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Programming Amazon Web Services: S3, EC2, SQS, FPS, and SimpleDB [Paperback]

James Murty
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: 32.50 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 April 2008 0596515812 978-0596515812 1st

Building on the success of its storefront and fulfillment services, Amazon now allows businesses to "rent" computing power, data storage and bandwidth on its vast network platform. This book demonstrates how developers working with small- to mid-sized companies can take advantage of Amazon Web Services (AWS) such as the Simple Storage Service (S3), Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), Simple Queue Service (SQS), Flexible Payments Service (FPS), and SimpleDB to build web-scale business applications.

With AWS, Amazon offers a new paradigm for IT infrastructure: use what you need, as you need it, and pay as you go. Programming Amazon Web Services explains how you can access Amazon's open APIs to store and run applications, rather than spend precious time and resources building your own. With this book, you'll learn all the technical details you need to:

  • Store and retrieve any amount of data using application servers, unlimited data storage, and bandwidth with the Amazon S3 service
  • Buy computing time using Amazon EC2's interface to requisition machines, load them with an application environment, manage access permissions, and run your image using as many or few systems as needed
  • Use Amazon's web-scale messaging infrastructure to store messages as they travel between computers with Amazon SQS
  • Leverage the Amazon FPS service to structure payment instructions and allow the movement of money between any two entities, humans or computers
  • Create and store multiple data sets, query your data easily, and return the results using Amazon SimpleDB.
  • Scale up or down at a moment's notice, using these services to employ as much time and space as you need
Whether you're starting a new online business, need to ramp up existing services, or require an offsite backup for your home, Programming Amazon Web Services gives you the background and the practical knowledge you need to start using AWS. Other books explain how to build web services. This book teaches businesses how to take make use of existing services from an established technology leader.

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Programming Amazon Web Services: S3, EC2, SQS, FPS, and SimpleDB + Programming Amazon EC2 + Resilience and Reliability on AWS
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Product details

  • Paperback: 604 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1st edition (1 April 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596515812
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596515812
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 17.8 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 561,070 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

James Murty is a software developer with extensive experience creating web-based applications and architectures using Java. With a working background spanning a research institute, a small software house and various corporations he has a broad perspective on both the promise and the difficulties inherent in networked applications.

Most recently James has been excited to see the rise of webapplications and services that provide compelling new tools and new ways of approaching old problems. While experimenting in this area he created JetS3t, an open source library and application suite that is the leading Java implementation available for Amazon's S3 data storageservice.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Amazon Web Services are a constantly expanding series of infrastructure services targeted to web developers who want to outsource parts of their application infrastructure. These services are meant to be reliable, scalable and cost-effective. Especially as far as reliability is concerned, however, Amazon Web Services - together with Google App Engine - have recently been regarded as a bit controversial, due to some downtime episodes. Nonetheless, services such as these provide a gate to the future of the Internet, where owners of small and medium web sites, who can't afford to build some high-quality services on their own, can easily outsource them.

Programming Amazon Web Services is the ideal primer to Amazon outsourcing services. It provides a general view of everything Amazon currently offers, including some services in the beta testing phase, as well as the necessary amount of in-depth coverage of each service.

A programmer who never outsourced any part of its infrastructure might not be much confident using APIs which abstract tasks such as database access and data storage (even though it would be a good practice to use some sort of API also for locally-provided services). To help in this situations, this book kicks off with an explanation on how to think an application, with an appreciated overview of REST-based APIs, remote requests and XML documents and their handling; at the same time, the author tells you how Amazon thinks you should build your application to effectively take advantage of what they provide.

After this introductory part, the whole book is dedicated to the exploration of each service: Simple Stoage Service (S3), Elastic Compute Cloud, Simple Queue Service, Flexible Payments Service and SimpleDB.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Quick warning for potential buyers 5 Aug 2011
By Rob
Despite being filed under Books > Computers & Internet > Computer Science > Programming > Languages > Java > Web Services and the author describing himself as '...a software developer with extensive experience creating web-based applications and architectures using Java...' much of this book is actually written in Ruby. The code examples are available for Python and Java as a download however.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good reference if a little out of date 28 Feb 2010
This book is a good reference for AWS services, but it does suffer from the normal problem of a book covering a rapidly evolving technology in that it's already out of date.

It covers the basics of how to use most of the services, and is extremely good for getting an understanding of the various offerings Amazon have, but for the most up to date information you'll need to pay a visit to the AWS website.
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44 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good overview 17 May 2008
By Felix Sheng - Published on
This is a good overview of the suite of services that comprise Amazon Web Services (AWS), I'd have given it a 3.5 star rating if I could. It talks about all of them, but it spends the bulk of its time, very reasonably, discussing S3 (the persistent storage system) and EC2 (the compute cloud - basically Amazon's Rackspace in the clouds) - each getting about 100 pages devoted to it.

