AWS launched in 2006 from the internal infrastructure that Amazon.com built to handle its online retail operations. AWS was one of the first companies to introduce a pay-as-you-go cloud computing model that scales to provide users with compute, storage or throughput as needed.
Amazon Web Services provides services from dozens of data centers spread across availability zones (AZs) in regions across the world. An AZ represents a location that typically contains multiple physical data centers, while a region is a collection of AZs in geographic proximity connected by low-latency network links.
More than 100 services comprise the Amazon Web Services portfolio, including those for compute, databases, infrastructure management, application development and security. These services, by category, include:
An admin can manage and track cloud resource configuration via AWS Config and AWS Config Rules. Those tools, along with AWS Trusted Advisor, can help an IT team avoid improperly configured and needlessly expensive cloud resource deployments.
AWS provides several automation tools in its portfolio. An admin can automate infrastructure provisioning via AWS Cloud Formation templates, and also use AWS Ops Works and Chef to automate infrastructure and system configurations.