Infrastructure As Code & Its Benefits To Cloud Development

Infrastructure As Code & Its Benefits To Cloud Development

As more and more businesses turn to cloud solutions to strengthen and streamline their business processes, it is important to decide on a cloud service provider(CSP) that best suits your needs. Although many companies have cloud services available, not all CSPs are created equal. Still, for first-time cloud adopters, it is often best to go with one of the most commonly used and well-established options, and in this case that would most likely be Amazon Web Services. Along with having the benefit of being the original player in the cloud arena (launching 2002), AWS also offers some of the best cloud development tools with its AWS Cloud Development Kit (CDK).

The AWS Cloud Development Kit (AWS CDK) is an open-source software development framework that you can use to model and provision your cloud application resources. Provisioning cloud applications can be a highly complex process involving writing extensive cloud formation templates or defacto IaC tools like Terraform. For early entrants into the AWS cloud journey learning curve of Terraform can become a challenge. The AWS CDK is specifically designed to address these challenges by providing high-level constructs to provision cloud resources. By utilizing high-level programming languages like Javascript, Typescript, Python cloud resources can be provisioned and managed. CDK generates the cloud formation templates underneath the covers, but there’s no need to manage those templates directly. This can enable automation of provisioning and managing tasks as a true IaC model and can be version controlled.

One of the ways that AWS makes these complex tasks so much easier is by facilitating the use of IaC tasks. Sometimes referred to as Underlying Infrastructure, IaC (Infrastructure as Code) allows you to programmatically manage and provision entire technology stacks through software or code, mitigating the need for complex and outdated manual processes by introducing a much higher degree of automation.

There are many obvious benefits to developing and utilizing IaC tasks during infrastructure development, both with regards to speed and effectiveness. In the past, the only way to ensure that new code would not conflict with the existing code would be an extensive software delivery process that would require several manual inputs from multiple parties, all of which would require considerable man-hours and open up the potential for human errors. By leveraging IaC tasks, developers can handle most of these tasks themselves, and at a level that is faster and more effective than the more traditional methods.

Of course, there are challenges to implementing IaC tasks into your development processes, as it requires the usage of higher-level or more descriptive language in order to achieve its complex deployment processes. Thankfully, the AWS CDK can help make this far easier, as it offers a number of familiar programming languages for your use, including JavaScript, TypeScript, Python, Java, and C#. Along with providing support for 5 of the top 10 most popular programming languages, there are also plans to implement more languages in the future based on user interest.

Cloud development is already a complex process, especially for those who are just getting started. That’s why Infrastructure as Code is such a worthwhile option for so many businesses. Of course, there are many other cloud-centric challenges out there to worry about, but if you need further information or assistance, we are here to help. Contact our team to learn about more services and how we can best serve your needs.

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