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AWS Firecracker

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AWS Firecracker vs AWS Lambda: What are the differences?

Developers describe AWS Firecracker as "Secure and fast microVMs for serverless computing". Firecracker is an open source virtualization technology that is purpose-built for creating and managing secure, multi-tenant container and function-based services that provide serverless operational models. Firecracker runs workloads in lightweight virtual machines, called microVMs, which combine the security and isolation properties provided by hardware virtualization technology with the speed and flexibility of containers. On the other hand, AWS Lambda is detailed as "Automatically run code in response to modifications to objects in Amazon S3 buckets, messages in Kinesis streams, or updates in DynamoDB". AWS Lambda is a compute service that runs your code in response to events and automatically manages the underlying compute resources for you. You can use AWS Lambda to extend other AWS services with custom logic, or create your own back-end services that operate at AWS scale, performance, and security.

AWS Firecracker and AWS Lambda can be primarily classified as "Serverless / Task Processing" tools.

AWS Firecracker is an open source tool with 8.6K GitHub stars and 521 GitHub forks. Here's a link to AWS Firecracker's open source repository on GitHub.

Advice on AWS Firecracker and AWS Lambda

Need advice on what platform, systems and tools to use.

Evaluating whether to start a new digital business for which we will need to build a website that handles all traffic. Website only right now. May add smartphone apps later. No desktop app will ever be added. Website to serve various countries and languages. B2B and B2C type customers. Need to handle heavy traffic, be low cost, and scale well.

We are open to either build it on AWS or on Microsoft Azure.

Apologies if I'm leaving out some info. My first post. :) Thanks in advance!

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Replies (2)
Anis Zehani

I recommend this : -Spring reactive for back end : the fact it's reactive (async) it consumes half of the resources that a sync platform needs (so less CPU -> less money). -Angular : Web Front end ; it's gives you the possibility to use PWA which is a cheap replacement for a mobile app (but more less popular). -Docker images. -Kubernetes to orchestrate all the containers. -I Use Jenkins / blueocean, ansible for my CI/CD (with Github of course) -AWS of course : u can run a K8S cluster there, make it multi AZ (availability zones) to be highly available, use a load balancer and an auto scaler and ur good to go. -You can store data by taking any managed DB or u can deploy ur own (cheap but risky).

You pay less money, but u need some technical 2 - 3 guys to make that done.

Good luck

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My advice will be Front end: React Backend: Language: Java, Kotlin. Database: SQL: Postgres, MySQL, Aurora NOSQL: Mongo db. Caching: Redis. Public : Spring Webflux for async public facing operation. Admin api: Spring boot, Hibrernate, Rest API. Build Container image. Kuberenetes: AWS EKS, AWS ECS, Google GKE. Use Jenkins for CI/CD pipeline. Buddy works is good for AWS. Static content: Host on AWS S3 bucket, Use Cloudfront or Cloudflare as CDN.

Serverless Solution: Api gateway Lambda, Serveless Aurora (SQL). AWS S3 bucket.

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Decisions about AWS Firecracker and AWS Lambda

When adding a new feature to Checkly rearchitecting some older piece, I tend to pick Heroku for rolling it out. But not always, because sometimes I pick AWS Lambda . The short story:

  • Developer Experience trumps everything.
  • AWS Lambda is cheap. Up to a limit though. This impact not only your wallet.
  • If you need geographic spread, AWS is lonely at the top.
The setup

Recently, I was doing a brainstorm at a startup here in Berlin on the future of their infrastructure. They were ready to move on from their initial, almost 100% Ec2 + Chef based setup. Everything was on the table. But we crossed out a lot quite quickly:

  • Pure, uncut, self hosted Kubernetes — way too much complexity
  • Managed Kubernetes in various flavors — still too much complexity
  • Zeit — Maybe, but no Docker support
  • Elastic Beanstalk — Maybe, bit old but does the job
  • Heroku
  • Lambda

It became clear a mix of PaaS and FaaS was the way to go. What a surprise! That is exactly what I use for Checkly! But when do you pick which model?

I chopped that question up into the following categories:

  • Developer Experience / DX 🤓
  • Ops Experience / OX 🐂 (?)
  • Cost 💵
  • Lock in 🔐

Read the full post linked below for all details

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Pros of AWS Firecracker
Pros of AWS Lambda
    Be the first to leave a pro
    • 126
      No infrastructure
    • 81
      Cheap
    • 68
      Quick
    • 57
      Stateless
    • 47
      No deploy, no server, great sleep
    • 9
      AWS Lambda went down taking many sites with it
    • 5
      Easy to deploy
    • 5
      Event Driven Governance
    • 5
      Extensive API
    • 4
      Auto scale and cost effective
    • 3
      VPC Support
    • 1
      Integrated with various AWS services

    Sign up to add or upvote prosMake informed product decisions

    Cons of AWS Firecracker
    Cons of AWS Lambda
      Be the first to leave a con
      • 5
        Cant execute ruby or go
      • 0
        Can't execute PHP w/o significant effort

      Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

      - No public GitHub repository available -

      What is AWS Firecracker?

      Firecracker is an open source virtualization technology that is purpose-built for creating and managing secure, multi-tenant container and function-based services that provide serverless operational models. Firecracker runs workloads in lightweight virtual machines, called microVMs, which combine the security and isolation properties provided by hardware virtualization technology with the speed and flexibility of containers.

      What is AWS Lambda?

      AWS Lambda is a compute service that runs your code in response to events and automatically manages the underlying compute resources for you. You can use AWS Lambda to extend other AWS services with custom logic, or create your own back-end services that operate at AWS scale, performance, and security.

      Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

      What companies use AWS Firecracker?
      What companies use AWS Lambda?
      See which teams inside your own company are using AWS Firecracker or AWS Lambda.
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      Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions

      What tools integrate with AWS Firecracker?
      What tools integrate with AWS Lambda?

      Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions

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      What are some alternatives to AWS Firecracker and AWS Lambda?
      Kubernetes
      Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.
      Docker
      The Docker Platform is the industry-leading container platform for continuous, high-velocity innovation, enabling organizations to seamlessly build and share any application — from legacy to what comes next — and securely run them anywhere
      Serverless
      Build applications comprised of microservices that run in response to events, auto-scale for you, and only charge you when they run. This lowers the total cost of maintaining your apps, enabling you to build more logic, faster. The Framework uses new event-driven compute services, like AWS Lambda, Google CloudFunctions, and more.
      Azure Functions
      Azure Functions is an event driven, compute-on-demand experience that extends the existing Azure application platform with capabilities to implement code triggered by events occurring in virtually any Azure or 3rd party service as well as on-premises systems.
      Cloud Functions for Firebase
      Cloud Functions for Firebase lets you create functions that are triggered by Firebase products, such as changes to data in the Realtime Database, uploads to Cloud Storage, new user sign ups via Authentication, and conversion events in Analytics.
      See all alternatives