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Host Your Web Site On The Cloud: Amazon Web Services Made Easy Paperback – 1 Oct 2010

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About the Author

Jeff Barr joined Amazon.com in 2002 when he relized it was destined to become the next great developer platform, and that he could help to make it so. In his role as the Amazon Web Services Senior Evangelist, Jeff speaks to developers at conferences and user groups all over the world. Before coming to Amazon, Jeff ran his own consulting practice and has held management and development positions at Microsoft, eByz, KnowNow, and Visix Software.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ian Howlett VINE VOICE on 16 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback
Maybe there isn't a great deal here that Amazon's own documentation doesn't cover, but this book puts it all together nicely and gives a compelling business case for cloud computing. If you want a good introductory book that is an easy read and will give you a good grounding to go and do further exploration I think this book very much succeeds.

As a developer who hasn't yet used cloud services, this book was a perfect introduction for me. There's some good sections on the general concepts of cloud computing, and what it can achieve. Given that the author works for Amazon, give him credit for also including information on what cloud computing *can't* achieve, and when it wouldn't be cost-effective. Some of the major services such as EC2 and S3 are gone into in detail, with some useful code examples and command line examples.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a good starting point for those wishing to get into Amazon Web Services. I have been trying to get to grips through the getting started guides and documentation but have not been successful.

This lays out the basics of connecting to various AWS services, and introduces some of the key concepts and terminology.

While useful, this book is now a bit out of date, as the author firmly points you towards the 'CloudFusion' PHP framework to connect to the services, but this no longer exists thanks to the fact that Amazon's own SDKs are now updated. This makes the code examples in the book no more than pseudocode.

If you are comfortable reading basic code, and then sifting through the documentation to find the updated SDK calls then you should be fine, but if you're not up on your PHP or are looking for a step-by-step guide then this is not for you.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Edward Grant on 20 Jan. 2011
Format: Paperback
I downloaded this as an eBook to my iPad with the Kindle app and was not particularly impressed. Apart from a section on free applications to help view and monitor your instances, there is very little that is not covered in Amazon's very good online documentation. The final section, `Putting It All Together', gives very simple example PHP pages but no help with moving an existing site to the cloud. The title `Host Your Website . . .' is not supported by much useful information on moving your site, including moving your domain name.

All examples are based on PHP scripting and Apache servers on Linux. There is nothing about Windows Server IIS based websites.

The book would have been less disappointing if I had paid £5 but I paid £19.27 which it is definitely not worth. I cannot recommend this book and considering asking for my money back.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 20 reviews
39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Should be titled "An Overview Amazon Web Services" 20 Mar. 2011
By T. Miller - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book expecting to learn how to move my website into the cloud. I already had a vague understanding of Amazon's AWS, and was looking for a straightforward explanation of the best practices and methods for moving away from a standard hosting setup. However, this book provided NONE of that.

Get this book if you want to learn more about each of the major components of AWS, and write PHP scripts to do simple operations. But do NOT get this book if you're looking for practical advice on how to host a web site on AWS. For example, there's no discussion about using SSL certificates within AWS, only a couple of paragraph about public IP's and directing your DNS entries to it, nothing about any considerations for Apache, Tomcat, Jetty, or other servers. The coverage is pretty much 98% all about how to do the very basic operations with AWS.

Summary: You can learn everything this book presents for free on the Amazon's AWS website. If you're looking to move an existing website to AWS, this book won't really give you any help unless you don't even know what AWS is.
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
The best book written on how to get started in the Amazon Cloud 1 Oct. 2010
By Canard Pusher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My teams in two companies have now built solutions that used AWS and the Amazon Cloud Solution including systems that serve users with millions of page-views and mobile solutions serving the US, Mexico, China, Taiwan, Korea, ....

I WISH I HAD HAD THIS BOOK FOR THE TEAM!

Amazon's documentation and support is excellent, but Jeff Barr has put it all together in a precise, complete, and well documented roadmap.

