Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched a developer-focused service called OpsWorks, which claims to manage apps at any scale on the AWS cloud.
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Industry commentators have suggested that this could have the disruptive influence (positively or otherwise) on the still-nascent platform as a service (PaaS) space.
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More specifically, cloud watchers will be interested to see what happens in terms of the ongoing battle between Chef and Puppet as the two main competing services employed by DevOps (developer-operations) professionals to manage complex cloud-based infrastructures.
NOTE: AWS OpsWorks features include resource provisioning, configuration management, application deployment, software updates, monitoring, and access control.
OpsWorks effectively gives software application developers the capability to use what Amazon calls "layers," these are intended to act as blueprints for the instances of cloud that a developer deploys.
AWS OpsWorks lets programmers model and visualize an application with layers that define how to configure a set of resources that are managed together. Developers can also define the software configuration for each layer, including installation scripts and initialization tasks.
In a blog post, Amazon CTO Werner Vogels writes that OpsWorks is designed for IT administrators and ops-minded developers who want an easy way to manage applications of nearly any scale and complexity without sacrificing control.
"With OpsWorks you can create a logical architecture, provision resources based on that architecture, deploy your applications and all supporting software and packages in your chosen configuration, and then operate and maintain the application through lifecycle stages such as auto-scaling events and software updates."
Two years ago, Amazon launched the Elastic Beanstalk cloud application management service for building apps and web services with popular application containers such as Java, PHP, Python, Ruby, and .NET in the cloud.
"OpsWorks supports a wider variety of architectural patterns than Elastic Beanstalk ... from simple web applications to highly complex applications," said the company.