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5 things to look for at AWS Re:Invent 2014

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This week anyone with even a passing interest in cloud computing will be watching what Amazon announces at AWS Re:Invent, the annual confab for AWS partners and customers.

Here are a few things to watch for at Re:invent:

Amazon CTO Werner Vogels and CEO Jeff Bezos on stage at AWS: Reinvent
Amazon CTO Werner Vogels and CEO Jeff Bezos on stage at AWS: Reinvent

1: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.  Will he make an appearance this year? He was onstage with CTO Werner Vogels in 2012, but has otherwise been a no-show. Last year, Bezos was manifest only via a second-hand quote from Amazon SVP Andy Jassy telling reporters that Bezos said AWS could become Amazon’s largest business.

2: Official Docker support. [company]IBM[/company], [company]Red Hat[/company], [company]Google[/company] and even [company]Microsoft[/company] are officially on the Docker (and Kubernetes) bandwagon. [company]Amazon[/company] supports Docker on Elastic Beanstalk, but needs to make a more definitive statement — perhaps some sort of Docker-as-a-Service. Docker CEO Ben Golub will be at the event so stay tuned. And there will be Docker training sessions of course.

3: Expanded reserved instances. If Amazon announces that RIs can be used across availability zones in a region, it will get a standing ovation, said one long-standing AWS watcher.

If you buy a reserved instance now you are tied into one zone and when you launch you have to specify the same zone you initially bought in to get the savings. All of that gets complicated when the purchase of the RI is someone other than the developer who consumes it, he said.  If you add multiple accounts, RIs of different instance types, in different zones and regions, it actually gets difficult to use your RIs, he said.

4: More incremental (sub-hour) pricing.  Both [company]Microsoft[/company] Azure and [company]Google[/company] Compute Engine are available in per-minute increments, Amazon remains at a per-hour model. I’m told Amazon’s infrastructure may make per-minute pricing impossible, but stay tuned.

5: More enterprise goodies. As Microsoft, IBM, HP, Red Hat and others improve their respective clouds, Amazon needs to continue to push higher-value, higher end services for enterprise in the vein of RedShift data warehousing, Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) and more recently AWS Directory Services and its vCenter-like portal for VMware admins.

Bonus point:  Some sort of directional statement vis a vis live migration.

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Feature photo courtesy of  Flickr user Flying Cloud

Note: this story was updated at 11:30 November 10 to include mention of live migration which, shame on me, I should have included earlier.


5 Responses to “5 things to look for at AWS Re:Invent 2014”

  1. betsywangrs

    Thanks for the overview on what to keep our eye on at AWS Re:Invent this year. If you’re at re:Invent and wondering how to Manage AWS, VMware and Hybrid Cloud, check out this RightScale blog post for a preview of what we’ll be covering at our session:

  2. bmccallion

    Cloud is not a spectator sport and “long standing AWS watchers” may need to put down their mint julips now and again in order to keep up with this fast game

    As far as reserved instances are concerned the capability to change the availability zone of a reserved instance was released a while ago. Presently AWS documentation notes this capability. I don’t doubt there will be news about reserved instances, however the ability to reassign reserved instances to zones within a region is old news. For sophisticated buyers Reserved and Spot instances offer far more efficient tools for enterprise to manage costs at scale than Googles “auto discount” for long running instances. People forget Bezos worked in finance before launching and his sophististication is evident in the design of reserved and spot instances and the marketplace through which to buy them.