Tag Archives: CI/CD

Cross-account and cross-region deployment using GitHub actions and AWS CDK

Post Syndicated from DAMODAR SHENVI WAGLE original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/cross-account-and-cross-region-deployment-using-github-actions-and-aws-cdk/

GitHub Actions is a feature on GitHub’s popular development platform that helps you automate your software development workflows in the same place you store code and collaborate on pull requests and issues. You can write individual tasks called actions, and combine them to create a custom workflow. Workflows are custom automated processes that you can set up in your repository to build, test, package, release, or deploy any code project on GitHub.

A cross-account deployment strategy is a CI/CD pattern or model in AWS. In this pattern, you have a designated AWS account called tools, where all CI/CD pipelines reside. Deployment is carried out by these pipelines across other AWS accounts, which may correspond to dev, staging, or prod. For more information about a cross-account strategy in reference to CI/CD pipelines on AWS, see Building a Secure Cross-Account Continuous Delivery Pipeline.

In this post, we show you how to use GitHub Actions to deploy an AWS Lambda-based API to an AWS account and Region using the cross-account deployment strategy.

Using GitHub Actions may have associated costs in addition to the cost associated with the AWS resources you create. For more information, see About billing for GitHub Actions.


Before proceeding any further, you need to identify and designate two AWS accounts required for the solution to work:

  • Tools – Where you create an AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) user for GitHub Actions to use to carry out deployment.
  • Target – Where deployment occurs. You can call this as your dev/stage/prod environment.

You also need to create two AWS account profiles in ~/.aws/credentials for the tools and target accounts, if you don’t already have them. These profiles need to have sufficient permissions to run an AWS Cloud Development Kit (AWS CDK) stack. They should be your private profiles and only be used during the course of this use case. So, it should be fine if you want to use admin privileges. Don’t share the profile details, especially if it has admin privileges. I recommend removing the profile when you’re finished with this walkthrough. For more information about creating an AWS account profile, see Configuring the AWS CLI.

Solution overview

You start by building the necessary resources in the tools account (an IAM user with permissions to assume a specific IAM role from the target account to carry out deployment). For simplicity, we refer to this IAM role as the cross-account role, as specified in the architecture diagram.

You also create the cross-account role in the target account that trusts the IAM user in the tools account and provides the required permissions for AWS CDK to bootstrap and initiate creating an AWS CloudFormation deployment stack in the target account. GitHub Actions uses the tools account IAM user credentials to the assume the cross-account role to carry out deployment.

In addition, you create an AWS CloudFormation execution role in the target account, which AWS CloudFormation service assumes in the target account. This role has permissions to create your API resources, such as a Lambda function and Amazon API Gateway, in the target account. This role is passed to AWS CloudFormation service via AWS CDK.

You then configure your tools account IAM user credentials in your Git secrets and define the GitHub Actions workflow, which triggers upon pushing code to a specific branch of the repo. The workflow then assumes the cross-account role and initiates deployment.

The following diagram illustrates the solution architecture and shows AWS resources across the tools and target accounts.

Architecture diagram

Creating an IAM user

You start by creating an IAM user called git-action-deployment-user in the tools account. The user needs to have only programmatic access.

  1. Clone the GitHub repo aws-cross-account-cicd-git-actions-prereq and navigate to folder tools-account. Here you find the JSON parameter file src/cdk-stack-param.json, which contains the parameter CROSS_ACCOUNT_ROLE_ARN, which represents the ARN for the cross-account role we create in the next step in the target account. In the ARN, replace <target-account-id> with the actual account ID for your designated AWS target account.                                             Replace <target-account-id> with designated AWS account id
  2. Run deploy.sh by passing the name of the tools AWS account profile you created earlier. The script compiles the code, builds a package, and uses the AWS CDK CLI to bootstrap and deploy the stack. See the following code:
cd aws-cross-account-cicd-git-actions-prereq/tools-account/

You should now see two stacks in the tools account: CDKToolkit and cf-GitActionDeploymentUserStack. AWS CDK creates the CDKToolkit stack when we bootstrap the AWS CDK app. This creates an Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) bucket needed to hold deployment assets such as a CloudFormation template and Lambda code package. cf-GitActionDeploymentUserStack creates the IAM user with permission to assume git-action-cross-account-role (which you create in the next step). On the Outputs tab of the stack, you can find the user access key and the AWS Secrets Manager ARN that holds the user secret. To retrieve the secret, you need to go to Secrets Manager. Record the secret to use later.

Stack that creates IAM user with its secret stored in secrets manager

Creating a cross-account IAM role

In this step, you create two IAM roles in the target account: git-action-cross-account-role and git-action-cf-execution-role.

git-action-cross-account-role provides required deployment-specific permissions to the IAM user you created in the last step. The IAM user in the tools account can assume this role and perform the following tasks:

  • Upload deployment assets such as the CloudFormation template and Lambda code package to a designated S3 bucket via AWS CDK
  • Create a CloudFormation stack that deploys API Gateway and Lambda using AWS CDK

AWS CDK passes git-action-cf-execution-role to AWS CloudFormation to create, update, and delete the CloudFormation stack. It has permissions to create API Gateway and Lambda resources in the target account.

To deploy these two roles using AWS CDK, complete the following steps:

  1. In the already cloned repo from the previous step, navigate to the folder target-account. This folder contains the JSON parameter file cdk-stack-param.json, which contains the parameter TOOLS_ACCOUNT_USER_ARN, which represents the ARN for the IAM user you previously created in the tools account. In the ARN, replace <tools-account-id> with the actual account ID for your designated AWS tools account.                                             Replace <tools-account-id> with designated AWS account id
  2. Run deploy.sh by passing the name of the target AWS account profile you created earlier. The script compiles the code, builds the package, and uses the AWS CDK CLI to bootstrap and deploy the stack. See the following code:
cd ../target-account/

You should now see two stacks in your target account: CDKToolkit and cf-CrossAccountRolesStack. AWS CDK creates the CDKToolkit stack when we bootstrap the AWS CDK app. This creates an S3 bucket to hold deployment assets such as the CloudFormation template and Lambda code package. The cf-CrossAccountRolesStack creates the two IAM roles we discussed at the beginning of this step. The IAM role git-action-cross-account-role now has the IAM user added to its trust policy. On the Outputs tab of the stack, you can find these roles’ ARNs. Record these ARNs as you conclude this step.

Stack that creates IAM roles to carry out cross account deployment

Configuring secrets

One of the GitHub actions we use is aws-actions/[email protected]. This action configures AWS credentials and Region environment variables for use in the GitHub Actions workflow. The AWS CDK CLI detects the environment variables to determine the credentials and Region to use for deployment.

For our cross-account deployment use case, aws-actions/[email protected] takes three pieces of sensitive information besides the Region: AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID, AWS_ACCESS_KEY_SECRET, and CROSS_ACCOUNT_ROLE_TO_ASSUME. Secrets are recommended for storing sensitive pieces of information in the GitHub repo. It keeps the information in an encrypted format. For more information about referencing secrets in the workflow, see Creating and storing encrypted secrets.

Before we continue, you need your own empty GitHub repo to complete this step. Use an existing repo if you have one, or create a new repo. You configure secrets in this repo. In the next section, you check in the code provided by the post to deploy a Lambda-based API CDK stack into this repo.

  1. On the GitHub console, navigate to your repo settings and choose the Secrets tab.
  2. Add a new secret with name as TOOLS_ACCOUNT_ACCESS_KEY_ID.
  3. Copy the access key ID from the output OutGitActionDeploymentUserAccessKey of the stack GitActionDeploymentUserStack in tools account.
  4. Enter the ID in the Value field.                                                                                                                                                                Create secret
  5. Repeat this step to add two more secrets:
    • TOOLS_ACCOUNT_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY (value retrieved from the AWS Secrets Manager in tools account)
    • CROSS_ACCOUNT_ROLE (value copied from the output OutCrossAccountRoleArn of the stack cf-CrossAccountRolesStack in target account)

You should now have three secrets as shown below.

All required git secrets

Deploying with GitHub Actions

As the final step, first clone your empty repo where you set up your secrets. Download and copy the code from the GitHub repo into your empty repo. The folder structure of your repo should mimic the folder structure of source repo. See the following screenshot.

Folder structure of the Lambda API code

We can take a detailed look at the code base. First and foremost, we use Typescript to deploy our Lambda API, so we need an AWS CDK app and AWS CDK stack. The app is defined in app.ts under the repo root folder location. The stack definition is located under the stack-specific folder src/git-action-demo-api-stack. The Lambda code is located under the Lambda-specific folder src/git-action-demo-api-stack/lambda/ git-action-demo-lambda.

We also have a deployment script deploy.sh, which compiles the app and Lambda code, packages the Lambda code into a .zip file, bootstraps the app by copying the assets to an S3 bucket, and deploys the stack. To deploy the stack, AWS CDK has to pass CFN_EXECUTION_ROLE to AWS CloudFormation; this role is configured in src/params/cdk-stack-param.json. Replace <target-account-id> with your own designated AWS target account ID.

Update cdk-stack-param.json in git-actions-cross-account-cicd repo with TARGET account id

Finally, we define the Git Actions workflow under the .github/workflows/ folder per the specifications defined by GitHub Actions. GitHub Actions automatically identifies the workflow in this location and triggers it if conditions match. Our workflow .yml file is named in the format cicd-workflow-<region>.yml, where <region> in the file name identifies the deployment Region in the target account. In our use case, we use us-east-1 and us-west-2, which is also defined as an environment variable in the workflow.

The GitHub Actions workflow has a standard hierarchy. The workflow is a collection of jobs, which are collections of one or more steps. Each job runs on a virtual machine called a runner, which can either be GitHub-hosted or self-hosted. We use the GitHub-hosted runner ubuntu-latest because it works well for our use case. For more information about GitHub-hosted runners, see Virtual environments for GitHub-hosted runners. For more information about the software preinstalled on GitHub-hosted runners, see Software installed on GitHub-hosted runners.

The workflow also has a trigger condition specified at the top. You can schedule the trigger based on the cron settings or trigger it upon code pushed to a specific branch in the repo. See the following code:

name: Lambda API CICD Workflow
# This workflow is triggered on pushes to the repository branch master.
      - master

# Initializes environment variables for the workflow
  REGION: us-east-1 # Deployment Region

    name: Build And Deploy
    # This job runs on Linux
    runs-on: ubuntu-latest
      # Checkout code from git repo branch configured above, under folder $GITHUB_WORKSPACE.
      - name: Checkout
        uses: actions/[email protected]
      # Sets up AWS profile.
      - name: Configure AWS credentials
        uses: aws-actions/[email protected]
          aws-access-key-id: ${{ secrets.TOOLS_ACCOUNT_ACCESS_KEY_ID }}
          aws-secret-access-key: ${{ secrets.TOOLS_ACCOUNT_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY }}
          aws-region: ${{ env.REGION }}
          role-to-assume: ${{ secrets.CROSS_ACCOUNT_ROLE }}
          role-duration-seconds: 1200
          role-session-name: GitActionDeploymentSession
      # Installs CDK and other prerequisites
      - name: Prerequisite Installation
        run: |
          sudo npm install -g [email protected]
          cdk --version
          aws s3 ls
      # Build and Deploy CDK application
      - name: Build & Deploy
        run: |
          cd $GITHUB_WORKSPACE
          ls -a
          chmod 700 deploy.sh

For more information about triggering workflows, see Triggering a workflow with events.

We have configured a single job workflow for our use case that runs on ubuntu-latest and is triggered upon a code push to the master branch. When you create an empty repo, master branch becomes the default branch. The workflow has four steps:

  1. Check out the code from the repo, for which we use a standard Git action actions/[email protected]. The code is checked out into a folder defined by the variable $GITHUB_WORKSPACE, so it becomes the root location of our code.
  2. Configure AWS credentials using aws-actions/[email protected]. This action is configured as explained in the previous section.
  3. Install your prerequisites. In our use case, the only prerequisite we need is AWS CDK. Upon installing AWS CDK, we can do a quick test using the AWS Command Line Interface (AWS CLI) command aws s3 ls. If cross-account access was successfully established in the previous step of the workflow, this command should return a list of buckets in the target account.
  4. Navigate to root location of the code $GITHUB_WORKSPACE and run the deploy.sh script.

You can check in the code into the master branch of your repo. This should trigger the workflow, which you can monitor on the Actions tab of your repo. The commit message you provide is displayed for the respective run of the workflow.

Workflow for region us-east-1 Workflow for region us-west-2

You can choose the workflow link and monitor the log for each individual step of the workflow.

Git action workflow steps

In the target account, you should now see the CloudFormation stack cf-GitActionDemoApiStack in us-east-1 and us-west-2.

Lambda API stack in us-east-1 Lambda API stack in us-west-2

The API resource URL DocUploadRestApiResourceUrl is located on the Outputs tab of the stack. You can invoke your API by choosing this URL on the browser.

API Invocation Output

Clean up

To remove all the resources from the target and tools accounts, complete the following steps in their given order:

  1. Delete the CloudFormation stack cf-GitActionDemoApiStack from the target account. This step removes the Lambda and API Gateway resources and their associated IAM roles.
  2. Delete the CloudFormation stack cf-CrossAccountRolesStack from the target account. This removes the cross-account role and CloudFormation execution role you created.
  3. Go to the CDKToolkit stack in the target account and note the BucketName on the Output tab. Empty that bucket and then delete the stack.
  4. Delete the CloudFormation stack cf-GitActionDeploymentUserStack from tools account. This removes cross-account-deploy-user IAM user.
  5. Go to the CDKToolkit stack in the tools account and note the BucketName on the Output tab. Empty that bucket and then delete the stack.

Security considerations

Cross-account IAM roles are very powerful and need to be handled carefully. For this post, we strictly limited the cross-account IAM role to specific Amazon S3 and CloudFormation permissions. This makes sure that the cross-account role can only do those things. The actual creation of Lambda, API Gateway, and Amazon DynamoDB resources happens via the AWS CloudFormation IAM role, which AWS  CloudFormation assumes in the target AWS account.

Make sure that you use secrets to store your sensitive workflow configurations, as specified in the section Configuring secrets.


In this post we showed how you can leverage GitHub’s popular software development platform to securely deploy to AWS accounts and Regions using GitHub actions and AWS CDK.

Build your own GitHub Actions CI/CD workflow as shown in this post.

About the author


Damodar Shenvi Wagle is a Cloud Application Architect at AWS Professional Services. His areas of expertise include architecting serverless solutions, ci/cd and automation.

How Pushly Media used AWS to pivot and quickly spin up a StartUp

Post Syndicated from Eddie Moser original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/how-pushly-media-used-aws-to-pivot-and-quickly-spin-up-a-startup/

This is a guest post from Pushly. In their own words, “Pushly provides a scalable, easy-to-use platform designed to deliver targeted and timely content via web push notifications across all modern desktop browsers and Android devices.”


As a software engineer at Pushly, I’m part of a team of developers responsible for building our SaaS platform.

Our customers are content publishers spanning the news, ecommerce, and food industries, with the primary goal of increasing page views and paid subscriptions, ultimately resulting in increased revenue.

Pushly’s platform is designed to integrate seamlessly into a publisher’s workflow and enables advanced features such as customizable opt-in flow management, behavioral targeting, and real-time reporting and campaign delivery analytics.

As developers, we face various challenges to make all this work seamlessly. That’s why we turned to Amazon Web Services (AWS). In this post, I explain why and how we use AWS to enable the Pushly user experience.

At Pushly, my primary focus areas are developer and platform user experience. On the developer side, I’m responsible for building and maintaining easy-to-use APIs and a web SDK. On the UX side, I’m responsible for building a user-friendly and stable platform interface.

The CI/CD process

We’re a cloud native company and have gone all in with AWS.

AWS CodePipeline lets us automate the software release process and release new features to our users faster. Rapid delivery is key here, and CodePipeline lets us automate our build, test, and release process so we can quickly and easily test each code change and fail fast if needed. CodePipeline is vital to ensuring the quality of our code by running each change through a staging and release process.

One of our use cases is continuous reiteration deployment. We foster an environment where developers can fully function in their own mindset while adhering to our company’s standards and the architecture within AWS.

We deploy code multiple times per day and rely on AWS services to run through all checks and make sure everything is packaged uniformly. We want to fully test in a staging environment before moving to a customer-facing production environment.

The development and staging environments

Our development environment allows developers to securely pull down applications as needed and access the required services in a development AWS account. After an application is tested and is ready for staging, the application is deployed to our staging environment—a smaller reproduction of our production environment—so we can test how the changes work together. This flow allows us to see how the changes run within the entire Pushly ecosystem in a secure environment without pushing to production.

When testing is complete, a pull request is created for stakeholder review and to merge the changes to production branches. We use AWS CodeBuild, CodePipeline, and a suite of in-house tools to ensure that the application has been thoroughly tested to our standards before being deployed to our production AWS account.

Here is a high level diagram of the environment described above:

Diagram showing at a high level the Pushly environment.Ease of development

Ease of development was—and is—key. AWS provides the tools that allow us to quickly iterate and adapt to ever-changing customer needs. The infrastructure as code (IaC) approach of AWS CloudFormation allows us to quickly and simply define our infrastructure in an easily reproducible manner and rapidly create and modify environments at scale. This has given us the confidence to take on new challenges without concern over infrastructure builds impacting the final product or causing delays in development.

