AWS Elastic Beanstalk vs Terraform: What are the differences?
AWS Elastic Beanstalk: Quickly deploy and manage applications in the AWS cloud. Once you upload your application, Elastic Beanstalk automatically handles the deployment details of capacity provisioning, load balancing, auto-scaling, and application health monitoring; Terraform: Describe your complete infrastructure as code and build resources across providers. With Terraform, you describe your complete infrastructure as code, even as it spans multiple service providers. Your servers may come from AWS, your DNS may come from CloudFlare, and your database may come from Heroku. Terraform will build all these resources across all these providers in parallel.
AWS Elastic Beanstalk can be classified as a tool in the "Platform as a Service" category, while Terraform is grouped under "Infrastructure Build Tools".
Some of the features offered by AWS Elastic Beanstalk are:
- Elastic Beanstalk is built using familiar software stacks such as the Apache HTTP Server for Node.js, PHP and Python, Passenger for Ruby, IIS 7.5 for .NET, and Apache Tomcat for Java
- There is no additional charge for Elastic Beanstalk - you pay only for the AWS resources needed to store and run your applications.
- Easy to begin – Elastic Beanstalk is a quick and simple way to deploy your application to AWS. You simply use the AWS Management Console, Git deployment, or an integrated development environment (IDE) such as Eclipse or Visual Studio to upload your application
On the other hand, Terraform provides the following key features:
- Infrastructure as Code: Infrastructure is described using a high-level configuration syntax. This allows a blueprint of your datacenter to be versioned and treated as you would any other code. Additionally, infrastructure can be shared and re-used.
- Execution Plans: Terraform has a "planning" step where it generates an execution plan. The execution plan shows what Terraform will do when you call apply. This lets you avoid any surprises when Terraform manipulates infrastructure.
- Resource Graph: Terraform builds a graph of all your resources, and parallelizes the creation and modification of any non-dependent resources. Because of this, Terraform builds infrastructure as efficiently as possible, and operators get insight into dependencies in their infrastructure.
"Integrates with other aws services" is the top reason why over 76 developers like AWS Elastic Beanstalk, while over 101 developers mention "Infrastructure as code" as the leading cause for choosing Terraform.
Terraform is an open source tool with 26.4K GitHub stars and 6.54K GitHub forks. Here's a link to Terraform's open source repository on GitHub.
According to the StackShare community, Terraform has a broader approval, being mentioned in 1372 company stacks & 7411 developers stacks; compared to AWS Elastic Beanstalk, which is listed in 589 company stacks and 1263 developer stacks.
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