An Introduction to S3 in AWS


Most consider the “main” storage facility of Amazon Web Services (AWS) to be S3 (the Simple Storage Service). This is very flexible object-based storage in the cloud. Companies can use this for a wide variety of purposes and only pay for that amount of storage that they truly need.

S3 marks one of the original AWS services, so it is no surprise that it can integrate with almost any other service in the public cloud.

The use cases for S3 are almost endless and could include:

  • Static web site hosting
  • Backups
  • Archives
  • Media distribution
  • Disaster recovery
  • Cloud application storage

S3 supports storage classes to better serve the wide variety of use cases that might arise. Lifecycle management policies exist to help automate the migration of data between storage classes. The S3 storage classes include:

  • Amazon S3 Standard – a class for frequently accessed data; because it delivers low latency and high throughput, Standard is targeted for a wide variety of use cases including cloud applications, dynamic websites, content distribution, mobile and gaming applications, and big data analytics
  • Amazon S3 Standard – Infrequent Access – a class for data that is accessed less frequently, but requires rapid access when needed; Standard – IA offers the high durability, throughput, and low latency of Amazon S3 Standard, with a low per GB storage price and per GB retrieval fee; this combination of low cost and high performance make Standard – IA targeted for long-term storage, backups, and as a data store for disaster recovery
  • Glacier – Archive – this class is designed for the archiving of data

To keep data secure, AWS supports a rich set of permissions, encryption, and access control mechanisms.
InformIT (Pearson Education)

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