The Pushly team

Although Pushly’s developers all have the skill-set to work on both front-end-facing and back-end-facing projects, primary responsibilities are split between front-end and back-end developers. Developers that primarily focus on front-end projects concentrate on public-facing projects and internal management systems. The back-end team focuses on the underlying architecture, delivery systems, and the ecosystem as a whole. Together, we create and maintain a product that allows you to segment and target your audiences, which ensures relevant delivery of your content via web push notifications.

Early on we ran all services entirely off of AWS Lambda. This allowed us to develop new features quickly in an elastic, cost efficient way. As our applications have matured, we’ve identified some services that would benefit from an always on environment and moved them to AWS Elastic Beanstalk. The capability to quickly iterate and move from service to service is a credit to AWS, because it allows us to customize and tailor our services across multiple AWS offerings.

Elastic Beanstalk has been the fastest and simplest way for us to deploy this suite of services on AWS; their blue/green deployments allow us to maintain minimal downtime during deployments. We can easily configure deployment environments with capacity provisioning, load balancing, autoscaling, and application health monitoring.

The business side

We had several business drivers behind choosing AWS: we wanted to make it easier to meet customer demands and continually scale as much as needed without worrying about the impact on development or on our customers.

Using AWS services allowed us to build our platform from inception to our initial beta offering in fewer than 2 months! AWS made it happen with tools for infrastructure deployment on top of the software deployment. Specifically, IaC allowed us to tailor our infrastructure to our specific needs and be confident that it’s always going to work.

On the infrastructure side, we knew that we wanted to have a staging environment that truly mirrored the production environment, rather than managing two entirely disparate systems. We could provide different sets of mappings based on accounts and use the templates across multiple environments. This functionality allows us to use the exact same code we use in our current production environment and easily spin up additional environments in 2 hours.

The need for speed

It took a very short time to get our project up and running, which included rewriting different pieces of the infrastructure in some places and completely starting from scratch in others.

One of the new services that we adopted is AWS CodeArtifact. It lets us have fully customized private artifact stores in the cloud. We can keep our in-house libraries within our current AWS accounts instead of relying on third-party services.

CodeBuild lets us compile source code, run test suites, and produce software packages that are ready to deploy while only having to pay for the runtime we use. With CodeBuild, you don’t need to provision, manage, and scale your own build servers, which saves us time.

The new tools that AWS is releasing are going to even further streamline our processes. We’re interested in the impact that CodeArtifact will have on our ability to share libraries in Pushly and with other business units.

Cost savings is key

What are we saving by choosing AWS? A lot. AWS lets us scale while keeping costs at a minimum. This was, and continues to be, a major determining factor when choosing a cloud provider.

By using Lambda and designing applications with horizontal scale in mind, we have scaled from processing millions of requests per day to hundreds of millions, with very little change to the underlying infrastructure. Due to the nature of our offering, our traffic patterns are unpredictable. Lambda allows us to process these requests elastically and avoid over-provisioning. As a result, we can increase our throughput tenfold at any time, pay for the few minutes of extra compute generated by a sudden burst of traffic, and scale back down in seconds.

In addition to helping us process these requests, AWS has been instrumental in helping us manage an ever-growing data warehouse of clickstream data. With Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose, we automatically convert all incoming events to Parquet and store them in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), which we can query directly using Amazon Athena within minutes of being received. This has once again allowed us to scale our near-real-time data reporting to a degree that would have otherwise required a significant investment of time and resources.

As we look ahead, one thing we’re interested in is Lambda custom stacks, part of AWS’s Lambda-backed custom resources. Amazon supports many languages, so we can run almost every language we need. If we want to switch to a language that AWS doesn’t support by default, they still provide a way for us to customize a solution. All we have to focus on is the code we’re writing!

The importance of speed for us and our customers is one of our highest priorities. Think of a news publisher in the middle of a briefing who wants to get the story out before any of the competition and is relying on Pushly—our confidence in our ability to deliver on this need comes from AWS services enabling our code to perform to its fullest potential.

Another way AWS has met our needs was in the ease of using Amazon ElastiCache, a fully managed in-memory data store and cache service. Although we try to be as horizontal thinking as possible, some services just can’t scale with the immediate elasticity we need to handle a sudden burst of requests. We avoid duplicate lookups for the same resources with ElastiCache. ElastiCache allows us to process requests quicker and protects our infrastructure from being overwhelmed.

In addition to caching, ElastiCache is a great tool for job locking. By locking messages by their ID as soon as they are received, we can use the near-unlimited throughput of Amazon Simple Queue Service (Amazon SQS) in a massively parallel environment without worrying that messages are processed more than once.

The heart of our offering is in the segmentation of subscribers. We allow building complex queries in our dashboard that calculate reach in real time and are available to use immediately after creation. These queries are often never-before-seen and may contain custom properties provided by our clients, operate on complex data types, and include geospatial conditions. No matter the size of the audience, we see consistent sub-second query times when calculating reach. We can provide this to our clients using Amazon Elasticsearch Service (Amazon ES) as the backbone to our subscriber store.


AWS has countless positives, but one key theme that we continue to see is overall ease of use, which enables us to rapidly iterate. That’s why we rely on so many different AWS services—Amazon API Gateway with Lambda integration, Elastic Beanstalk, Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS), ElastiCache, and many more.

We feel very secure about our future working with AWS and our continued ability to improve, integrate, and provide a quality service. The AWS team has been extremely supportive. If we run into something that we need to adjust outside of the standard parameters, or that requires help from the AWS specialists, we can reach out and get feedback from subject matter experts quickly. The all-around capabilities of AWS and its teams have helped Pushly get where we are, and we’ll continue to rely on them for the foreseeable future.


Automated CloudFormation Testing Pipeline with TaskCat and CodePipeline

Post Syndicated from Raleigh Hansen original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/automated-cloudformation-testing-pipeline-with-taskcat-and-codepipeline/

Researchers at Academic Medical Centers (AMCs) use programs such as Observational Health Data Sciences and Informatics (OHDSI) and Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) to interact with healthcare data. Our internal team at AWS has provided solutions such as OHDSI-on-AWS and REDCap environments on AWS to help clinicians analyze healthcare data in the AWS Cloud. Occasionally, these solutions break due to a change in some portion of the solution (e.g. updated services). The Automated Solutions Testing Pipeline enables our team to take a proactive approach to discovering these breaks and their cause in order to expedite the repair process.

OHDSI-on-AWS provides these AMCs with the ability to store and analyze observational health data in the AWS cloud. REDCap is a web application for managing surveys and databases with HIPAA-compliant environments. Using our solutions, these programs can be spun up easily on the AWS infrastructure using AWS CloudFormation templates.

Updates to AWS services and other program libraries can cause the CloudFormation template to fail during deployment. Other times, the outputs may not be operating correctly, or the template may not work on every AWS region. This can create a negative customer experience. Some customers may discover this kind of break and decide to not move forward with using the solution. Other customers may not even realize the solution is broken, so they might be unknowingly working with an uncooperative environment. Furthermore, we cannot always provide fast support to the customers who contact us about broken solutions. To meet our team’s needs and the needs of our customers, we decided to focus our efforts on taking a CI/CD approach to maintain these solutions. We developed the Automated Testing Pipeline which regularly tests solution deployment and changes to source files.

This post shows the features of the Automated Testing Pipeline and provides resources to help you get started using it with your AWS account.

Overview of Automated Testing Pipeline Solution

The Automated Testing Pipeline solution as a whole is designed to automatically deploy CloudFormation templates, run tests against the deployed environments, send notifications if an issue is discovered, and allow for insightful testing data to be easily explored.

CloudFormation templates to be tested are stored in an Amazon S3 bucket. Custom test scripts and TaskCat deployment configuration are stored in an AWS CodeCommit repository.

The pipeline is triggered in one of three ways: an update to the CloudFormation Template in S3, an Amazon CloudWatch events rule, and an update to the testing source code repository. Once the pipeline has been triggered, AWS CodeBuild pulls the source code to deploy the CloudFormation template, test the deployed environment, and store the results in an S3 bucket. If any failures are discovered, subscribers to the failure topic are notified. The following diagram shows its overall architecture.

Diagram of Automated Testing Pipeline architecture

Diagram of Automated Testing Pipeline architecture

In order to create the Automated Testing Pipeline, two interns collaborated over the course of 5 weeks to produce the architecture and custom test scripts. We divided the work of constructing a serverless architecture and writing out test scripts for the output urls for OHDSI-on-AWS and REDCap environments on AWS.

The following tasks were completed to build out the Automated Testing Pipeline solution:

  • Setup AWS IAM roles for accessing AWS resources securely
  • Create CloudWatch events to trigger AWS CodePipeline
  • Setup CodePipeline and CodeBuild to run TaskCat and testing scripts
  • Configure TaskCat to deploy CloudFormation solutions in various AWS Regions
  • Write test scripts to interact with CloudFormation solutions’ deployed environments
  • Subscribe to receive emails detailing test results
  • Create a CloudFormation template for the Automated Testing Pipeline

The architecture can be extended to test any CloudFormation stack. For this particular use case, we wrote the test scripts specifically to test the urls output by the CloudFormation solutions. The Automated Testing Pipeline has the following features:

  • Deployed in a single AWS Region, with the exception of the tested CloudFormation solution
  • Has a serverless architecture operating at the AWS Region level
  • Deploys a pipeline which can deploy and test the CloudFormation solution
  • Creates CloudWatch events to activate the pipeline on a schedule or when the solution is updated
  • Creates an Amazon SNS topic for notifying subscribers when there are errors
  • Includes code for running TaskCat and scripts to test solution functionality
  • Built automatically in minutes
  • Low in cost with free tier benefits

The pipeline is triggered automatically when an event occurs. These events include a change to the CloudFormation solution template, a change to the code in the testing repository, and an alarm set off by a regular schedule. Additional events can be added in the CloudWatch console.

When the pipeline is triggered, the testing environment is set up by CodeBuild. CodeBuild uses a build specification file kept within our source repository to set up the environment and run the test scripts. We created a CodeCommit repository to host the test scripts alongside the build specification. The build specification includes commands run TaskCat — an open-source tool for testing the deployment of CloudFormation templates. TaskCat provides the ability to test the deployment of the CloudFormation solution, but we needed custom test scripts to ensure that we can interact with the deployed environment as expected. If the template is successfully deployed, CodeBuild handles running the test scripts against the CloudFormation solution environment. In our case, the environment is accessed via urls output by the CloudFormation solution.

We used a Selenium WebDriver for interacting with the web pages given by the output urls. This allowed us to programmatically navigate a headless web browser in the serverless environment and gave us the ability to use text output by JavaScript functions to understand the state of the test. You can see this interaction occurring in the code snippet below.

def log_in(driver, user, passw, link, btn_path, title):
    """Enter username and password then submit to log in

        :param driver: webdriver for Chrome page
        :param user: username as String
        :param passw: password as String
        :param link: url for page being tested as String
        :param btn_path: xpath to submit button
        :param title: expected page title upon successful sign in
        :return: success String tuple if log in completed, failure description tuple String otherwise
        # post username and password data
        driver.find_element_by_xpath("//input[ @name='username' ]").send_keys(user)
        driver.find_element_by_xpath("//input[ @name='password' ]").send_keys(passw)

        # click sign in button and wait for page update
    except NoSuchElementException:
        return 'FAILURE', 'Unable to access page elements'

        WebDriverWait(driver, 20).until(ec.url_changes(link))
        WebDriverWait(driver, 20).until(ec.title_is(title))
    except TimeoutException as e:
        print("Timeout occurred (" + e + ") while attempting to sign in to " + driver.current_url)
        if "Sign In" in driver.title or "invalid user" in driver.page_source.lower():
            return 'FAILURE', 'Incorrect username or password'
            return 'FAILURE', 'Sign in attempt timed out'

    return 'SUCCESS', 'Sign in complete'

We store the test results in JSON format for ease of parsing. TaskCat generates a dashboard which we customize to display these test results. We are able to insert our JSON results into the dashboard in order to make it easy to find errors and access log files. This dashboard is a static html file that can be hosted on an S3 bucket. In addition, messages are published to topics in SNS whenever an error occurs which provide a link to this dashboard.

Dashboard containing descriptions of tests and their results

Customized TaskCat dashboard

In true CI/CD fashion, this end-to-end design automatically performs tasks that would otherwise be performed manually. We have shown how deploying solutions, testing solutions, notifying maintainers, and providing a results dashboard are all actions handled entirely by the Automated Testing Pipeline.

Getting Started with the Automated Testing Pipeline

Prerequisite tasks to complete before deploying the pipeline:

Once the prerequisite tasks are completed, the pipeline is ready to be deployed. Detailed information about deployment, altering the source code to fit your use case, and troubleshooting issues can be found at the GitHub page for the Automated Testing Pipeline.

For those looking to jump right into deployment, click the Launch Stack button below.

Button to click to deploy the Automated Testing Pipeline via CloudFormation

Tasks to complete after deployment:

  • Subscribe to SNS topic for error messages
  • Update the code to match the parameters and CloudFormation template that were chosen
  • Skip this step if you are testing OHDSI-on-AWS. Upload the desired CloudFormation template to the created source S3 Bucket
  • Push the source code to the created CodeCommit Repository

After the code is pushed to the CodeCommit repository and the CloudFormation template has been uploaded to S3, the pipeline will run automatically. You can visit the CodePipeline console to confirm that the pipeline is running with an “in progress” status.

You may desire to alter various aspects of the Automated Testing Pipeline to better fit your use case. Listed below are some actions you can take to modify the solution to fit your needs:

  • Go to CloudWatch Events and update rules for automatically started the pipeline.
  • Scale out testing by providing custom testing scripts or altering the existing ones.
  • Test a different CloudFormation template by uploading it to the source S3 bucket created and configuring the pipeline accordingly. Custom test scripts will likely be required for this use case.

Challenges Addressed by the Automated Testing Pipeline

The Automated Testing Pipeline directly addresses the challenges we faced with maintaining our OHDSI and REDCap solutions. Additionally, the pipeline can be used whenever there is a need to test CloudFormation templates that are being used on a regular basis or are distributed to other users. Listed below is the set of specific challenges we faced maintaining CloudFormation solutions and how the pipeline addresses them.

Table describing challenges faced with their direct solution offered by Testing Pipeline

The desire to better serve our customers guided our decision to create the Automated Testing Pipeline. For example, we know that source code used to build the OHDSI-on-AWS environment changes on occasion. Some of these changes have caused the environment to stop functioning correctly. This left us with cases where our customers had to either open an issue on GitHub or reach out to AWS directly for support. Our customers depend on OHDSI-on-AWS functioning properly, so fixing issues is of high priority to our team. The ability to run tests regularly allows us to take action without depending on notice from our customers. Now, we can be the first ones to know if something goes wrong and get to fixing it sooner.

“This automation will help us better monitor the CloudFormation-based projects our customers depend on to ensure they’re always in working order.” — James Wiggins, EDU HCLS SA Manager

Cleaning Up

If you decide to quit using the Automated Testing Pipeline, follow the steps below to get rid of the resources associated with it in your AWS account.

  • Delete CloudFormation solution root Stack
  • Delete pipeline CloudFormation Stack
  • Delete ATLAS S3 Bucket if OHDSI-on-AWS was chosen

Deleting the pipeline CloudFormation stack handles removing the resources associated with its architecture. Depending on the CloudFormation template chosen for testing, additional resources associated with it may need to be removed. Visit our GitHub page for more information on removing resources.


The ability to continuously test preexisting solutions on AWS has great benefits for our team and our customers. The automated nature of this testing frees up time for us and our customers, and the dashboard makes issues more visible and easier to resolve. We believe that sharing this story can benefit anyone facing challenges maintaining CloudFormation solutions in AWS. Check out the Getting Started with the Automated Testing Pipeline section of this post to deploy the solution.

Additional Resources

More information about the key services and open-source software used in our pipeline can be found at the following documentation pages:

About the Authors

Raleigh Hansen is a former Solutions Architect Intern on the Academic Medical Centers team at AWS. She is passionate about solving problems and improving upon existing systems. She also adores spending time with her two cats.

Dan Le is a former Solutions Architect Intern on the Academic Medical Centers team at AWS. He is passionate about technology and enjoys doing art and music.

Securing Amazon EKS workloads with Atlassian Bitbucket and Snyk

Post Syndicated from James Bland original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/securing-amazon-eks-workloads-with-atlassian-bitbucket-and-snyk/

This post was contributed by James Bland, Sr. Partner Solutions Architect, AWS, Jay Yeras, Head of Cloud and Cloud Native Solution Architecture, Snyk, and Venkat Subramanian, Group Product Manager, Bitbucket


One of our goals at Atlassian is to make the software delivery and development process easier. This post explains how you can set up a software delivery pipeline using Bitbucket Pipelines and Snyk, a tool that finds and fixes vulnerabilities in open-source dependencies and container images, to deploy secured applications on Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS). By presenting important development information directly on pull requests inside the product, you can proactively diagnose potential issues, shorten test cycles, and improve code quality.