Have you been intimidated by cloud computing and hosting your solution in the cloud? Don't be. Jeff leads you through the process step by step.

The previous review is right on - you """don't (need) to be a VC funded Silicon Valley start-up, or a Top 1000 website to take advantage of the power, flexibility and cost savings found in cloud computing."""

Although not just anybody can do it (such as my 84 year old mother) Jeff has done an outstanding job making it easy. If you are a reasonably web-savy mid-level PHP familiar programmer (my mother is not) you'll be up and running building highly scalable cloud-based solutions in hours. It's easier than fixing pizza....

Oh -- and if you have multiple programmers running around and want to keep a copy of the book for yourself - buy more than one copy. Someone already borrowed mine which means it will be MIA for at least a month.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Finally! Clear & Simple Explanation of Moving to Cloud Web Hosting 27 Sept. 2010
By Chris Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is the "official" Amazon EC2 and S3 book, and it does a fantastic job of covering the basics.

If you've been intimidated by cloud computing and hosting websites on the cloud, fear no longer! This book will walk you through everything you need to know to transition from dedicated servers or shared hosting accounts and into supper affordable cloud hosting where you can rent servers for just pennies per hour and instantly go from 1 server to 20 and then back to 1 as dictated by traffic.

If you're still leasing servers for hundreds of dollars a month each, if commissioning a new server takes days rather than minutes, if you pay through the nose for bandwidth, if your site or web applications can't handle sudden traffic spikes then this book is for you. You don't to be a VC funded Silicon Valley start-up, or a Top 1000 website to take advantage of the power, flexibility and cost savings found in cloud computing. Anybody can do it.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Starting standard, but not a "bible" like some say 13 Jan. 2011
By Joeyvandijk - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is definitely a good starter for developer to understand AWS-services. Too bad it is not updated with the latest offerings while I understand that the innovation speed is going fast.
The point I found annoying was its markup (on the kindle it looked all as links but were none, bold annoys you when reading long text,etc) in combination with a technical way of explaining whats happening. I expected more a general introduction but mostly it was too much strict about what you needed to make it all work. Their was too little depth (for example some extra chapters about region syncing or other higher level tips/tricks) during the story.

I think with blogs and aws.amazon.com you will find as much info about AWS during the time you will read this book, but can be interesting to PHP developers that wanna make their API to use AWS in their services. I really missed the higher level chapters to complete the book more and justify its price.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Great overview - hoping Amazon pushes updates 1 Dec. 2010
By Bryan Bigari - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thought this book was well written. It is organized in a logical fashion, and it's obvious the author loves his work. Sometimes that's not apparent in more technical tomes. Mr. Barr does a great job balancing the time spent explaining and the time walking through examples so I think both top-down and bottom-up learners will get a lot of use out of this book. I'm not a programmer by trade, just someone that likes to tinker and knows enough about programming and web services to be dangerous. After reading the book and going through the example code projects, I now feel comfortable in my ability to analyze when a particular AWS is a good fit for a problem, and how to best utilize it's strengths. There's not much more you can ask for from a book on this topic.

Since this book is written for newcomers to AWS (like myself), I'm hoping/pleading Amazon will push some basic updates to those of us with Kindle versions. I'm not asking for anything big, but as an example the often-included 'cloudfusion.class.php' is now 'sdk.class.php'. Can people find it on their own? Sure - if I did, anyone can :) But now that cloudfusion has been rolled into the official SDK, it'd be an easy fix for the author/publisher/Amazon to push that change to the Kindle version. I don't expect weekly updates - I get that the book will be outdated relatively quickly, and another edition will likely roll out - but since this book is aimed at relative newcomers and the fix is pretty painless to extend it's useful life, I'd just offer it up as a suggestion.

This doesn't distract from how good the book is - if you follow the examples you'll have a great understanding of how AWS works and how to utilize it by the time you are through.
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