As others have noted it is out of date - but any book would have the same problem due to the moving target that AWS is. The biggest news is that EC2 is going to be getting persistent storage, which I believe will change the game completely when it is rolled out to the public. Instead of needing some elaborate connection with S3, now instances will behave much more like a typical physical machine with real disk drive. The book, on the other hand, provides almost no real advice on how to deal with the problem of non-persistence of EC2's current storage mechanism. This is a signifcant problem that everyone will have to deal with and glossing over it is a failing of the book.

This is also a Ruby book, which I found fairly annoying. Nowhere in the description does it suggest that it is done in Ruby. And while Ruby certainly is trendy these days, the actual number of Ruby developers is small - it gets undue weight in computer texts. At the end of the day, though, it generally provides the actual request strings and XML requests and responses for non-ruby folk to come to their own conclusions.

This is a worthwhile book to get if you're interested in quickly getting a good and broad idea on how to work with AWS. It will give a good foundation to get more out of the documentation and forums found on Amazon's AWS site itself.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Resource For Working With Amazon Web Services 10 Jun 2008
By Dan McKinnon - Published on
'Programming Amazon Web Services: S3, EC2, SQS, FPS, and SimpleDB' is a good resource for anyone that is using the Amazon suite of web products and need to learn more about how to get the most out of these powerful set of web 2.0 tools.

For anyone that doesn't know what these tools are, here's a quick one-liner about each:

S3 - online storage to store and retrieve data

EC2 - online computing to be able to run jobs on a farm of machines

SQS - web messaging infrastructure for computer-computer communication

FPS - flexible payment system for moving money online

SimpleDB - store and retrieve datasets online

I like the content of this book and feel that it plays an important part in this niche market but my major qualm is that the code is written solely in Ruby in this book. While that might appeal to a certain market, to only have this communication in Ruby and/or not use a more traditional language of the day I feel is a major mistake. For this reason alone I knock a star off but still recommend it to anyone looking to learn or use these incredibly cool technologies provided by amazon.

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, except for cover typo! 2 July 2008
By Sundar Raman - Published on
Excellent resource, but a bit droll. The content is laid out well, there are plenty of (working) examples, and there's pretty much no fluff to the book at all (in contrast to many O'Reilly books which add a fair amount of humor and distraction).
My chief worry when I received the book was that the title on the spine said "Programming Amazon Web Servcies [sic]". Yes, really the spine has a typo! The cover page does *not* have the typo. Obviously I was worried that the content might have similar brazen errors. But so far not so.
I'd recommend this book for anyone who needs an EC2/S3/AWS reference.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book - Seems A Little Rushed Though 11 May 2008
By Thomas J. Quinlan - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'd have rated this a 4.5 if I could have.

This is an excellent book covering a very new subject matter. My only major complaint is that it seems a little rushed - I've found several typos, and even one section where a couple of lines of (important for that section) code are missing. (I figured out what was missing as I'm sure most people will.)

Also, the book is out of date. However, that is not the fault of the author or the publisher! It is that Amazon's service changes so quickly. The author and the publisher have made every attempt to mention the most recent changes to the service as of the time of writing, including pointing to places on the web to find out more information.

The material it covers is spot on. It goes through the different services that Amazon offers - including their storage, elastic computing, payment systems, and database systems. It clearly explains the disadvantages and advantages of each system, and provides -useful- code examples (in ruby) of how one can take advantage of the services Amazon provides. (There are examples in other languages, like Python, that the author makes available on the book's website.) Each section is devoted to a service for the most part, and the book is very readable.

As I said, I'd have rated this book a 4.5 if I could have. Outside of the errors due to rushing, it's quite useful and quite informative. The code is easy to follow, and I've found it very handy for working with the Amazon Web Services.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good Introduction and Overview of AWS EC2 2 July 2012
By Tom E. Laszewski - Published on
The title of this book is misleading as I didn't find it to be a book about programming AWS. The books was a very good introduction to AWS and services/offerings from AWS including RDS, EC2, S3, SimpleDB, SQS and more. The book had very good high level information and some details on all these services. It could have gone into more detail on the architecture behind each of these services. I found the book went from very high level to detailed code without any explanation or reason for jumping into detailed code. That being said (having co-authored 4 books and knowing the effort that goes into a book) I found the book useful. I would only recommend this book to people that are new to AWS.
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