Atlassian Bitbucket Cloud is a Git-based code hosting and collaboration tool, built for professional teams. Bitbucket Pipelines is an integrated CI/CD service that allows you to automatically build, test, and deploy your code. With its best-in-class integrations with Jira, Bitbucket Pipelines allows different personas in an organization to collaborate and get visibility into the deployments. Bitbucket Pipes are small chunks of code that you can drop into your pipeline to make it easier to build powerful, automated CI/CD workflows.

In this post, we go over the following topics:

  • The importance of security as practices shift-left in DevOps
  • How embedding security into pull requests helps developer workflows
  • Deploying an application on Amazon EKS using Bitbucket Pipelines and Snyk

Shift-left on security

Security is usually an afterthought. Developers tend to focus on delivering software first and addressing security issues later when IT Security, Ops, or InfoSec teams discover them. However, research from the 2016 State of DevOps Report shows that you can achieve better outcomes by testing for security earlier in the process within a developer’s workflow. This concept is referred to as shift-left, where left indicates earlier in the process, as illustrated in the following diagram.

There are two main challenges in shifting security left to developers:

  • Developers aren’t security experts – They develop software in the most efficient way they know how, which can mean importing libraries to take care of lower-level details. And sometimes these libraries import other libraries within them, and so on. This makes it almost impossible for a developer, who is not a security expert, to keep track of security.
  • It’s time-consuming – There is no automation. Developers have to run tests to understand what’s happening and then figure out how to fix it. This slows them down and takes them away from their core job: building software.

Time spent on SDLC testing

Enabling security into a developer’s workflow

Code Insights is a new feature in Bitbucket that provides contextual information as part of the pull request interface. It surfaces information relevant to a pull request so issues related to code quality or security vulnerabilities can be viewed and acted upon during the code review process. The following screenshot shows Code Insights on the pull request sidebar.


Code insights

In the security space, we’ve partnered with Snyk, McAfee, Synopsys, and Anchore. When you use any of these integrations in your Bitbucket Pipeline, security vulnerabilities are automatically surfaced within your pull request, prompting developers to address them. By bringing the vulnerability information into the pull request interface before the actual deployment, it’s much easier for code reviewers to assess the impact of the vulnerability and provide actionable feedback.

When security issues are fixed as part of a developer’s workflow instead of post-deployment, it means fewer sev1 incidents, which saves developer time and IT resources down the line, and leads to a better user experience for your customers.


Securing your Atlassian Workflow with Snyk

To demonstrate how you can easily introduce a few steps to your workflow that improve your security posture, we take advantage of the new Snyk integration to Atlassian’s Code Insights and other Snyk integrations to Bitbucket Cloud, Amazon Elastic Container Registry (Amazon ECR, for more information see Container security with Amazon Elastic Container Registry (ECR): integrate and test), and Amazon EKS (for more information see Kubernetes workload and image scanning. We reference sample code in a publicly available Bitbucket repository. In this repository, you can find resources such as a multi-stage build Dockerfile for a sample Java web application, a sample bitbucket-pipelines.yml configured to perform Snyk scans and push container images to Amazon ECR, and a reference Kubernetes manifest to deploy your application.


You first need to have a few resources provisioned, such as an Amazon ECR repository and an Amazon EKS cluster. You can quickly create these using the AWS Command Line Interface (AWS CLI) by invoking the create-repository command and following the Getting started with eksctl guide. Next, make sure that you have enabled the new code review experience in your Bitbucket account.

To take a closer look at the bitbucket-pipelines.yml file, see the following code:

 - IMAGE_NAME="petstore"
 - docker build -t $IMAGE_NAME .
 - pipe: snyk/snyk-scan:0.4.3
     LANGUAGE: "docker"
     TARGET_FILE: "Dockerfile"
     DONT_BREAK_BUILD: "true"
 - pipe: atlassian/aws-ecr-push-image:1.1.2
     AWS_DEFAULT_REGION: "us-west-2"

In the preceding code, we invoke two Bitbucket Pipes to easily configure our pipeline and complete two critical tasks in just a few lines: scan our container image and push to our private registry. This saves time and allows for reusability across repositories while discovering innovative ways to automate our pipelines thanks to an extensive catalog of integrations.

Snyk pipe for Bitbucket Pipelines

In the following use case, we build a container image from the Dockerfile included in the Bitbucket repository and scan the image using the Snyk pipe. We also invoke the aws-ecr-push-image pipe to securely store our image in a private registry on Amazon ECR. When the pipeline runs, we see results as shown in the following screenshot.

Bitbucket pipeline

If we choose the available report, we can view the detailed results of our Snyk scan. In the following screenshot, we see detailed insights into the content of that report: three high, one medium, and five low-severity vulnerabilities were found in our container image.

container image report


Snyk scans of Bitbucket and Amazon ECR repositories

Because we use Snyk’s integration to Amazon ECR and Snyk’s Bitbucket Cloud integration to scan and monitor repositories, we can dive deeper into these results by linking our Dockerfile stored in our Bitbucket repository to the results of our last container image scan. By doing so, we can view recommendations for upgrading our base image, as in the following screenshot.


ECR scan recommendations

As a result, we can move past informational insights and onto actionable recommendations. In the preceding screenshot, our current image of jboss/wilfdly:11.0.0.Final contains 76 vulnerabilities. We also see two recommendations: a major upgrade to jboss/wildfly:18.0.1.FINAL, which brings our total vulnerabilities down to 65, and an alternative upgrade, which is less desirable.


We can investigate further by drilling down into the report to view additional context on how a potential vulnerability was introduced, and also create a Jira issue to Atlassian Jira Software Cloud. The following screenshot shows a detailed report on the Issues tab.


Jira issue

We can also explore the Dependencies tab for a list of all the direct dependencies, transitive dependencies, and the vulnerabilities those may contain. See the following screenshot.


dependency vulnerabilities

Snyk scan Amazon EKS configuration

The final step in securing our workflow involves integrating Snyk with Kubernetes and deploying to Amazon EKS and Bitbucket Pipelines. Sample Kubernetes manifest files and a bitbucket-pipeline.yml are available for you to use in the accompanying Bitbucket repository for this post. Our bitbucket-pipeline.yml contains the following step:

 - pipe: atlassian/aws-eks-kubectl-run:1.2.3
     CLUSTER_NAME: "my-kube-cluster"
     KUBECTL_COMMAND: "apply"
     RESOURCE_PATH: "java-app.yaml"

In the preceding code, we call the aws-eks-kubectl-run pipe and pass in a few repository variables we previously defined (see the following screenshot).


repository variables

For more information about generating the necessary access keys in AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) to make programmatic requests to the AWS API, see Creating an IAM User in Your AWS Account.

Now that we have provisioned the supporting infrastructure and invoked kubectl apply -f java-app.yaml to deploy our pods using our container images in Amazon ECR, we can monitor our project details and view some initial results. The following screenshot shows that our initial configuration isn’t secure.

secure config scan results

The reason for this is that we didn’t explicitly define a few parameters in our Kubernetes manifest under securityContext. For example, parameters such as readOnlyRootFilesystem, runAsNonRoot, allowPrivilegeEscalation, and capabilities either aren’t defined or are set incorrectly in our template. As a result, we see this in our findings with the FAIL flag. Hovering over these on the Snyk console provides specific insights on how to fix these, for example:

  • Run as non-root – Whether any containers in the workload have securityContext.runAsNonRoot set to false or unset
  • Read-only root file system – Whether any containers in the workload have securityContext.readOnlyFilesystem set to false or unset
  • Drop capabilities – Whether all capabilities are dropped and CAP_SYS_ADMIN isn’t added


To save you the trouble of researching this, we provide another sample template, java-app-snyk.yaml, which you can apply against your running pods. The difference in this template is that we have included the following lines to the manifest, which address the three failed findings in our report:

 allowPrivilegeEscalation: false
 readOnlyRootFilesystem: true
 runAsNonRoot: true
     - all

After a subsequent scan, we can validate our changes propagated successfully and our Kubernetes configuration is secure (see the following screenshot).

secure config scan passing results


This post demonstrated how to secure your entire flow proactively with Atlassian Bitbucket Cloud and Snyk. Seamless integrations to Bitbucket Cloud provide you with actionable insights at each step of your development process.

Get started for free with Bitbucket and Snyk and learn more about the Bitbucket-Snyk integration.


“The content and opinions in this post are those of the third-party author and AWS is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this post.”


How to build a CI/CD pipeline for container vulnerability scanning with Trivy and AWS Security Hub

Post Syndicated from Amrish Thakkar original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/security/how-to-build-ci-cd-pipeline-container-vulnerability-scanning-trivy-and-aws-security-hub/

In this post, I’ll show you how to build a continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipeline using AWS Developer Tools, as well as Aqua Security‘s open source container vulnerability scanner, Trivy. You’ll build two Docker images, one with vulnerabilities and one without, to learn the capabilities of Trivy and how to send all vulnerability information to AWS Security Hub.

If you’re building modern applications, you might be using containers, or have experimented with them. A container is a standard way to package your application’s code, configurations, and dependencies into a single object. In contrast to virtual machines (VMs), containers virtualize the operating system rather than the server. Thus, the images are orders of magnitude smaller, and they start up much more quickly.

Like VMs, containers need to be scanned for vulnerabilities and patched as appropriate. For VMs running on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), you can use Amazon Inspector, a managed vulnerability assessment service, and then patch your EC2 instances as needed. For containers, vulnerability management is a little different. Instead of patching, you destroy and redeploy the container.

Many container deployments use Docker. Docker uses Dockerfiles to define the commands you use to build the Docker image that forms the basis of your container. Instead of patching in place, you rewrite your Dockerfile to point to more up-to-date base images, dependencies, or both and to rebuild the Docker image. Trivy lets you know which dependencies in the Docker image are vulnerable, and which version of those dependencies are no longer vulnerable, allowing you to quickly understand what to patch to get back to a secure state.

Solution architecture


Figure 1: Solution architecture

Figure 1: Solution architecture

Here’s how the solution works, as shown in Figure 1:

  1. Developers push Dockerfiles and other code to AWS CodeCommit.
  2. AWS CodePipeline automatically starts an AWS CodeBuild build that uses a build specification file to install Trivy, build a Docker image, and scan it during runtime.
  3. AWS CodeBuild pushes the build logs in near real-time to an Amazon CloudWatch Logs group.
  4. Trivy scans for all vulnerabilities and sends them to AWS Security Hub, regardless of severity.
  5. If no critical vulnerabilities are found, the Docker images are deemed to have passed the scan and are pushed to Amazon Elastic Container Registry (ECR), so that they can be deployed.

Note: CodePipeline supports different sources, such as Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) or GitHub. If you’re comfortable with those services, feel free to substitute them for this walkthrough of the solution.

To quickly deploy the solution, you’ll use an AWS CloudFormation template to deploy all needed services.


  1. You must have Security Hub enabled in the AWS Region where you deploy this solution. In the AWS Management Console, go to AWS Security Hub, and select Enable Security Hub.
  2. You must have Aqua Security integration enabled in Security Hub in the Region where you deploy this solution. To do so, go to the AWS Security Hub console and, on the left, select Integrations, search for Aqua Security, and then select Accept Findings.

Setting up

For this stage, you’ll deploy the CloudFormation template and do preliminary setup of the CodeCommit repository.

  1. Download the CloudFormation template from GitHub and create a CloudFormation stack. For more information on how to create a CloudFormation stack, see Getting Started with AWS CloudFormation.
  2. After the CloudFormation stack completes, go to the CloudFormation console and select the Resources tab to see the resources created, as shown in Figure 2.


Figure 2: CloudFormation output

Figure 2: CloudFormation output

Setting up the CodeCommit repository

CodeCommit repositories need at least one file to initialize their master branch. Without a file, you can’t use a CodeCommit repository as a source for CodePipeline. To create a sample file, do the following.

  1. Go to the CodeCommit console and, on the left, select Repositories, and then select your CodeCommit repository.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page, select the Add File dropdown, and then select Create file.
  3. In the Create a file screen, enter readme into the text body, name the file readme.md, enter your name as Author name and your Email address, and then select Commit changes, as shown in Figure 3.

    Figure 3: Creating a file in CodeCommit

    Figure 3: Creating a file in CodeCommit

Simulate a vulnerable image build

For this stage, you’ll create the necessary files and add them to your CodeCommit repository to start an automated container vulnerability scan.

    1. Download the buildspec.yml file from the GitHub repository.

      Note: In the buildspec.yml code, the values prepended with $ will be populated by the CodeBuild environmental variables you created earlier. Also, the command trivy -f json -o results.json –exit-code 1 will fail your build by forcing Trivy to return an exit code 1 upon finding a critical vulnerability. You can add additional severity levels here to force Trivy to fail your builds and ensure vulnerabilities of lower severity are not published to Amazon ECR.

    2. Download the python code file sechub_parser.py from the GitHub repository. This script parses vulnerability details from the JSON file that Trivy generates, maps the information to the AWS Security Finding Format (ASFF), and then imports it to Security Hub.
    3. Next, download the Dockerfile from the GitHub repository. The code clones a GitHub repository maintained by the Trivy team that has purposely vulnerable packages that generate critical vulnerabilities.
    4. Go back to your CodeCommit repository, select the Add file dropdown menu, and then select Upload file.
    5. In the Upload file screen, select Choose file, select the build specification you just created (buildspec.yml), complete the Commit changes to master section by adding the Author name and Email address, and select Commit changes, as shown in Figure 4.


Figure 4: Uploading a file to CodeCommit

Figure 4: Uploading a file to CodeCommit


  • To upload your Dockerfile and sechub_parser.py script to CodeCommit, repeat steps 4 and 5 for each of these files.
  • Your pipeline will automatically start in response to every new commit to your repository. To check the status, go back to the pipeline status view of your CodePipeline pipeline.
  • When CodeBuild starts, select Details in the Build stage of the CodePipeline, under BuildAction, to go to the Build section on the CodeBuild console. To see a stream of logs as your build progresses, select Tail logs, as shown in Figure 5.

    Figure 5: CodeBuild Tailed Logs

    Figure 5: CodeBuild Tailed Logs

  • After Trivy has finished scanning your image, CodeBuild will fail due to the critical vulnerabilities found, as shown in Figure 6.

    Note: The command specified in the post-build stage will run even if the CodeBuild build fails. This is by design and allows the sechub_parser.py script to run and send findings to Security Hub.


    Figure 6: CodeBuild logs failure

    Figure 6: CodeBuild logs failure


You’ll now go to Security Hub to further analyze the findings and create saved searches for future use.

Analyze container vulnerabilities in Security Hub

For this stage, you’ll analyze your container vulnerabilities in Security Hub and use the findings view to locate information within the ASFF.

  1. Go to the Security Hub console and select Integrations in the left-hand navigation pane.
  2. Scroll down to the Aqua Security integration card and select See findings, as shown in Figure 7. This filters to only Aqua Security product findings in the Findings view.

    Figure 7: Aqua Security integration card

    Figure 7: Aqua Security integration card

  3. You should now see critical vulnerabilities from your previous scan in the Findings view, as shown in Figure 8. To see more details of a finding, select the Title of any of the vulnerabilities, and you will see the details in the right side of the Findings view.
    Figure 8: Security Hub Findings pane

    Figure 8: Security Hub Findings pane

    Note: Within the Findings view, you can apply quick filters by checking the box next to certain fields, although you won’t do that for the solution in this post.

  4. To open a new tab to a website about the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) for the finding, select the hyperlink within the Remediation section, as shown in Figure 9.
    Figure 9: Remediation information

    Figure 9: Remediation information

    Note: The fields shown in Figure 9 are dynamically populated by Trivy in its native output, and the CVE website can differ greatly from vulnerability to vulnerability.

  5. To see the JSON of the full ASFF, at the top right of the Findings view, select the hyperlink for Finding ID.
  6. To find information mapped from Trivy, such as the CVE title and what the patched version of the vulnerable package is, scroll down to the Other section, as shown in Figure 10.

    Figure 10: ASFF, other

    Figure 10: ASFF, other

This was a brief demonstration of exploring findings with Security Hub. You can use custom actions to define response and remediation actions, such as sending these findings to a ticketing system or aggregating them in a security information event management (SIEM) tool.

Push a non-vulnerable Dockerfile

Now that you’ve seen Trivy perform correctly with a vulnerable image, you’ll fix the vulnerabilities. For this stage, you’ll modify Dockerfile to remove any vulnerable dependencies.

  1. Open a text editor, paste in the code shown below, and save it as Dockerfile. You can overwrite your previous example if desired.
    FROM alpine:3.7
    RUN apk add --no-cache mysql-client
    ENTRYPOINT ["mysql"]

  2. Upload the new Dockerfile to CodeCommit, as shown earlier in this post.

Clean up

To avoid incurring additional charges from running these services, disable Security Hub and delete the CloudFormation stack after you’ve finished evaluating this solution. This will delete all resources created during this post. Deleting the CloudFormation stack will not remove the findings in Security Hub. If you don’t disable Security Hub, you can archive those findings and wait 90 days for them to be fully removed from your Security Hub instance.


