One of the most important benefits of cloud computing is the capability to scale up or scale down depending on run-time demands. AWS Auto Scaling is a component that can automatically scale your resources based on demand. Using AWS Auto Scaling, you can keep an eye on your applications and automatically change capacity to keep them running at their peak performance capabilities while keeping costs as low as possible. This series of articles provides insight into AWS Auto Scaling, its features and why it is useful, its components, and how it works.
What is Auto Scaling in Cloud Computing?
Autoscaling, auto-scaling, or automatic scaling refers to a cloud computing technique for allocating computational resources on demand. Auto-scaling and load balancing are related since you can scale an application based on its load balancing capability.
Autoscaling is a feature of cloud computing that allows businesses to scale cloud services up or down depending on traffic and usage levels. Automatic scaling solutions are available from cloud computing service providers such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
Read: Getting Started with Kubernetes on Amazon Web Services (AWS)
What is AWS Auto Scaling?
AWS Auto Scaling is an Amazon service adept at automatically monitoring and adjusting compute resources to maintain a steady, predictable performance for your applications hosted in the AWS. It increases the available processing power or storage resources for applications as demand rises and decreases when they are no longer required. When you use AWS Auto Scaling, your applications are constantly monitored, and their capacity is changed automatically to deliver consistent, predictable performance at the lowest possible cost.
AWS Auto Scaling is different from the Auto Scaling tool provided by the cloud provider, which can only scale individual services. This solution, which contains two distinct APIs, allows for step scaling policies and scheduled scaling; none of these features are supported by AWS Auto Scaling. In addition, Amazon Web Services (AWS) also provides support for EC2 Auto Scaling – a feature that enables you to scale groups of EC2 instances.
Benefits of Auto Scaling
Autoscaling allows cloud application workloads and services to operate at the optimum performance and accessibility levels under various circumstances.
Here are the benefits of auto scaling.
Organizations and cloud customers that do not have autoscaling must continually add additional capacity to their systems in order to cope with possible traffic spikes and changes in traffic patterns. Automatic resource scaling allows resources to be increased only when they are required and decreased when traffic decreases. It is one method for companies to minimize their cloud computing expenses.
The AWS Management Console allows you to keep track of your usage and cost efficiency while using the AWS services. This makes it possible to pay just for what you have used and what you need. AWS monitors the capacity that is being utilized and alerts the user as required. AWS Autoscaling is a free service that reduces the number of resources that are not in use, thus assisting in averting overspending.
When resources are required, organizations may manually add them as needed; however, this is not a scalable or efficient method. The fact that autoscaling is automated and policy-driven means that it is more efficient than manual scaling since it activates only when required.
Improved Fault Tolerance
The failure of services may be caused by a variety of factors, including mistakes and issues with application logic, as well as defective hardware. In using autoscaling, the health and performance of a workload are continuously evaluated to replace and scale resources automatically as needed when workload increases.
If you use AWS Auto Scaling, your applications are constantly tracked, and their capacity is changed automatically to deliver consistent, predictable performance at the lowest feasible cost. As an example, AWS Auto Scaling allows you to build scaling plans for Amazon DynamoDB tables, Amazon EC2 instances and Spot Fleets, Amazon Aurora Replicas, and Amazon ECS jobs using a simple but powerful user interface while still maintaining high availability.
It is possible for cloud services to go unavailable if they become overburdened with resource-intensive applications or with more traffic than the configured instances are capable of handling. In the case of a traffic surge, autoscaling may help to guarantee that services remain available.
Manage Resource Provisioning
You can take advantage of Autoscaling to manage resource provisioning for all of your EC2 auto-scaling groups, as well as database tables being used in your application. You can quickly and easily observe the average usage of all of the scalable resources without switching between different consoles.
Better Reliability of Resources
AWS Auto Scaling is adept at identifying and tracking the performance of your scalable resources, i.e., resources that can scale. Such resources can span various cloud services as well. These resources include the following:
- Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) Components
- Aurora Replicas or Clusters
- Auto Scaling Groups
- DynamoDB Global Secondary Indexes or Tables
- Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)
- EC2 Spot Fleets
With the increase in demand, AWS Auto Scaling service can scale those resources automatically, and when the demand drops, it can scale them back down.
What Would Have Happened if Auto Scaling Wasn’t There?
Without autoscaling, resources are specified and limited within a predefined configuration for a particular set of resources. For instance, if a company wants to handle a significant analytics workload, it may need more computing and memory resources than specified initially. With an autoscaling strategy in place, compute and memory resources may be scaled automatically to process data on time.
Additionally, autoscaling is required to guarantee service availability. For instance, an organization may specify an initial set of instance types that it anticipates managing traffic for a specific service. If a traffic surge happens due to an event, the typical usage pattern for a service site may be significantly altered. Autoscaling may provide the resources required for a service to continue operating effectively while satisfying consumer demands by ensuring service availability during a traffic surge.
Autoscaling Services on AWS Cloud Platform
Here’s a glance at how AWS Auto Scaling can help manage scalability for the services running in AWS.
- EC2 Instance Auto Scaling – This helps you maintain the number of Amazon EC2 instances required by your application to meet incoming traffic demands. You may build EC2 auto-scaling groups that are made up of EC2 instances, and you can define minimum and maximum scaling thresholds for each of these groups.
- Amazon EC2 Spot Fleet Requests – A spot fleet comprises a group of EC2 spot instances. AWS Auto Scaling can adjust the capacity of Spot Fleet based on demand automatically.
- Elastic Container Service (ECS) Auto Scaling – AWS Auto Scaling automatically enhances or reduces the capacity of ECS container tasks on Amazon Web Services.
- DynamoDB Auto Scaling – This creates scaling policies for the table or secondary index. As an example, you might want to indicate whether you want to increase read and write capacity and the maximum and minimum provided capacity units. You can also indicate the maximum and the minimum number of provisioned capacity units for a table or an index.
Summary of AWS Auto Scaling
You can take advantage of AWS Auto Scaling recommendations to improve performance, reduce your expenses, etc. Note that AWS EC2 Auto Scaling may also be used in combination with Amazon EC2 Auto Scaling to scale more resources.
AWS Auto Scaling is available in several regions, including the public AWS regions of the United States East (Northern Virginia), United States East (Ohio), United States West (Oregon), European Union (Ireland), and the Asia Pacific. More regions will be added to this list shortly.