AWS Firecracker vs AWS Lambda

AWS Firecracker

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AWS Lambda

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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.

Decisions about AWS Firecracker and AWS Lambda
Tim Nolet
Founder, Engineer & Dishwasher at Checkly · | 13 upvotes · 42K views

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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      - 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.
      What companies use AWS Firecracker?
      What companies use AWS Lambda?
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        What tools integrate with AWS Firecracker?
        What tools integrate with AWS Lambda?

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        Blog Posts

        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.
        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.
        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.
        See all alternatives
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