In this post, you learned how to create a CI/CD Pipeline with CodeCommit, CodeBuild, and CodePipeline for building and scanning Docker images for critical vulnerabilities. You also used Security Hub to aggregate scan findings and take action on your container vulnerabilities.

You now have the skills to create similar CI/CD pipelines with AWS Developer Tools and to perform vulnerability scans as part of your container build process. Using these reports, you can efficiently identify CVEs and work with your developers to use up-to-date libraries and binaries for Docker images. To further build upon this solution, you can change the Trivy commands in your build specification to fail the builds on different severity levels of found vulnerabilities. As a final suggestion, you can use ECR as a source for a downstream CI/CD pipeline responsible for deploying your newly-scanned images to Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS).

If you have feedback about this post, submit comments in the Comments section below. If you have questions about this post, start a new thread on the AWS Security Hub forum or contact AWS Support.

Want more AWS Security how-to content, news, and feature announcements? Follow us on Twitter.


Amrish Thakkar

Amrish is a Senior Solutions Architect at AWS. He holds the AWS Certified Solutions Architect Professional and AWS Certified DevOps Engineer Professional certifications. Amrish is passionate about DevOps, Microservices, Containerization, and Application Security, and devotes personal time into research and advocacy on these topics. Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with family and watching LOTR trilogy frequently.

Deploying a ASP.NET Core web application to Amazon ECS using an Azure DevOps pipeline

Post Syndicated from John Formento original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/deploying-a-asp-net-core-web-application-to-amazon-ecs-using-an-azure-devops-pipeline/

For .NET developers, leveraging Team Foundation Server (TFS) has been the cornerstone for CI/CD over the years. As more and more .NET developers start to deploy onto AWS, they have been asking questions about using the same tools to deploy to the AWS cloud. By configuring a pipeline in Azure DevOps to deploy to the AWS cloud, you can easily use familiar Microsoft development tools to build great applications.

Solution overview

This blog post demonstrates how to create a simple Azure DevOps project, repository, and pipeline to deploy an ASP.NET Core web application to Amazon ECS using Azure DevOps. The following screenshot shows a high-level architecture diagram of the pipeline:


Solution Architecture Diagram

In this example, you perform the following steps:

  1. Create an Azure DevOps Project, clone project repo, and push ASP.NET Core web application.
  2. Create a pipeline in Azure DevOps
  3. Build an Amazon ECS Cluster, Task and Service.
  4. Kick-off deployment of the ASP.Net Core web application using the newly create Azure DevOps pipeline.



Ensure you have the following prerequisites set up:

  • An Amazon ECR repository
  • An IAM user with permissions for Amazon ECR and Amazon ECS (the user will need an access key and secret access key)


Create an Azure DevOps Project, clone project repo, and push ASP.NET Core web application

Follow these steps to deploy a .NET Core app onto your Amazon ECS cluster using the Azure DevOps (ADO) repository and pipeline:


  1. Login to dev.azure.com and navigate to the marketplace.
  2. Go to Visual Studio, search for “AWS”, and add the AWS Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services.
  3. Create a project in ADO: Provide a project name and choose Create.
  4. On the Project Summary page, choose Project Settings.
  5. In the Project Settings pane, navigate to the Service Connections page.
  6. Choose Create service connection, select AWS, and choose Next.
  7. Input an Access Key ID and Secret Access Key. (You’ll need an IAM user with permissions for Amazon ECR and Amazon ECS in order to deploy via the Azure DevOps pipeline.) Choose Save.
  8. Choose Repos in the left pane, then Clone in Visual Studio under Clone to your computer.
  9. Create a ASP.NET Core web application in Visual Studio, set the location to locally cloned repository, and check Enable Docker support.
  10. Once you’ve created the new project, perform an initial commit and push to the repository in Azure DevOps.


Creating a pipeline in Azure DevOps

Now that you have synced the repository, create a pipeline in Azure DevOps.

  1. Go to the pipeline page within Azure DevOps and choose Create Pipeline.
  2. Choose Use the classic editor.Pipeline configuration with repository
  3. Select Azure Repos Git for the location of your code and select the repository you created earlier.
  4. On the Choose a Template page, select Docker Container and choose Apply.
  5. Remove the Push an image step.
  6. Add an Amazon ECR Push task by choosing the + symbol next to Agent job 1. You can search for “AWS” in the Add tasks pane to filter for all AWS tasks.


Now, configure each task:

  1. Choose the Build an image task and ensure that the action is set to Build an image. Additionally, you can modify the Image Name to your standards.Pipeline configuration page Azure DevOps
  2. Choose the Push Image task and provide the following
    • Enter a name under Display Name.
    • Select the AWS Credentials that you created in Service Connections.
    • Select the AWS Region.
    • Provide the source image name, which you can find in the setting for the Build an image task.
    • Enter the name of the repository in Amazon ECR to which the image is pushedPipeline configuration page Azure DevOps
  3. Choose Save and queue.

Build Amazon ECS Cluster, Task, and Service

The goal here is to test up to building the Docker image and ensure it’s pushed to Amazon ECR. Once the Docker image is in Amazon ECR, you can create the Amazon ECS cluster, task definition, and service leveraging the newly created Docker image.

  1. Create an Amazon ECS cluster.
  2. Create an Amazon ECS task definition. When you create the task definition and configure the container, use the Amazon ECR URI for the Docker image that was just pushed to Amazon ECR.
  3. Create an Amazon ECS service.

Go back and edit the pipeline:

  1. Add the last step by choosing the + symbol next to Agent job 1.
  2. Search for “AWS CLI” in the search bar and add the task.
  3. Choose AWS CLI and configure the task.
  4. Enter a name under Display Name, such as Update ECS Service.
  5. Select the AWS Credentials that you created in Service Connections.
  6. Select the AWS Region.
  7. Input the following command, which updates the Amazon ECS service after a new image is pushed to Amazon ECR. Replace <clustername> and <servicename> with your Amazon ECS cluster and service names.
    • Command:ecs
    • Subcommand:update-service
    • Options and parameters: --cluster <clustername> --service <servicename> --force-new-deployment
  8. Now choose the Triggers tab and select Enable continuous integration with the repository you created.
  9. Choose Save and queue.


At this point, your build pipeline kicks off and builds a Docker image from the source code in the repository you created, pushes the image to Amazon ECR, and updates the Amazon ECS service with the new image.

You can verify by viewing the build. Choose Pipelines in Azure DevOps, selecting the entry for the latest run, and then the icon under the status column. Once it successfully completes, you can log in to the AWS console and view the updated image in Amazon ECR and the updated service in Amazon ECS.Pipeline status page Azure DevOps

Every time you commit and push your code through Visual Studio, this pipeline kicks off and builds and deploys your application to Amazon ECS.


At the end of this example, once you’ve completed all steps and are finished testing, follow these steps to disable or delete resources to avoid incurring costs:

  1. Go to the Amazon ECS console within the AWS Console.
  2. Navigate to the cluster you created, then choose the Tasks tab.
  3. Choose Stop all to turn off the tasks.


This blog post reviewed how to create a CI/CD pipeline in Azure DevOps to deploy a Docker Image to Amazon ECR and container to Amazon ECS. It provided detailed steps on how to set up a basic CI/CD pipeline, leveraging tools with which .NET developers are familiar and the steps needed to integrate with Amazon ECR and Amazon ECS.

I hope this post was informative and has helped you learn the basics of how to integrate Amazon ECR and Amazon ECS with Azure DevOps to create a robust CI/CD pipeline.

About the Authors

John Formento



John Formento is a Solution Architect at Amazon Web Services. He helps large enterprises achieve their goals by architecting secure and scalable solutions on the AWS Cloud.

Cost Optimize your Jenkins CI/CD pipelines using EC2 Spot Instances

Post Syndicated from Ben Peven original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/compute/cost-optimize-your-jenkins-ci-cd-pipelines-using-ec2-spot-instances/

Author: Rajesh Kesaraju, Sr. Specialist Solution Architect, EC2 Spot Instances

In this blog post, I go over using Amazon EC2 Spot Instances on continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) workloads, via the popular open-source automation server Jenkins. I also break down the steps required to adopt Spot Instances into your CI/CD pipelines for cost optimization purposes. In this blog, I explain how to configure your Jenkins environment to achieve significant cost savings by using Spot Instances with the EC2 Fleet Jenkins plugin.

Overview of EC2 Spot, CI/CD, and Jenkins

AWS offers multiple purchasing models for its EC2 instances. This particular blog post focuses on Amazon EC2 Spot Instances, which lets you take advantage of unused EC2 capacity in the AWS Cloud at a steep discount.

You can use Spot Instances for various stateless, fault-tolerant, or flexible applications such as big data, containerized workloads, CI/CD, web servers, high performance computing (HPC), and other test and development workloads.

CI/CD pipelines are familiar to many readers via a popular piece of open-source software called Jenkins. Jenkins’ automation of development, testing and deployment scenarios, courtesy of more than 2000 plugins, plays a key role in many organizations’ software development and delivery ecosystems. Jenkins accelerates software development through multiple stages, including building and documenting, packaging and analytics, staging and deploying, etc.

Lyft began using EC2 Spot Instances for their Jenkins CI pipelines, and discovered they could save up to 90 percent compared to their previous non-Spot EC2 implementations. They moved their entire CI/CD pipeline to EC2 Spot Instances by modifying just four lines of their deployment code.

In this blog, I walk through how to configure your Jenkins environment to achieve significant cost savings by using Spot Instances with the EC2 Fleet Jenkins plugin.

Solution Overview

For the following tutorial, you need both an AWS account and Jenkins downloaded and installed on your system.

This blog post uses Spot Instances. If your Jenkins server runs on On-Demand Instances, you can easily switch to Spot Instances with EC2-Fleet Plugin. Now, let’s look at how this plugin can be configured to make your Jenkins elastically scale up/down depending on pending jobs, and save significantly on compute costs.


Create a new EC2 key pair

To access the SSH interfaces of your Jenkins instances, you must have an EC2 key pair. Please follow below steps to create a new EC2 key pair.

1. Log in to your AWS Account;
2. Switch to your preferred Region;
3. Provision a new EC2 key pair:

    1. Go to the EC2 console and click on the key pairs option from the left frame.
    2. Click on the Create key pair button;
    3. Provide key pair name and click on the Create button;
    4. Your web browser should download a .pem file – keep this file as it will be required to access the EC2 instances that you create in this workshop. If you’re using a Windows system, convert the .pem file to a PuTTY .ppk file. If you’re not sure how to do this, instructions are available here.

Create an AWS IAM User for EC2-Fleet Plugin

To control Spot Instances from the EC2-Fleet plugin, you first create an IAM user (with programmatic access) in your AWS account. Then configure an IAM policy for AWS permissions. Use the following code to achieve this step.

    "Version": "2012-10-17",
    "Statement": [
            "Action": [
            "Resource": "*",
            "Effect": "Allow"

These permissions allow you to configure the plugin, allow programmatic access to AWS resources to create and terminate Spot Instances, and control Auto Scaling Group (ASG) parameters.

In the IAM dashboard, click User and select the Jenkins User you created. Next, click Create access key, and save the Access key ID and Secret access key for use in next steps.

IAM > Users > Jenkins User > Security Credentials > Create Access Key

Create Access Key for Jenkins user fig. 1

Create Access Key for Jenkins user fig. 2

Create an Auto Scaling Group

Auto Scaling groups help you configure your Jenkins EC2-Fleet plugin to control Jenkins build agents and scale up or down depending on the job queue. It also replaces instances that were terminated due to demand spike in specific Spot Instance pools.

Documentation on how to create Auto Scaling Group is here.

Set your ASG to diversify your Spot Fleet across multiple Spot pools to increase your chances of getting a Spot Instance for your Jenkins jobs, and set an allocation strategy. I used “capacity-optimized” as the allocation strategy in the following example.

The “capacity-optimized” option allocates Spot Instances from the deepest pools of available spare capacity, which lowers the chance of interruptions. Alternatively, you may choose the “lowest-price” allocation strategy if you have builds that finish quicker, and the cost of re-processing of failed jobs due to interruption isn’t that significant. Learn more about allocation strategies in this blog.

The Jenkins EC2-Fleet plugin overrides and controls ASG’s capacity configuration. So, start with one instance for now. I also cover a scenario that starts with 0 instances to further minimize costs.

A sample ASG configuration looks like the following image. Notice there are 6 instance types across 3 Availability Zones, this means EC2 Spot capacity is provided from 18 (6×3) Spot Instance pools! This configuration increases the likelihood of getting Spot Instances from the deepest Spot pools at a steep discount.

An example ASG configuration Image

Install and Configure an EC2-Fleet plugin in Jenkins

Install the latest version of EC2-Fleet plugin in Jenkins. This plugin launches Spot Instances using ASG or EC2 Spot Fleet where you can run your build jobs. In this blog, I launch EC2 Spot Instances using ASG.

After installing you see it in the plugin manager. This blog uses current version 2.0.0.

Go to Manage Jenkins > Plugin Manager then install EC2 Fleet Jenkins Plugin

Jenkins Server EC2-Fleet Plugin

In the first part of this solution, you created an AWS user. Now, configure this user in your Jenkins Amazon EC2 Fleet configuration section.

Navigate to Manage Jenkins -> Configure Clouds -> Add a New Cloud -> Amazon EC2 Fleet.

Configure Amazon EC2 Fleet plugin as Cloud Setting

Create a name for your EC2-Fleet plugin configuration. I use Amazon EC2 Spot Fleet. Then configure your AWS Credentials.

Configure ASG in Jenkins EC2-fleet plugin

1. Change the Kind to AWS Credentials;
2. Change the Scope to System (Jenkins and nodes only) – you don’t want your builds to have access to these credentials!
3. At the ID (optional) field. Enter this if need to access this using scripts
4. Provide Access key ID and Secret access key fields, saved when you created Jenkins user before, then click Add.
5. Once you are done adding credentials, select the corresponding AWS Region to your ASG.
6. EC2 Fleet dropdown automatically populates the ASG that you created earlier.
7. Once the ASG is selected, check your configuration. The following image shows this test:

Testing Jenkins EC2 Fleet Plugin configuration

Configure Launcher

1. Change the Kind to SSH Username with private key;
2. Change the Scope to System (Jenkins and nodes only) – you also don’t want your builds to have access to these credentials;
3. Enter ec2-user as the Username.
4. Select the Enter directly button for the Private Key. Open the .pem file that you downloaded previously, and copy the contents of the file to the Key field including the BEGIN RSA PRIVATE KEY and END RSA PRIVATE KEY fields.
5. Verify your launcher looks like as below, and click on the Add button

Configuring Launcher and providing Jenkins credentials

Once your credentials are added, you move on to complete rest of the Launcher configuration.

1. Select the ec2-user option from the Credentials drop-down.
2. Select the “Non verifying Verification Strategy” option from the Host Key Verification Strategy drop-down. Select this option because Spot Instances have a random SSH host fingerprint.

Configuring Jenkins launch agents by ec2-user via SSH

3. Mark the Connect Private check box to ensure that your Jenkins Master always communicates with the Agents via their internal VPC IP addresses (in real-world scenarios, your build      agents would likely not be publicly addressable).
4. Change the Label field to spot-agents.
5. Set the Max Idle Minutes Before Scaledown. In this example, I used AWS launched per-second billing in 2017, so there’s no need to keep a build agent running for too much longer than it’s required.
6. Change the Maximum Cluster Size depending on your need. For example, I set the Maximum Cluster Size to 2.

After saving these configurations, your screen should look similar to the following image.

Configuring Launcher with cluster scaling parameters

Configure Number of Executors

Determine the number of executors based on your build requirements, such as how many builds on average can be executed concurrently on each machine based on machine’s vCPU and RAM allocations.

If you cram many executors into one machine, each build average execution may increase, which slows down the pipeline.

Once you determine optimum executors per machine, any additional pending jobs get executed on scaled out machines by auto scaling.

Some Important aspects about Cluster size settings

Jenkins EC2-Fleet agent settings override ASG settings. So, “Minimum Cluster Size” and “Maximum Cluster Size” values mentioned here override ASG’s settings dynamically.

If you set minimum cluster size as 0, then when there are no pending jobs there won’t be any idle servers after Max Idle Minutes before shut down minutes are met. In this scenario, when there is a new build request, it takes roughly two to five minutes for new EC2 Spot Instances to start processing after boot strapping and installing necessary Jenkins agents.

If your jobs are time-insensitive, this strategy maximizes savings, as you eliminate spending money on idle instances.

Alternatively, you may set “Minimum Cluster Size” as 1 or 2 so you have running instances all the time if you have a need to process several builds/tests a day and/or builds taking very long time and occur on a daily basis.

In this blog the idea is to cost optimize CI/CD pipelines, to avoid idle instances.

Configure Jenkins build Jobs to utilize EC2 Spot Instances

Finally, configure your build job to check “Restrict where this project can be run” and enter “spot-agents” as the label expression. When builds are initiated, they are executed against Spot Instance.

Configuring Jenkins builds to utilize EC2 Spot Instances with Label Expression

At this point, you are ready to run your builds on Spot Instances and save significantly!

