Amazon DynamoDB Review

We utilize CloudWatch monitoring, the Simple Notification Service, and the VPC solution for VPN connections.


What is most valuable?

We host the cloud version of our software, ENSUR by DocXellent, on EC2 instances with fifteen separate installations currently.

These low-cost, flexible, and scalable VMs are an excellent value for the service they provide.

We also utilize CloudWatch monitoring, the Simple Notification Service, and the VPC solution for VPN connections for us, and for our clients, to these instances.

How has it helped my organization?

Previously, our product was exclusively sold as an on-premises solution. Once we decided on AWS for a cloud hosting platform, we were able to increase our sales dramatically. Within less than two years of offering this option, cloud hosted sales now make up more than 50% of our new business.

What needs improvement?

AWS is forward thinking and always adding new features. I generally cannot think of an area of improvement.

To be honest, AWS and their people know way more about the hosting and infrastructure needs of software developers than me and my team. I can’t think of any features that that could additionally add.

If I were to pick on one area to improve and an area in which they are not equal to or superior to the competition, I would say the user interface. It is far more simplistic that Azure’s slick presentation.

Of course, that is by choice, like the Amazon experience. But there are instances where the next step is not as logically presented as in Azure.

I still maintain that AWS is the unquestioned market leader in regards to features offered and is always introducing new ones in response to what their customers ask for.

They also are leaders in price, ease of use, and support, making them the obvious choice for my company’s cloud IaaS provider.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have used Amazon AWS for three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There have been a couple of well-publicized instances of non-availability, but I think overall downtime of a few hours per year is acceptable.

The biggest problem is that everybody knows about downtime because of how public AWS’s failures are with their high-profile customers, who make news with their downtime.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have had no problems with scalability.

How is customer service and technical support?

I would give technical support a rating of 10/10. AWS stands for AWesome Support! They know way more about problems than I do and often patiently teach me while solving an issue.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We occasionally use Azure, alongside AWS, because we have a monthly credit from Microsoft. But AWS was first and all our commercial accounts are on AWS.

How was the initial setup?

I was able to setup a prototype of our application by myself in half an hour. Since then, whenever I need to do something new, rather than read a whitepaper, I just call support and they walk me through it. This is part of the support they happily provide AND without griping about me not trying it by myself first.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

You don’t need to look anywhere else. AWS is the leader in price and features, so why mess with success.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated Azure, Google, Rackspace and several smaller, now extinct companies.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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