMI Image” action is an excellent tool for creating AMI images from your EC2 instances on a regular schedule.

Today, we have enhanced this action with two new features.

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Easy Automatic EBS Snapshots

Skeddly is capable of creating EBS snapshots based on a set of EBS volumes, or a set of EC2 instances. For the latter, it will create EBS snapshots for all EBS volumes attached to your EC2 instances. Both methods allow you to configure Skeddly in such a way that it will look for EBS volumes or EC2 instances with certain tags and create snapshots for those volumes only.

In this article, I will show you how to setup easy daily EBS snapshots using Skeddly and EC2 tags.

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New t2 Instance Types and m3/r3 Node Types

Today, Amazon made two announcements.

First, the new instance types for ElastiCache are also supported by Skeddly. You can select these new types when creating new ElastiCache clusters.

Second, Skeddly also has added support for the new T2 instance types for launching new instances and changing EC2 instance types.

In addition, the t2.micro and t2.small instance types have been added to the free tier for Skeddly and they are also included in the lower cost when used in a Start EC2 Instance or Stop EC2 Instace action. Full pricing information can be found on our pricing page at https://www.skeddly.com/pricing/

New ElastiCache Actions

I am happy to announce the immediate availability of 5 new ElastiCache actions:

  • Create ElastiCache Cluster
  • Delete ElastiCache Clusters
  • Create ElastiCache Read Replica
  • Create ElastiCache Snapshots
  • Delete ElastiCache Snapshots

Each of these new actions support both Memcached and Redis clusters, where possible.

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Alternate Email Address for Billing and Invoices

Until today, invoices and other billing-related emails were sent to the primary email address associated with your Skeddly accounts.

Today, you can now choose to have an alternate email address where invoices and payment receipts are sent. This can be useful for accounting, ensuring that receipts get to the correct place.

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Price Reductions on Starts/Stops and Free-tier Expansion

We are happy to announce two things today, both of which should help lower your costs with Skeddly.

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How Skeddly Was Affected by the Heartbleed Bug

Over the past few days, the Heartbleed Bug has caused many questions and uncertainty about SSL security. Many sites were impacted, including Skeddly. We don’t know, and we may never know, if anyone was actually able to exploit the bug, or if it went unnoticed for years without incident.

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Use Skeddly to Delete Old RDS Snapshots

Skeddly can be a powerful tool in creating scheduled manual snapshots of your RDS instances. It includes an action called “Create RDS Snapshot” which can create a snapshot of an RDS instance on your schedule.

However, by default, all Amazon Web Services accounts can only create 50 manual snapshots. So if you’re creating snapshots on a schedule, then sooner or later, you’ll hit that 50 snapshot limit. Of course, you can contact AWS support to have this limit raised if you really need to keep more than 50 manual snapshots. Keep in mind that you may be paying to store those snapshots.

If you don’t need to keep all of those snapshots, then use the “Delete RDS Snapshots” action built into Skeddly.

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An Advanced Backup Strategy Using Skeddly

Using Skeddly, you are able to easily create EBS snapshots on a hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly basis. In addition, Skeddly can be configured to delete those snapshots based on age, and keeping a minimum number of snapshots. Simple backup and delete strategies can be created. But more advanced strategies can be created as well.

Goal

For example, let’s say that you want to create snapshots under the following schedule:

  • Hourly snapshots kept for 24 hours
  • Daily snapshots kept for one week
  • Weekly snapshots kept for one month
  • Monthly snapshots kept for one year

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