Configuring Jenkins server to run on EC2 Spot Instances

Now you started saving on your build agents, is it possible to save on Jenkins server also using Spot Instances? Yes! Let’s see how this can be done with a few simple techniques.

By running your Jenkins server on Spot, you optimize the compute costs associated with the whole Jenkins CI/CD environment. With Spot Instance diversification strategy and making use of ASG features, you can move your Jenkins server also to EC2 Spot Instance.

There is one slight wrinkle in the above process. Jenkins requires persistent data on a local file system, whereas a Spot Instance cannot be guaranteed to be persistent due to the chance of interruptions. Therefore, to switch your Jenkins server over to Spot, you must first move your Jenkins data to an Amazon Elastic File System (EFS) volume — which your Spot Instance can then access.

Amazon Elastic File System provides a simple, scalable, fully managed elastic NFS file system for use with AWS Cloud services and on-premises resources. More here

Here are the steps to mount EFS volume to an existing Jenkins server, and move its content to Amazon EFS managed store. Then, you can point the Jenkins server to use EFS mount point for its operations and maintain server state. This way when a Spot Instance gets interrupted, server state is not lost, and another Spot Instance can pick up from where the previous server left off.

Here are the steps move data from JENKINS_HOME to Amazon EFS

1. Mount EFS volume:

sudo mount -t nfs -o nfsvers=4.1,rsize=1048576,wsize=1048576,hard,timeo=600,retrans=2 \
$(curl -s\
.%FILE-SYSTEM-ID%.efs.<AWS Region>.amazonaws.com:/ (http://efs.<AWS Region>.amazonaws.com/) /mnt

2. Copy existing JENKINS_HOME (/var/lib/Jenkins) content to EFS after shutting down Jenkins server
3. >> sudo chown jenkins:jenkins /mnt
>> sudo cp -rpv /var/lib/jenkins/* /mnt

Once you’ve moved the contents of JENKINS_HOME to Amazon EFS, now it’s safe to run Jenkins Server to EC2 Spot Instance.

Spot Instances can be interrupted by AWS, so you may lose your Jenkins server access momentarily when an interruption occurs.

Since you already externalized the state to Amazon EFS, you don’t lose any previous state. So, when the instance running your Jenkins server gets interrupted, in a matter of a few minutes, ASG replenishes new EC2 Spot Instance to run your Jenkins Server.

To get this into service automatically complete the following steps:

1. Ensure ASG launch instances into target group that is pointed by Application Load Balancer (ALB)
2. If Spot Instance is terminated with the two minute warning, ASG launches a replacement instance. The new Spot Instance will be bootstrapped just as your original Spot Instance was and then mount to EFS as configured in user data of “Launch Template”
3. Configure ASG from Launch Template (Sample UserData section as below)

# Install all pending updates to the system
yum -y update
# Configure YUM to be able to access official Jenkins RPM packages
wget -O /etc/yum.repos.d/jenkins.repo https://pkg.jenkins.io/redhat-stable/jenkins.repo
# Import the Jenkins repository public key
rpm --import https://pkg.jenkins.io/redhat-stable/jenkins.io.key
# Configure YUM to be able to access contributed Maven RPM packages
wget http://repos.fedorapeople.org/repos/dchen/apache-maven/epel-apache-maven.repo -O /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-apache-maven.repo
# Update the release version in the Maven repository configuration for this mainline release of Amazon Linux
sed -i s/\$releasever/6/g /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-apache-maven.repo
# Install the Java 8 SDK, Git, Jenkins and Maven
yum -y install java-1.8.0-openjdk java-1.8.0-openjdk-devel git jenkins apache-maven
# Set the default version of java to run out of the Java 8 SDK path (required by Jenkins)
update-alternatives --set java /usr/lib/jvm/jre-1.8.0-openjdk.x86_64/bin/java
update-alternatives --set javac /usr/lib/jvm/java-1.8.0-openjdk.x86_64/bin/javac
# Mount the Jenkins EFS volume at JENKINS_HOME
mount -t nfs -o nfsvers=4.1,rsize=1048576,wsize=1048576,hard,timeo=600,retrans=2 $(curl -s${EFSJenkinsHomeVolume}.efs.${AWSRegion}.amazonaws.com:/ /var/lib/jenkins
# Start the Jenkins service
service jenkins start

That’s it, you are now ready to run your Jenkins server on EC2 Spot Instances and save up to 90% compared to On-Demand price.


You are now ready to leverage the power and flexibility of EC2 Spot Instances.

With a few modifications to your deployment you can significantly reduce your compute costs or accelerate throughput by accessing 10x compute for the same cost.

For users getting started on their Amazon EC2 Spot Instances, we are here to help. Please also share any questions in the comments section below.

Here is where to begin in the Amazon EC2 Spot Instance console — and start transforming your Jenkins workloads today.

About the author

Rajesh Kesaraju

Rajesh Kesaraju is a Sr. Specialist SA for EC2 Spot with Amazon AWS. He helps customers to cost optimize their workloads by utilizing EC2 Spot instances in various types of workloads such as Big Data, Containers, HPC, CI/CD, and Sateless Applications Etc.

Automating your API testing with AWS CodeBuild, AWS CodePipeline, and Postman

Post Syndicated from Juan Lamadrid original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/automating-your-api-testing-with-aws-codebuild-aws-codepipeline-and-postman/

Today, enterprises of all shapes and sizes are engaged in some form of digital transformation. Many recognize that successful digital transformation requires continuous evolution powered by a robust API strategy. APIs enable the creation of new products, improvement of the customer experience, transformation of business processes, and ultimately, the agility needed to create sustainable business value. Hence, it stands to reason that adopting DevOps best practices such as Continuous Integration into your API development lifecycle helps improve the quality of your APIs and accelerate your API strategy.

In this post, we highlight how to automate API testing using serverless technologies, including AWS CodePipeline and AWS CodeBuild, along with Postman. AWS CodePipeline is a fully managed continuous delivery service that helps you automate your release pipelines for fast and reliable application and infrastructure updates. CodeBuild is a fully managed continuous integration service that compiles source code, runs tests, and produces software packages ready to deploy without the need to provision, manage, and scale your own build servers.

We take advantage of a new feature in CodeBuild called Reports that allows us to view the reports generated by functional or integration tests. We keep an eye on valuable metrics such as Pass Rate %, Test Run Duration, and the number of Passed versus Failed/Error test cases.

Postman is an industry-recognized tool used for API development that makes it easy to both develop and test your APIs. Postman also includes command-line integration with its command-line Collection Runner, Newman. Newman can easily be integrated with your continuous integration servers and build systems. Our CodePipeline pipeline uses CodeBuild to invoke the Newman command line interface and execute tests created with Postman. We cover the steps in detail below.

Solution Overview

In this post, we demonstrate how to automate the deployment and testing of the Pet Store API that is available as a sample API with API Gateway. This is a simple API that integrates via HTTP proxy to a demo Pet Store API. The API contains endpoints to list pets, get a pet by specific id, and add a pet.

The following diagram depicts the architecture of this simple Pet Store demo API.

Simple PetStore API Architecture



The following diagram depicts the AWS CodePipeline pipeline architecture we use to test the PetStore API.


The AWS CodePipline pipeline architecture we use to test our API.

After execution of this pipeline, you have a fully operational API that has been tested for specific functional requirements. These test cases and their results are visible in the Reports section of the CodeBuild console.

Building the PetStore API Pipeline

To get started, follow these steps:

Step 1. Fork the Github repository

Log into your GitHub account and fork the following repository: https://github.com/aws-samples/aws-codepipeline-codebuild-with-postman

Step 2. Clone the forked repository

Clone the forked repository into your local development environment.
git clone https://github.com/<YOUR_GITHUB_USERNAME>/aws-codepipeline-codebuild-with-postman

Step 3. Create an Amazon S3 bucket

This bucket contains resources related to this project. We refer to this bucket as the project’s root bucket.

Step 4. Edit the buildspec file

The buildspec file petstore-api-buildspec.yml contains the instructions to package the resources defined in your SAM template, petstore-api.yaml. This build spec is executed by CodeBuild within the build stage (BuildPetStoreAPI) of the pipeline.

1. Replace the following text REPLACE_ME_WITH_UNIQUE_BUCKET_NAME in the petstore-api-buildspec.yml with the bucket name created above in step 3.

2. Commit this change to your repository.

Step 5. Store Postman collection and environment files in S3

1. Navigate to the directory 02postman

For this project we included a Postman collection file, PetStoreAPI.postman_collection.json, that validates the PetStore API’s functionality. You can import the collection and environment file into Postman using the instructions here to see the tests associated with each API endpoint.

The following screenshot is an example specific to testing a GET request to the /pets endpoint(1). We make sure the GET request returns a JSON array(2) along with the inclusion of a Content-Type header (3) and a response time of less than 200ms (4). In the Test results tab (5), you can see we passed these tests when calling the API.

Postman screenshot showing tests for specific endpoint.

2. Save the Postman collection file in S3 using the AWS CLI

aws s3 cp PetStoreAPI.postman_collection.json \

3. Save the Postman environment file to S3 using the AWS CLI

aws s3 cp PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json \

Step 6. Create the PetStore API pipeline

We now create the AWS CodePipeline PetStoreAPI pipeline that will both deploy and test our API. We use AWS CloudFormation template (petstore-api-pipeline.yaml) to define the pipeline and required stages, as noted in our pipeline architecture diagram.

Navigate back to the project’s root directory

To launch this template, you need to fill in a few parameters:
BucketRoot: unique bucket folder you created above
GitHubBranch: master
GitHubRepositoryName: aws-codepipeline-codebuild-with-postman
GitHubToken: your github personal access token
You can create your github token here (for select scopes: check repo and admin:repohook)
GitHubUser = your github username

2. Use the AWS CLI to deploy the AWS CloudFormation template as follows

aws cloudformation create-stack --stack-name petstore-api-pipeline \
--template-body file://./petstore-api-pipeline.yaml \
--parameters \
ParameterKey=BucketRoot,ParameterValue=<REPLACE_ME_WITH_UNIQUE_BUCKET_NAME> \
ParameterKey=GitHubBranch,ParameterValue=<REPLACE_ME_GITHUB_BRANCH> \
ParameterKey=GitHubRepositoryName,ParameterValue=<REPLACE_ME_GITHUB_REPO> \
ParameterKey=GitHubToken,ParameterValue=<REPLACE_ME_GITHUB_TOKEN> \
ParameterKey=GitHubUser,ParameterValue=<REPLACE_ME_GITHUB_USERNAME> \

This command creates a CodePipeline pipeline and required stages to deploy and test our API using CodeBuild and Newman. Open the CodePipeline console to watch your pipeline execute and monitor the different stages, as shown in the following screenshot.

PetStore API AWS CodePipeline
The last stage of the pipeline uses CodeBuild and Newman to execute the tests created with Postman. You should now have a fully functional API visible in the Amazon API Gateway console.

Review AWS CodeBuild configuration

For this pipeline, we use CodeBuild to both deploy our API in the build stage and to test our API in the test stage of the pipeline. For the deploy stage, CodeBuild uses AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM) to build and deploy our API. We focus on the test stage and how we use CodeBuild to run functional tests against our API.

Take a look at the buildspec file (postman-newman-buildspec.yml)that CodeBuild uses to execute the test. Recall that our goal for this stage is to execute functional tests that we created earlier using Postman and to visualize these test results in CodeBuild Reports:

version: 0.2

    key: "S3_BUCKET"

      nodejs: 10
      - npm install -g newman
      - yum install -y jq

      - aws s3 cp "s3://${S3_BUCKET}/postman-env-files/PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json" ./02postman/
      - aws s3 cp "s3://${S3_BUCKET}/postman-env-files/PetStoreAPI.postman_collection.json" ./02postman/
      - cd ./02postman
      - ./update-postman-env-file.sh

      - echo Build started on `date` from dir `pwd`
      - newman run PetStoreAPI.postman_collection.json --environment PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json -r junit

  JUnitReports: # CodeBuild will create a report group called "SurefireReports".
    files: #Store all of the files
      - '**/*'
    base-directory: '02postman/newman' # Location of the reports


In the install phase, we install the required Newman library. Recall this is the library that uses Postman collection and environment files to execute tests from the CLI. We also install the jq library that allows you to query JSON.

In the pre_build phase, we execute commands that set up our test environment. In this case, we need to grab the Postman collection and environment files from Amazon S3. Then we use a shell script, update-postman-env-file.sh to update the Postman environment file with the API Gateway URL for the API created in the build stage. Lets take a look at the shell script executed by CodeBuild:

#!/usr/bin/env bash

#This shell script updates Postman environment file with the API Gateway URL created
# via the api gateway deployment

echo "Running update-postman-env-file.sh"

api_gateway_url=`aws cloudformation describe-stacks \
  --stack-name petstore-api-stack \
  --query "Stacks[0].Outputs[*].{OutputValueValue:OutputValue}" --output text`

echo "API Gateway URL:" ${api_gateway_url}

jq -e --arg apigwurl "$api_gateway_url" '(.values[] | select(.key=="apigw-root") | .value) = $apigwurl' \
  PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json > PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json.tmp \
  && cp PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json.tmp PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json \
  && rm PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json.tmp

echo "Updated PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json"

cat PetStoreAPIEnvironment.postman_environment.json


This shell script wraps AWS API commands to get the required API Gateway URL from the AWS CloudFormation stack output and uses this value to update the Postman environment file. Notice how we also use the jq library installed earlier.

Once this is done, we move on to the build phase in our postman-newman-buildspec.yml. Note in the commands section how we execute the Newman command line runner by passing the required Postman collection and environment files. Also, notice how we specify to Newman that we want these reports in JUnit style output. This is very important, as this allows CodeBuild Reports to consume and visualize this output.

Once our test run is complete, we specify in our buildspec file where our test results JUnit files are available. This allows CodeBuild Reports to consume our JUnit test results for visualization.

You can accomplish all of this without having to provision, manage, and scale your own build servers.

Working with CodeBuild’s test reporting feature

CodeBuild announced a new reporting feature that allows you to view the reports generated by functional or integration tests. You can use your test reports to view trends and test and failure rates to help you optimize builds. The test file format can be JUnit XML or Cucumber JSON. You can create your test cases with any test framework that can create files in one of those formats (for example, Surefire JUnit plugin, TestNG, or Cucumber).

Using this feature, you can see the history of your test runs and see duration for the entire report, as shown in the following screenshots:


test run trends


test run summary information

It also provides details for individual test cases within a report, as shown in the following screenshot.


details for individual test cases within a report



You can select any individual test case to see its details. The following screenshot shows details of a failed test case.

details of a failed test case



Please note that at the time of this publication, the CodeBuild reporting feature is in preview.


After the tests are completed, we recommend the following steps to clean-up the resources created in this post and avoid any charges.

1. Delete the AWS CloudFormation stack petstore-api-stack to delete the PetStore API deployed by the pipeline stack

2. Delete the pipeline artifact bucket created by the petstore-api-pipeline stack.

This is the bucket referred to as CodePipelineArtifactBucket in the resources tab of the petstore-api-pipeline stack and begins with the name: petstore-api-pipeline-codepipeline-artifact-bucket. This bucket needs to be deleted in order to delete the pipeline stack.

3. Delete the AWS CloudFormation stack petstore-api-pipeline to delete the AWS CodePipeline pipeline that builds and deploys the PetStore API.


Continuous Integration is a DevOps best practice that helps improve software quality. In this blog post, we showed how you can use AWS Services such as CodeBuild and CodePipeline with Postman, a powerful API testing and development tool, to easily adopt Continuous Integration and DevOps best practices into your API development process.

Monitoring and management with Amazon QuickSight and Athena in your CI/CD pipeline

Post Syndicated from Umair Nawaz original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/monitoring-and-management-with-amazon-quicksight-and-athena-in-your-ci-cd-pipeline/

One of the many ways to monitor and manage required CI/CD metrics is to use Amazon QuickSight to build customized visualizations. Additionally, by applying Lean management to software delivery processes, organizations can improve delivery of features faster, pivot when needed, respond to compliance and security changes, and take advantage of instant feedback to improve the customer delivery experience. This blog post demonstrates how AWS resources and tools can provide monitoring and information pertaining to their CI/CD pipelines.

There are three principles in Lean management that this artifact enables and to which it contributes:

  • Limiting work in progress by establishing constraints that drive process improvement and increase throughput.
  • Creating and maintaining dashboards displaying key quality information, productivity metrics, and current status of work (including defects).
  • Using data from development performance and operations monitoring tools to enable business decisions more frequently.


The following architectural diagram shows how to use AWS services to collect metrics from a CI/CD pipeline and deliver insights through Amazon QuickSight dashboards.

Architecture diagram showing an overview of how CI/CD metrics are extracted and transformed to create a dynamic QuickSight dashboard

In this example, the orchestrator for the CI/CD pipeline is AWS CodePipeline with the entry point as an AWS CodeCommit Git repository for source control. When a developer pushes a code change into the CodeCommit repository, the change goes through a series of phases in CodePipeline. AWS CodeBuild is responsible for performing build actions and, upon successful completion of this phase, AWS CodeDeploy kicks off the actions to execute the deployment.

For each action in CodePipeline, the following series of events occurs:

  • An Amazon CloudWatch rule creates a CloudWatch event containing the action’s metadata.
  • The CloudWatch event triggers an AWS Lambda function.
  • The Lambda function extracts relevant reporting data and writes it to a CSV file in an Amazon S3 bucket.
  • Amazon Athena queries the Amazon S3 bucket and loads the query results into SPICE (an in-memory engine for Amazon QuickSight).
  • Amazon QuickSight obtains data from SPICE to build dashboard displays for the management team.

Note: This solution is for an AWS account with an existing CodePipeline(s). If you do not have a CodePipeline, no metrics will be collected.

Getting started

To get started, follow these steps:

  • Create a Lambda function and copy the following code snippet. Be sure to replace the bucket name with the one used to store your event data. This Lambda function takes the payload from a CloudWatch event and extracts the field’s pipeline, time, state, execution, stage, and action to transform into a CSV file.

Note: Athena’s performance can be improved by compressing, partitioning, or converting data into columnar formats such as Apache Parquet. In this use-case, the dataset size is negligible therefore, a transformation from CSV to Parquet is not required.

import boto3
import csv
import datetime
import os

 # Analyze payload from CloudWatch Event
 def pipeline_execution(data):
     print (data)
     # Specify data fields to deliver to S3
     if "stage" in data['detail'].keys():
     if "action" in data['detail'].keys():
     values = '\n'.join(str(v) for v in row)
     return values

 # Upload CSV file to S3 bucket
 def upload_data_to_s3(data):
     runDate = datetime.datetime.now().strftime("%Y-%m-%d_%H:%M:%S:%f")
     response = s3.put_object(

 def lambda_handler(event, context):
  • Create an Athena table to query the data stored in the Amazon S3 bucket. Execute the following SQL in the Athena query console and provide the bucket name that will hold the data.
   `pipeline` string, 
   `time` string, 
   `state` string, 
   `execution` string, 
   `stage` string, 
   `action` string)
  • Create a CloudWatch event rule that passes events to the Lambda function created in Step 1. In the event rule configuration, set the Service Name as CodePipeline and, for Event Type, select All Events.

Sample Dataset view from Athena.

Sample Athena query and the results

Amazon QuickSight visuals

After the initial setup is done, you are ready to create your QuickSight dashboard. Be sure to check that the Athena permissions are properly set before creating an analysis to be published as an Amazon QuickSight dashboard.

Below are diagrams and figures from Amazon QuickSight that can be generated using the event data queried from Athena. In this example, you can see how many executions happened in the account and how many were successful.

The following screenshot shows that most pipeline executions are failing. A manager might be concerned that this points to a significant issue and prompt an investigation in which they can allocate resources to improve delivery and efficiency.

QuickSight Dashboard showing total execution successes and failures

The visual for this solution is dynamic in nature. In case the pipeline has more or fewer actions, the visual will adjust automatically to reflect all actions. After looking at the success and failure rates for each CodePipeline action in Amazon QuickSight, as shown in the following screenshot, users can take targeted actions quickly. For example, if the team sees a lot of failures due to vulnerability scanning, they can work on improving that problem area to drive value for future code releases.

QuickSight Dashboard showing the successes and failures of pipeline actions

Day-over-day visuals reflect date-specific activity and enable teams to see their progress over a period of time.

QuickSight Dashboard showing day over day results of successful CI/CD executions and failures

Amazon QuickSight offers controls that can be configured to apply filters to visuals. For example, the following screenshot demonstrates how users can toggle between visuals for different applications.

QuickSight's control function to switch between different visualization options

Cleanup (optional)

In order to avoid unintended charges, delete the following resources:

  • Amazon CloudWatch event rule
  • Lambda function
  • Amazon S3 Bucket (the location in which CSV files generated by the Lambda function are stored)
  • Athena external table
  • Amazon QuickSight data sets
  • Analysis and dashboard


In this blog, we showed how metrics can be derived from a CI/CD pipeline. Utilizing Amazon QuickSight to create visuals from these metrics allows teams to continuously deliver updates on the deployment process to management. The aggregation of the captured data over time allows individual developers and teams to improve their processes. That is the goal of creating a Lean DevOps process: to oversee the meta-delivery pipeline and optimize all future releases by identifying weak spots and points of risk during the entire release process.


About the Authors

Umair Nawaz is a DevOps Engineer at Amazon Web Services in New York City. He works on building secure architectures and advises enterprises on agile software delivery. He is motivated to solve problems strategically by utilizing modern technologies.
Christopher Flores is an Engagement Manager at Amazon Web Services in New York City. He leads AWS developers, partners, and client teams in using the customer engagement accelerator framework. Christopher expedites stakeholder alignment, enterprise cohesion and risk mitigation while ensuring feedback loops to close the engagement lifecycle.
Carol Liao is a Cloud Infrastructure Architect at Amazon Web Services in New York City. She enjoys designing and developing modern IT solutions in the cloud where there is always more to learn, more problems to solve, and more to build.


Testing and creating CI/CD pipelines for AWS Step Functions

Post Syndicated from Matt Noyce original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/testing-and-creating-ci-cd-pipelines-for-aws-step-functions-using-aws-codepipeline-and-aws-codebuild/

AWS Step Functions allow users to easily create workflows that are highly available, serverless, and intuitive. Step Functions natively integrate with a variety of AWS services including, but not limited to, AWS Lambda, AWS Batch, AWS Fargate, and Amazon SageMaker. It offers the ability to natively add error handling, retry logic, and complex branching, all through an easy-to-use JSON-based language known as the Amazon States Language.

AWS CodePipeline is a fully managed Continuous Delivery System that allows for easy and highly configurable methods for automating release pipelines. CodePipeline allows the end-user the ability to build, test, and deploy their most critical applications and infrastructure in a reliable and repeatable manner.

AWS CodeCommit is a fully managed and secure source control repository service. It eliminates the need to support and scale infrastructure to support highly available and critical code repository systems.

This blog post demonstrates how to create a CI/CD pipeline to comprehensively test an AWS Step Function state machine from start to finish using CodeCommit, AWS CodeBuild, CodePipeline, and Python.

CI/CD pipeline steps

The pipeline contains the following steps, as shown in the following diagram.

CI/CD pipeline steps

  1. Pull the source code from source control.
  2. Lint any configuration files.
  3. Run unit tests against the AWS Lambda functions in codebase.
  4. Deploy the test pipeline.
  5. Run end-to-end tests against the test pipeline.
  6. Clean up test state machine and test infrastructure.
  7. Send approval to approvers.
  8. Deploy to Production.


In order to get started building this CI/CD pipeline there are a few prerequisites that must be met:

  1. Create or use an existing AWS account (instructions on creating an account can be found here).
  2. Define or use the example AWS Step Function states language definition (found below).
  3. Write the appropriate unit tests for your Lambda functions.
  4. Determine end-to-end tests to be run against AWS Step Function state machine.

The CodePipeline project

The following screenshot depicts what the CodePipeline project looks like, including the set of stages run in order to securely, reliably, and confidently deploy the AWS Step Function state machine to Production.

CodePipeline project

Creating a CodeCommit repository

To begin, navigate to the AWS console to create a new CodeCommit repository for your state machine.

CodeCommit repository

In this example, the repository is named CalculationStateMachine, as it contains the contents of the state machine definition, Python tests, and CodeBuild configurations.

CodeCommit structure

Breakdown of repository structure

In the CodeCommit repository above we have the following folder structure:

  1. config – this is where all of the Buildspec files will live for our AWS CodeBuild jobs.
  2. lambdas – this is where we will store all of our AWS Lambda functions.
  3. tests – this is the top-level folder for unit and end-to-end tests. It contains two sub-folders (unit and e2e).
  4. cloudformation – this is where we will add any extra CloudFormation templates.

Defining the state machine

Inside of the CodeCommit repository, create a State Machine Definition file called sm_def.json that defines the state machine in Amazon States Language.

This example creates a state machine that invokes a collection of Lambda functions to perform calculations on the given input values. Take note that it also performs a check against a specific value and, through the use of a Choice state, either continues the pipeline or exits it.

sm_def.json file:

  "Comment": "CalulationStateMachine",
  "StartAt": "CleanInput",
  "States": {
    "CleanInput": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::lambda:invoke",
      "Parameters": {
        "FunctionName": "CleanInput",
        "Payload": {
          "input.$": "$"
      "Next": "Multiply"
    "Multiply": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::lambda:invoke",
      "Parameters": {
        "FunctionName": "Multiply",
        "Payload": {
          "input.$": "$.Payload"
      "Next": "Choice"
    "Choice": {
      "Type": "Choice",
      "Choices": [
          "Variable": "$.Payload.result",
          "NumericGreaterThanEquals": 20,
          "Next": "Subtract"
      "Default": "Notify"
    "Subtract": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::lambda:invoke",
      "Parameters": {
        "FunctionName": "Subtract",
        "Payload": {
          "input.$": "$.Payload"
      "Next": "Add"
    "Notify": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::sns:publish",
      "Parameters": {
        "TopicArn": "arn:aws:sns:us-east-1:657860672583:CalculateNotify",
        "Message.$": "$$",
        "Subject": "Failed Test"
      "End": true
    "Add": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::lambda:invoke",
      "Parameters": {
        "FunctionName": "Add",
        "Payload": {
          "input.$": "$.Payload"
      "Next": "Divide"
    "Divide": {
      "Type": "Task",
      "Resource": "arn:aws:states:::lambda:invoke",
      "Parameters": {
        "FunctionName": "Divide",
        "Payload": {
          "input.$": "$.Payload"
      "End": true

This will yield the following AWS Step Function state machine after the pipeline completes:

State machine

CodeBuild Spec files

The CI/CD pipeline uses a collection of CodeBuild BuildSpec files chained together through CodePipeline. The following sections demonstrate what these BuildSpec files look like and how they can be used to chain together and build a full CI/CD pipeline.

AWS States Language linter

In order to determine whether or not the State Machine Definition is valid, include a stage in your CodePipeline configuration to evaluate it. Through the use of a Ruby Gem called statelint, you can verify the validity of your state machine definition as follows:

lint_buildspec.yaml file:

version: 0.2
  git-credential-helper: yes
      ruby: 2.6
      - yum -y install rubygems
      - gem install statelint

      - statelint sm_def.json

If your configuration is valid, you do not see any output messages. If the configuration is invalid, you receive a message telling you that the definition is invalid and the pipeline terminates.

Lambda unit testing

In order to test your Lambda function code, you need to evaluate whether or not it passes a set of tests. You can test each individual Lambda function deployed and used inside of the state machine. You can feed various inputs into your Lambda functions and assert that the output is what you expect it to be. In this case, you use Python pytest to kick-off tests and validate results.

unit_test_buildspec.yaml file:

version: 0.2
  git-credential-helper: yes
      python: 3.8
      - pip3 install -r tests/requirements.txt

      - pytest -s -vvv tests/unit/ --junitxml=reports/unit.xml

      - "**/*"
    base-directory: "reports"

Take note that in the CodeCommit repository includes a directory called tests/unit, which includes a collection of unit tests that are run and validated against your Lambda function code. Another very important part of this BuildSpec file is the reports section, which generates reports and metrics about the results, trends, and overall success of your tests.

CodeBuild test reports

After running the unit tests, you are able to see reports about the results of the run. Take note of the reports section of the BuildSpec file, along with the –junitxml=reports/unit.xml command run along with the pytest command. This generates a set of reports that can be visualized in CodeBuild.

Navigate to the specific CodeBuild project you want to examine and click on the specific execution of interest. There is a tab called Reports, as seen in the following screenshot:

Test reports

Select the specific report of interest to see a breakdown of the tests that have run, as shown in the following screenshot:

Test visualization

With Report Groups, you can also view an aggregated list of tests that have run over time. This report includes various features such as the number of average test cases that have run, average duration, and the overall pass rate, as shown in the following screenshot:

Report groups

The AWS CloudFormation template step

The following BuildSpec file is used to generate an AWS CloudFormation template that inject the State Machine Definition into AWS CloudFormation.

template_sm_buildspec.yaml file:

version: 0.2
  git-credential-helper: yes
      python: 3.8

      - python template_statemachine_cf.py

The Python script that templates AWS CloudFormation to deploy the State Machine Definition given the sm_def.json file in your repository follows:

template_statemachine_cf.py file:

import sys
import json

def read_sm_def (
    sm_def_file: str
) -> dict:
    Reads state machine definition from a file and returns it as a dictionary.

        sm_def_file (str) = the name of the state machine definition file.

        sm_def_dict (dict) = the state machine definition as a dictionary.

        with open(f"{sm_def_file}", "r") as f:
            return f.read()
    except IOError as e:
        print("Path does not exist!")

def template_state_machine(
    sm_def: dict
) -> dict:
    Templates out the CloudFormation for creating a state machine.

        sm_def (dict) = a dictionary definition of the aws states language state machine.

        templated_cf (dict) = a dictionary definition of the state machine.
    templated_cf = {
        "AWSTemplateFormatVersion": "2010-09-09",
        "Description": "Creates the Step Function State Machine and associated IAM roles and policies",
        "Parameters": {
            "StateMachineName": {
                "Description": "The name of the State Machine",
                "Type": "String"
        "Resources": {
            "StateMachineLambdaRole": {
                "Type": "AWS::IAM::Role",
                "Properties": {
                    "AssumeRolePolicyDocument": {
                        "Version": "2012-10-17",
                        "Statement": [
                                "Effect": "Allow",
                                "Principal": {
                                    "Service": "states.amazonaws.com"
                                "Action": "sts:AssumeRole"
                    "Policies": [
                            "PolicyName": {
                                "Fn::Sub": "States-Lambda-Execution-${AWS::StackName}-Policy"
                            "PolicyDocument": {
                                "Version": "2012-10-17",
                                "Statement": [
                                        "Effect": "Allow",
                                        "Action": [
                                        "Resource": "*"
                                        "Effect": "Allow",
                                        "Action": [
                                        "Resource": "*"
            "StateMachine": {
                "Type": "AWS::StepFunctions::StateMachine",
                "Properties": {
                    "DefinitionString": sm_def,
                    "RoleArn": {
                        "Fn::GetAtt": [
                    "StateMachineName": {
                        "Ref": "StateMachineName"

    return templated_cf

sm_def_dict = read_sm_def(


cfm_sm_def = template_state_machine(

with open("sm_cfm.json", "w") as f:

Deploying the test pipeline

In order to verify the full functionality of an entire state machine, you should stand it up so that it can be tested appropriately. This is an exact replica of what you will deploy to Production: a completely separate stack from the actual production stack that is deployed after passing appropriate end-to-end tests and approvals. You can take advantage of the AWS CloudFormation target supported by CodePipeline. Please take note of the configuration in the following screenshot, which shows how to configure this step in the AWS console:

Deploy test pipeline

End-to-end testing

In order to validate that the entire state machine works and executes without issues given any specific changes, feed it some sample inputs and make assertions on specific output values. If the specific assertions pass and you get the output that you expect to receive, you can proceed to the manual approval phase.

e2e_tests_buildspec.yaml file:

version: 0.2
  git-credential-helper: yes
      python: 3.8
      - pip3 install -r tests/requirements.txt

      - pytest -s -vvv tests/e2e/ --junitxml=reports/e2e.xml

      - "**/*"
    base-directory: "reports"

Manual approval (SNS topic notification)

In order to proceed forward in the CI/CD pipeline, there should be a formal approval phase before moving forward with a deployment to Production. Using the Manual Approval stage in AWS CodePipeline, you can configure the pipeline to halt and send a message to an Amazon SNS topic before moving on further. The SNS topic can have a variety of subscribers, but in this case, subscribe an approver email address to the topic so that they can be notified whenever an approval is requested. Once the approver approves the pipeline to move to Production, the pipeline will proceed with deploying the production version of the Step Function state machine.

This Manual Approval stage can be configured in the AWS console using a configuration similar to the following:

Manual approval

Deploying to Production

After the linting, unit testing, end-to-end testing, and the Manual Approval phases have passed, you can move on to deploying the Step Function state machine to Production. This phase is similar to the Deploy Test Stage phase, except the name of your AWS CloudFormation stack is different. In this case, you also take advantage of the AWS CloudFormation target for CodeDeploy:

Deploy to production

After this stage completes successfully, your pipeline execution is complete.


After validating that the test state machine and Lambda functions work, include a CloudFormation step that will tear-down the existing test infrastructure (as it is no longer needed). This can be configured as a new CodePipeline step similar to the below configuration:

CloudFormation Template for cleaning up resources


You have linted and validated your AWS States Language definition, unit tested your Lambda function code, deployed a test AWS state machine, run end-to-end tests, received Manual Approval to deploy to Production, and deployed to Production. This gives you and your team confidence that any changes made to your state machine and surrounding Lambda function code perform correctly in Production.


About the Author

matt noyce profile photo


Matt Noyce is a Cloud Application Architect in Professional Services at Amazon Web Services.
He works with customers to architect, design, automate, and build solutions on AWS
for their business needs.

Identifying and resolving security code vulnerabilities using Snyk in AWS CI/CD Pipeline

Post Syndicated from Jay Yeras original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/identifying-and-resolving-vulnerabilities-in-your-code/

The majority of companies have embraced open-source software (OSS) at an accelerated rate even when building proprietary applications. Some of the obvious benefits for this shift include transparency, cost, flexibility, and a faster time to market. Snyk’s unique combination of developer-first tooling and best in class security depth enables businesses to easily build security into their continuous development process.

Even for teams building proprietary code, use of open-source packages and libraries is a necessity. In reality, a developer’s own code is often a small core within the app, and the rest is open-source software. While relying on third-party elements has obvious benefits, it also presents numerous complexities. Inadvertently introducing vulnerabilities into your codebase through repositories that are maintained in a distributed fashion and with widely varying levels of security expertise can be common, and opens up applications to effective attacks downstream.

There are three common barriers to truly effective open-source security:

  1. The security task remains in the realm of security and compliance, often perpetuating the siloed structure that DevOps strives to eliminate and slowing down release pace.
  2. Current practice may offer automated scanning of repositories, but the remediation advice it provides is manual and often un-actionable.
  3. The data generated often focuses solely on public sources, without unique and timely insights.

Developer-led application security

This blog post demonstrates techniques to improve your application security posture using Snyk tools to seamlessly integrate within the developer workflow using AWS services such as Amazon ECR, AWS Lambda, AWS CodePipeline, and AWS CodeBuild. Snyk is a SaaS offering that organizations use to find, fix, prevent, and monitor open source dependencies. Snyk is a developer-first platform that can be easily integrated into the Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC). The examples presented in this post enable you to actively scan code checked into source code management, container images, and serverless, creating a highly efficient and effective method of managing the risk inherent to open source dependencies.


The examples provided in this post assume that you already have an AWS account and that your account has the ability to create new IAM roles and scope other IAM permissions. You can use your integrated development environment (IDE) of choice. The examples reference AWS Cloud9 cloud-based IDE. An AWS Quick Start for Cloud9 is available to quickly deploy to either a new or existing Amazon VPC and offers expandable Amazon EBS volume size.

Sample code and AWS CloudFormation templates are available to simplify provisioning the various services you need to configure this integration. You can fork or clone those resources. You also need a working knowledge of git and how to fork or clone within your source provider to complete these tasks.

cd ~/environment && \ 
git clone https://github.com/aws-samples/aws-modernization-with-snyk.git modernization-workshop 
cd modernization-workshop 
git submodule init 
git submodule update

Configure your CI/CD pipeline

The workflow for this example consists of a continuous integration and continuous delivery pipeline leveraging AWS CodeCommit, AWS CodePipeline, AWS CodeBuild, Amazon ECR, and AWS Fargate, as shown in the following screenshot.

CI/CD Pipeline

For simplicity, AWS CloudFormation templates are available in the sample repo for services.yaml, pipeline.yaml, and ecs-fargate.yaml, which deploy all services necessary for this example.

Launch AWS CloudFormation templates

A detailed step-by-step guide can be found in the self-paced workshop, but if you are familiar with AWS CloudFormation, you can launch the templates in three steps. From your Cloud9 IDE terminal, change directory to the location of the sample templates and complete the following three steps.

1) Launch basic services

aws cloudformation create-stack --stack-name WorkshopServices --template-body file://services.yaml \
--capabilities CAPABILITY_NAMED_IAM until [[ `aws cloudformation describe-stacks \
--stack-name "WorkshopServices" --query "Stacks[0].[StackStatus]" \
--output text` == "CREATE_COMPLETE" ]]; do echo "The stack is NOT in a state of CREATE_COMPLETE at `date`"; sleep 30; done &&; echo "The Stack is built at `date` - Please proceed"

2) Launch Fargate:

aws cloudformation create-stack --stack-name WorkshopECS --template-body file://ecs-fargate.yaml \
--capabilities CAPABILITY_NAMED_IAM until [[ `aws cloudformation describe-stacks \ 
--stack-name "WorkshopECS" --query "Stacks[0].[StackStatus]" \ 
--output text` == "CREATE_COMPLETE" ]]; do echo "The stack is NOT in a state of CREATE_COMPLETE at `date`"; sleep 30; done &&; echo "The Stack is built at `date` - Please proceed"

3) From your Cloud9 IDE terminal, change directory to the location of the sample templates and run the following command:

aws cloudformation create-stack --stack-name WorkshopPipeline --template-body file://pipeline.yaml \
--capabilities CAPABILITY_NAMED_IAM until [[ `aws cloudformation describe-stacks \
--stack-name "WorkshopPipeline" --query "Stacks[0].[StackStatus]" \
--output text` == "CREATE_COMPLETE" ]]; do echo "The stack is NOT in a state of CREATE_COMPLETE at `date`"; sleep 30; done &&; echo "The Stack is built at `date` - Please proceed"

Improving your security posture

You need to sign up for a free account with Snyk. You may use your Google, Bitbucket, or Github credentials to sign up. Snyk utilizes these services for authentication and does not store your password. Once signed up, navigate to your name and select Account Settings. Under API Token, choose Show, which will reveal the token to copy, and copy this value. It will be unique for each user.

Save your password to the session manager

Run the following command, replacing abc123 with your unique token. This places the token in the session parameter manager.

aws ssm put-parameter --name "snykAuthToken" --value "abc123" --type SecureString

Set up application scanning

Next, you need to insert testing with Snyk after maven builds the application. The simplest method is to insert commands to download, authorize, and run the Snyk commands after maven has built the application/dependency tree.

The sample Dockerfile contains an environment variable from a value passed to the docker build command, which contains the token for Snyk. By using an environment variable, Snyk automatically detects the token when used.

#~~~~~~~SNYK Variable~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
# Declare Snyktoken as a build-arg ARG snyk_auth_token
# Set the SNYK_TOKEN environment variable ENV

Download Snyk, and run a test, looking for medium to high severity issues. If the build succeeds, post the results to Snyk for monitoring and reporting. If a new vulnerability is found, you are notified.

# package the application
RUN mvn package -Dmaven.test.skip=true

#~~~~~~~SNYK test~~~~~~~~~~~~
# download, configure and run snyk. Break build if vulns present, post results to `https://snyk.io/`
RUN curl -Lo ./snyk "https://github.com/snyk/snyk/releases/download/v1.210.0/snyk-linux"
RUN chmod -R +x ./snyk
#Auth set through environment variable
RUN ./snyk test --severity-threshold=medium
RUN ./snyk monitor

Set up docker scanning

Later in the build process, a docker image is created. Analyze it for vulnerabilities in buildspec.yml. First, pull the Snyk token snykAuthToken from the parameter store.

    SNYK_AUTH_TOKEN: "snykAuthToken"

Next, in the prebuild phase, install Snyk.

      - echo Logging in to Amazon ECR...
      - aws --version
      - $(aws ecr get-login --region $AWS_DEFAULT_REGION --no-include-email)
      - REPOSITORY_URI=$(aws ecr describe-repositories --repository-name petstore_frontend --query=repositories[0].repositoryUri --output=text)
      - IMAGE_TAG=${COMMIT_HASH:=latest}
      - PWD=$(pwd)
      - PWDUTILS=$(pwd)
      - curl -Lo ./snyk "https://github.com/snyk/snyk/releases/download/v1.210.0/snyk-linux"
      - chmod -R +x ./snyk

Next, in the build phase, pass the token to the docker compose command, where it is retrieved in the Dockerfile code you set up to test the application.

      - echo Build started on `date`
      - echo Building the Docker image...
      - cd modules/containerize-application
      - docker build --build-arg snyk_auth_token=$SNYK_AUTH_TOKEN -t $REPOSITORY_URI:latest.

You can further extend the build phase to authorize the Snyk instance for testing the Docker image that’s produced. If it passes, you can pass the results to Snyk for monitoring and reporting.

      - $PWDUTILS/snyk auth $SNYK_AUTH_TOKEN
      - $PWDUTILS/snyk test --docker $REPOSITORY_URI:latest
      - $PWDUTILS/snyk monitor --docker $REPOSITORY_URI:latest
      - docker tag $REPOSITORY_URI:latest $REPOSITORY_URI:$IMAGE_TAG

For reference, a sample buildspec.yaml configured with Snyk is available in the sample repo. You can either copy this file and overwrite your existing buildspec.yaml or open an editor and replace the contents.

Testing the application

Now that services have been provisioned and Snyk tools have been integrated into your CI/CD pipeline, any new git commit triggers a fresh build and application scanning with Snyk detects vulnerabilities in your code.

In the CodeBuild console, you can look at your build history to see why your build failed, identify security vulnerabilities, and pinpoint how to fix them.

Testing /usr/src/app...
✗ Medium severity vulnerability found in org.primefaces:primefaces
Description: Cross-site Scripting (XSS)
Info: https://snyk.io/vuln/SNYK-JAVA-ORGPRIMEFACES-31642
Introduced through: org.primefaces:[email protected]
From: org.primefaces:[email protected]
Upgrade direct dependency org.primefaces:[email protected] to org.primefaces:[email protected] (triggers upgrades to org.primefaces:[email protected])
✗ Medium severity vulnerability found in org.primefaces:primefaces
Description: Cross-site Scripting (XSS)
Info: https://snyk.io/vuln/SNYK-JAVA-ORGPRIMEFACES-31643
Introduced through: org.primefaces:[email protected]
From: org.primefaces:[email protected]
Upgrade direct dependency org.primefaces:[email protected] to org.primefaces:[email protected] (triggers upgrades to org.primefaces:[email protected])
Organisation: sample-integrations
Package manager: maven
Target file: pom.xml
Open source: no
Project path: /usr/src/app
Tested 37 dependencies for known vulnerabilities, found 2 vulnerabilities, 2 vulnerable paths.
The command '/bin/sh -c ./snyk test' returned a non-zero code: 1
[Container] 2020/02/14 03:46:22 Command did not exit successfully docker build --build-arg snyk_auth_token=$SNYK_AUTH_TOKEN -t $REPOSITORY_URI:latest . exit status 1
[Container] 2020/02/14 03:46:22 Phase complete: BUILD Success: false
[Container] 2020/02/14 03:46:22 Phase context status code: COMMAND_EXECUTION_ERROR Message: Error while executing command: docker build --build-arg snyk_auth_token=$SNYK_AUTH_TOKEN -t $REPOSITORY_URI:latest .. Reason: exit status 1


Once you remediate your vulnerabilities and check in your code, another build is triggered and an additional scan is performed by Snyk. This time, you should see the build pass with a status of Succeeded.

You can also drill down into the CodeBuild logs and see that Snyk successfully scanned the Docker Image and found no package dependency issues with your Docker container!

[Container] 2020/02/14 03:54:14 Running command $PWDUTILS/snyk test --docker $REPOSITORY_URI:latest
Testing 300326902600.dkr.ecr.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/petstore_frontend:latest...
Organisation: sample-integrations
Package manager: rpm
Docker image: 300326902600.dkr.ecr.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/petstore_frontend:latest
✓ Tested 190 dependencies for known vulnerabilities, no vulnerable paths found.


Snyk provides detailed reports for your imported projects. You can navigate to Projects and choose View Report to set the frequency with which the project is checked for vulnerabilities. You can also choose View Report and then the Dependencies tab to see which libraries were used. Snyk offers a comprehensive database and remediation guidance for known vulnerabilities in their Vulnerability DB. Specifics on potential vulnerabilities that may exist in your code would be contingent on the particular open source dependencies used with your application.

Cleaning up

Remember to delete any resources you may have created in order to avoid additional costs. If you used the AWS CloudFormation templates provided here, you can safely remove them by deleting those stacks from the AWS CloudFormation Console.


In this post, you learned how to leverage various AWS services to build a fully automated CI/CD pipeline and cloud IDE development environment. You also learned how to utilize Snyk to seamlessly integrate with AWS and secure your open-source dependencies and container images. If you are interested in learning more about DevSecOps with Snyk and AWS, then I invite you to check out this workshop and watch this video.


About the Author

Author Photo


Jay is a Senior Partner Solutions Architect at AWS bringing over 20 years of experience in various technical roles. He holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Information Systems and is a subject matter expert and thought leader for strategic initiatives that help customers embrace a DevOps culture.



Customizing triggers for AWS CodePipeline with AWS Lambda and Amazon CloudWatch Events

Post Syndicated from Bryant Bost original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/adding-custom-logic-to-aws-codepipeline-with-aws-lambda-and-amazon-cloudwatch-events/

AWS CodePipeline is a fully managed continuous delivery service that helps automate the build, test, and deploy processes of your application. Application owners use CodePipeline to manage releases by configuring “pipeline,” workflow constructs that describe the steps, from source code to deployed application, through which an application progresses as it is released. If you are new to CodePipeline, check out Getting Started with CodePipeline to get familiar with the core concepts and terminology.


In a default setup, a pipeline is kicked-off whenever a change in the configured pipeline source is detected. CodePipeline currently supports sourcing from AWS CodeCommit, GitHub, Amazon ECR, and Amazon S3. When using CodeCommit, Amazon ECR, or Amazon S3 as the source for a pipeline, CodePipeline uses an Amazon CloudWatch Event to detect changes in the source and immediately kick off a pipeline. When using GitHub as the source for a pipeline, CodePipeline uses a webhook to detect changes in a remote branch and kick off the pipeline. Note that CodePipeline also supports beginning pipeline executions based on periodic checks, although this is not a recommended pattern.

CodePipeline supports adding a number of custom actions and manual approvals to ensure that pipeline functionality is flexible and code releases are deliberate; however, without further customization, pipelines will still be kicked-off for every change in the pipeline source. To customize the logic that controls pipeline executions in the event of a source change, you can introduce a custom CloudWatch Event, which can result in the following benefits:

  • Multiple pipelines with a single source: Trigger select pipelines when multiple pipelines are listening to a single source. This can be useful if your organization is using monorepos, or is using a single repository to host configuration files for multiple instances of identical stacks.
  • Avoid reacting to unimportant files: Avoid triggering a pipeline when changing files that do not affect the application functionality (e.g. documentation files, readme files, and .gitignore files).
  • Conditionally kickoff pipelines based on environmental conditions: Use custom code to evaluate whether a pipeline should be triggered. This allows for further customization beyond polling a source repository or relying on a push event. For example, you could create custom logic to automatically reschedule deployments on holidays to the next available workday.

This post explores and demonstrates how to customize the actions that invoke a pipeline by modifying the default CloudWatch Events configuration that is used for CodeCommit, ECR, or S3 sources. To illustrate this customization, we will walk through two examples: prevent updates to documentation files from triggering a pipeline, and manage execution of multiple pipelines monitoring a single source repository.

The key concepts behind customizing pipeline invocations extend to GitHub sources and webhooks as well; however, creating a custom webhook is outside the scope of this post.

Sample Architecture

This post is only interested in controlling the execution of the pipeline (as opposed to the deploy, test, or approval stages), so it uses simple source and pipeline configurations. The sample architecture considers a simple CodePipeline with only two stages: source and build.

Example CodePipeline Architecture

Example CodePipeline Architecture with Custom CloudWatch Event Configuration

The sample CodeCommit repository consists only of buildspec.yml, readme.md, and script.py files.

Normally, after you create a pipeline, it automatically triggers a pipeline execution to release the latest version of your source code. From then on, every time you make a change to your source location, a new pipeline execution is triggered. In addition, you can manually re-run the last revision through a pipeline using the “Release Change” button in the console. This architecture uses a custom CloudWatch Event and AWS Lambda function to avoid commits that change only the readme.md file from initiating an execution of the pipeline.

Creating a custom CloudWatch Event

When we create a CodePipeline that monitors a CodeCommit (or other) source, a default CloudWatch Events rule is created to trigger our pipeline for every change to the CodeCommit repository. This CloudWatch Events rule monitors the CodeCommit repository for changes, and triggers the pipeline for events matching the referenceCreated or referenceUpdated CodeCommit Event (refer to CodeCommit Event Types for more information).

Default CloudWatch Events Rule to Trigger CodePipeline

Default CloudWatch Events Rule to Trigger CodePipeline

To introduce custom logic and control the events that kickoff the pipeline, this example configures the default CloudWatch Events rule to detect changes in the source and trigger a Lambda function rather than invoke the pipeline directly. The example uses a CodeCommit source, but the same principle applies to Amazon S3 and Amazon ECR sources as well, as these both use CloudWatch Events rules to notify CodePipeline of changes.

Custom CloudWatch Events Rule to Trigger CodePipeline

Custom CloudWatch Events Rule to Trigger CodePipeline

When a change is introduced to the CodeCommit repository, the configured Lambda function receives an event from CloudWatch signaling that there has been a source change.

   "detail-type":"CodeCommit Repository State Change",
      "callerUserArn":"arn:aws:sts::accountNumber:assumed-role/admin/roleName ",

The Lambda function is responsible for determining whether a source change necessitates kicking-off the pipeline, which in the example is necessary if the change contains modifications to files other than readme.md. To implement this, the Lambda function uses the commitId and oldCommitId fields provided in the body of the CloudWatch event message to determine which files have changed. If the function determines that a change has occurred to a “non-ignored” file, then the function programmatically executes the pipeline. Note that for S3 sources, it may be necessary to process an entire file zip archive, or to retrieve past versions of an artifact.

import boto3

files_to_ignore = [ "readme.md" ]

codecommit_client = boto3.client('codecommit')
codepipeline_client = boto3.client('codepipeline')

def lambda_handler(event, context):
    # Extract commits
    old_commit_id = event["detail"]["oldCommitId"]
    new_commit_id = event["detail"]["commitId"]
    # Get commit differences
    codecommit_response = codecommit_client.get_differences(
    # Search commit differences for files to ignore
    for difference in codecommit_response["differences"]:
        file_name = difference["afterBlob"]["path"].lower()
        # If non-ignored file is present, kickoff pipeline
        if file_name not in files_to_ignore:
            codepipeline_response = codepipeline_client.start_pipeline_execution(
            # Break to avoid executing the pipeline twice

Multiple pipelines sourcing from a single repository

Architectures that use a single-source repository monitored by multiple pipelines can add custom logic to control the types of events that trigger a specific pipeline to execute. Without customization, any change to the source repository would trigger all pipelines.

Consider the following example:

  • A CodeCommit repository contains a number of config files (for example, config_1.json and config_2.json).
  • Multiple pipelines (for example, codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-1 and codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-2) source from this CodeCommit repository.
  • Whenever a config file is updated, a custom CloudWatch Event triggers a Lambda function that is used to determine which config files changed, and therefore which pipelines should be executed.
Example CodePipeline Architecture

Example CodePipeline Architecture for Monorepos with Custom CloudWatch Event Configuration

This example follows the same pattern of creating a custom CloudWatch Event and Lambda function shown in the preceding example. However, in this scenario, the Lambda function is responsible for determining which files changed and which pipelines should be kicked off as a result. To execute this logic, the Lambda function uses the config_file_mapping variable to map files to corresponding pipelines. Pipelines are only executed if their designated config file has changed.

Note that the config_file_mapping can be exported to Amazon S3 or Amazon DynamoDB for more complex use cases.

import boto3

# Map config files to pipelines
config_file_mapping = {
        "config_1.json" : "codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-1",
        "config_2.json" : "codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-2"
codecommit_client = boto3.client('codecommit')
codepipeline_client = boto3.client('codepipeline')

def lambda_handler(event, context):
    # Extract commits
    old_commit_id = event["detail"]["oldCommitId"]
    new_commit_id = event["detail"]["commitId"]
    # Get commit differences
    codecommit_response = codecommit_client.get_differences(
    # Search commit differences for files that trigger executions
    for difference in codecommit_response["differences"]:
        file_name = difference["afterBlob"]["path"].lower()
        # If file corresponds to pipeline, execute pipeline
        if file_name in config_file_mapping:
            codepipeline_response = codepipeline_client.start_pipeline_execution(


For the first example, updates affecting only the readme.md file are completely ignored by the pipeline, while updates affecting other files begin a normal pipeline execution. For the second example, the two pipelines monitor the same source repository; however, codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-1 is executed only when config_1.json is updated and codepipeline-customization-sandbox-pipeline-2 is executed only when config_2.json is updated.

These CloudWatch Event and Lambda function combinations serve as a good general examples of the introduction of custom logic to pipeline kickoffs, and can be expanded to account for variously complex processing logic.


To avoid additional infrastructure costs from the examples described in this post, be sure to delete all CodeCommit repositories, CodePipeline pipelines, Lambda functions, and CodeBuild projects. When you delete a CodePipeline, the CloudWatch Events rule that was created automatically is deleted, even if the rule has been customized.


For scenarios which need you to define additional custom logic to control the execution of one or multiple pipelines, configuring a CloudWatch Event to trigger a Lambda function allows you to customize the conditions and types of events that can kick-off your pipeline.

Improving and securing your game-binaries distribution at scale

Post Syndicated from Ignacio Riesgo original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/compute/improving-and-securing-your-game-binaries-distribution-at-scale/

This post is contributed by Yahav Biran | Sr. Solutions Architect, AWS and Scott Selinger | Associate Solutions Architect, AWS 

One of the challenges that game publishers face when employing CI/CD processes is the distribution of updated game binaries in a scalable, secure, and cost-effective way. Continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) processes enable game publishers to improve games throughout their lifecycle.

Often, CI/CD jobs contain minor changes that cause the CI/CD processes to push a full set of game binaries over the internet. This is a suboptimal approach. It negatively affects the cost of development network resources, customer network resources (output and input bandwidth), and the time it takes for a game update to propagate.

This post proposes a method of optimizing the game integration and deployments. Specifically, this method improves the distribution of updated game binaries to various targets, such as game-server farms. The proposed mechanism also adds to the security model designed to include progressive layers, starting from the Amazon EC2 instance that runs the game server. It also improves security of the game binaries, the game assets, and the monitoring of the game server deployments across several AWS Regions.

Why CI/CD in gaming is hard today

Game server binaries are usually a native application that includes binaries like graphic, sound, network, and physics assets, as well as scripts and media files. Game servers are usually developed with game engines like Unreal, Amazon Lumberyard, and Unity. Game binaries typically take up tens of gigabytes. However, because game developer teams modify only a few tens of kilobytes every day, frequent distribution of a full set of binaries is wasteful.

For a standard global game deployment, distributing game binaries requires compressing the entire binaries set and transferring the compressed version to destinations, then decompressing it upon arrival. You can optimize the process by decoupling the various layers, pushing and deploying them individually.

In both cases, the continuous deployment process might be slow due to the compression and transfer durations. Also, distributing the image binaries incurs unnecessary data transfer costs, since data is duplicated. Other game-binary distribution methods may require the game publisher’s DevOps teams to install and maintain custom caching mechanisms.

This post demonstrates an optimal method for distributing game server updates. The solution uses containerized images stored in Amazon ECR and deployed using Amazon ECS or Amazon EKS to shorten the distribution duration and reduce network usage.

How can containers help?

Dockerized game binaries enable standard caching with no implementation from the game publisher. Dockerized game binaries allow game publishers to stage their continuous build process in two ways:

  • To rebuild only the layer that was updated in a particular build process and uses the other cached layers.
  • To reassemble both packages into a deployable game server.

The use of ECR with either ECS or EKS takes care of the last mile deployment to the Docker container host.

Larger application binaries mean longer application loading times. To reduce the overall application initialization time, I decouple the deployment of the binaries and media files to allow the application to update faster. For example, updates in the application media files do not require the replication of the engine binaries or media files. This is achievable if the application binaries can be deployed in a separate directory structure. For example:





Containerized game servers deployment on EKS

The application server can be deployed as a single Kubernetes pod with multiple containers. The engine media (/opt/local/engine-media), the application (/opt/local/app), and the application media (/opt/local/app-media) spawn as Kubernetes initContainers and the engine binary (/opt/local/engine) runs as the main container.

apiVersion: v1
kind: Pod
  name: my-game-app-pod
    app: my-game-app
      - name: engine-media-volume
          emptyDir: {}
      - name: app-volume
          emptyDir: {}
      - name: app-media-volume
          emptyDir: {}
        - name: app
          image: the-app- image
          imagePullPolicy: Always
            - "sh"
            - "-c"
            - "cp /* /opt/local/engine-media"
            - name: engine-media-volume
              mountPath: /opt/local/engine-media
        - name: engine-media
          image: the-engine-media-image
          imagePullPolicy: Always
            - "sh"
            - "-c"
            - "cp /* /opt/local/app"
            - name: app-volume
              mountPath: /opt/local/app
        - name: app-media
          image: the-app-media-image
          imagePullPolicy: Always
            - "sh"
            - "-c"
            - "cp /* /opt/local/app-media"
            - name: app-media-volume
              mountPath: /opt/local/app-media
  - name: the-engine
    image: the-engine-image
    imagePullPolicy: Always
       - name: engine-media-volume
         mountPath: /opt/local/engine-media
       - name: app-volume
         mountPath: /opt/local/app
       - name: app-media-volume
         mountPath: /opt/local/app-media
    command: ['sh', '-c', '/opt/local/engine/start.sh']

Applying multi-stage game binaries builds

In this post, I use Docker multi-stage builds for containerizing the game asset builds. I use AWS CodeBuild to manage the build and to deploy the updates of game engines like Amazon Lumberyard as ready-to-play dedicated game servers.

Using this method, frequent changes in the game binaries require less than 1% of the data transfer typically required by full image replication to the nodes that run the game-server instances. This results in significant improvements in build and integration time.

I provide a deployment example for Amazon Lumberyard Multiplayer Sample that is deployed to an EKS cluster, but this can also be done using different container orchestration technology and different game engines. I also show that the image being deployed as a game-server instance is always the latest image, which allows centralized control of the code to be scheduled upon distribution.

This example shows an update of only 50 MB of game assets, whereas the full game-server binary is 3.1 GB. With only 1.5% of the content being updated, that speeds up the build process by 90% compared to non-containerized game binaries.

For security with EKS, apply the imagePullPolicy: Always option as part of the Kubernetes best practice container images deployment option. This option ensures that the latest image is pulled every time that the pod is started, thus deploying images from a single source in ECR, in this case.

Example setup

  • Read through the following sample, a multiplayer game sample, and see how to build and structure multiplayer games to employ the various features of the GridMate networking library.
  • Create an AWS CodeCommit or GitHub repository (multiplayersample-lmbr) that includes the game engine binaries, the game assets (.pak, .cfg and more), AWS CodeBuild specs, and EKS deployment specs.
  • Create a CodeBuild project that points to the CodeCommit repo. The build image uses aws/codebuild/docker:18.09.0: the built-in image maintained by CodeBuild configured with 3 GB of memory and two vCPUs. The compute allocated for build capacity can be modified for cost and build time tradeoff.
  • Create an EKS cluster designated as a staging or an integration environment for the game title. In this case, it’s multiplayersample.

The binaries build Git repository

The Git repository is composed of five core components ordered by their size:

  • The game engine binaries (for example, BinLinux64.Dedicated.tar.gz). This is the compressed version of the game engine artifacts that are not updated regularly, hence they are deployed as a compressed file. The maintenance of this file is usually done by a different team than the developers working on the game title.
  • The game binaries (for example, MultiplayerSample_pc_Paks_Dedicated). This directory is maintained by the game development team and managed as a standard multi-branch repository. The artifacts under this directory get updated on a daily or weekly basis, depending on the game development plan.
  • The build-related specifications (for example, buildspec.yml  and Dockerfile). These files specify the build process. For simplicity, I only included the Docker build process to convey the speed of continuous integration. The process can be easily extended to include the game compilation and linked process as well.
  • The Docker artifacts for containerizing the game engine and the game binaries (for example, start.sh and start.py). These scripts usually are maintained by the game DevOps teams and updated outside of the regular game development plan. More details about these scripts can be found in a sample that describes how to deploy a game-server in Amazon EKS.
  • The deployment specifications (for example, eks-spec) specify the Kubernetes game-server deployment specs. This is for reference only, since the CD process usually runs in a separate set of resources like staging EKS clusters, which are owned and maintained by a different team.

The game build process

The build process starts with any Git push event on the Git repository. The build process includes three core phases denoted by pre_build, buildand post_build in multiplayersample-lmbr/buildspec.yml

  1. The pre_build phase unzips the game-engine binaries and logs in to the container registry (Amazon ECR) to prepare.
  2. The buildphase executes the docker build command that includes the multi-stage build.
    • The Dockerfile spec file describes the multi-stage image build process. It starts by adding the game-engine binaries to the Linux OS, ubuntu:18.04 in this example.
    • FROM ubuntu:18.04
    • ADD BinLinux64.Dedicated.tar /
    • It continues by adding the necessary packages to the game server (for example, ec2-metadata, boto3, libc, and Python) and the necessary scripts for controlling the game server runtime in EKS. These packages are only required for the CI/CD process. Therefore, they are only added in the CI/CD process. This enables a clean decoupling between the necessary packages for development, integration, and deployment, and simplifies the process for both teams.
    • RUN apt-get install -y python python-pip
    • RUN apt-get install -y net-tools vim
    • RUN apt-get install -y libc++-dev
    • RUN pip install mcstatus ec2-metadata boto3
    • ADD start.sh /start.sh
    • ADD start.py /start.py
    • The second part is to copy the game engine from the previous stage --from=0 to the next build stage. In this case, you copy the game engine binaries with the two COPY Docker directives.
    • COPY --from=0 /BinLinux64.Dedicated/* /BinLinux64.Dedicated/
    • COPY --from=0 /BinLinux64.Dedicated/qtlibs /BinLinux64.Dedicated/qtlibs/
    • Finally, the game binaries are added as a separate layer on top of the game-engine layers, which concludes the build. It’s expected that constant daily changes are made to this layer, which is why it is packaged separately. If your game includes other abstractions, you can break this step into several discrete Docker image layers.
    • ADD MultiplayerSample_pc_Paks_Dedicated /BinLinux64.Dedicated/
  3. The post_build phase pushes the game Docker image to the centralized container registry for further deployment to the various regional EKS clusters. In this phase, tag and push the new image to the designated container registry in ECR.



docker push


The game deployment process in EKS

At this point, you’ve pushed the updated image to the designated container registry in ECR (/$IMAGE_REPO_NAME:$IMAGE_TAG). This image is scheduled as a game server in an EKS cluster as game-server Kubernetes deployment, as described in the sample.

In this example, I use  imagePullPolicy: Always.

        image: /$IMAGE_REPO_NAME:$IMAGE_TAG/multiplayersample-build
        imagePullPolicy: Always
        name: multiplayersample

By using imagePullPolicy, you ensure that no one can circumvent Amazon ECR security. You can securely make ECR the single source of truth with regards to scheduled binaries. However, ECR to the worker nodes via kubelet, the node agent. Given the size of a whole image combined with the frequency with which it is pulled, that would amount to a significant additional cost to your project.

However, Docker layers allow you to update only the layers that were modified, preventing a whole image update. Also, they enable secure image distribution. In this example, only the layer MultiplayerSample_pc_Paks_Dedicated is updated.

Proposed CI/CD process

The following diagram shows an example end-to-end architecture of a full-scale game-server deployment using EKS as the orchestration system, ECR as the container registry, and CodeBuild as the build engine.

Game developers merge changes to the Git repository that include both the preconfigured game-engine binaries and the game artifacts. Upon merge events, CodeBuild builds a multistage game-server image that is pushed to a centralized container registry hosted by ECR. At this point, DevOps teams in different Regions continuously schedule the image as a game server, pulling only the updated layer in the game server image. This keeps the entire game-server fleet running the same game binaries set, making for a secure deployment.


Try it out

I published two examples to guide you through the process of building an Amazon EKS cluster and deploying a containerized game server with large binaries.


Adopting CI/CD in game development improves the software development lifecycle by continuously deploying quality-based updated game binaries. CI/CD in game development is usually hindered by the cost of distributing large binaries, in particular, by cross-regional deployments.

Non-containerized paradigms require deployment of the full set of binaries, which is an expensive and time-consuming task. Containerized game-server binaries with AWS build tools and Amazon EKS-based regional clusters of game servers enable secure and cost-effective distribution of large binary sets to enable increased agility in today’s game development.

In this post, I demonstrated a reduction of more than 90% of the network traffic required by implementing an effective CI/CD system in a large-scale deployment of multiplayer game servers.

Machine Learning with AWS Fargate and AWS CodePipeline at Corteva Agriscience

Post Syndicated from Nathan Taber original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/compute/machine-learning-with-aws-fargate-and-aws-codepipeline-at-corteva-agriscience/

This post contributed by Duke Takle and Kevin Hayes at Corteva Agriscience

At Corteva Agriscience, the agricultural division of DowDuPont, our purpose is to enrich the lives of those who produce and those who consume, ensuring progress for generations to come. As a global business, we support a network of research stations to improve agricultural productivity around the world

As analytical technology advances the volume of data, as well as the speed at which it must be processed, meeting the needs of our scientists poses unique challenges. Corteva Cloud Engineering teams are responsible for collaborating with and enabling software developers, data scientists, and others. Their work allows Corteva research and development to become the most efficient innovation machine in the agricultural industry.

Recently, our Systems and Innovations for Breeding and Seed Products organization approached the Cloud Engineering team with the challenge of how to deploy a novel machine learning (ML) algorithm for scoring genetic markers. The solution would require supporting labs across six continents in a process that is run daily. This algorithm replaces time-intensive manual scoring of genotypic assays with a robust, automated solution. When examining the solution space for this challenge, the main requirements for our solution were global deployability, application uptime, and scalability.

Before the implementing this algorithm in AWS, ML autoscoring was done as a proof of concept using pre-production instances on premises. It required several technicians to continue to process assays by hand. After implementing on AWS, we have enabled those technicians to be better used in other areas, such as technology development.

Solutions Considered

A RESTful web service seemed to be an obvious way to solve the problem presented. AWS has several patterns that could implement a RESTful web service, such as Amazon API Gateway, AWS Lambda, Amazon EC2, AWS Auto Scaling, Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) using the EC2 launch type, and AWS Fargate.

At the time, the project came into our backlog, we had just heard of Fargate. Fargate does have a few limitations (scratch storage, CPU, and memory), none of which were a problem. So EC2, Auto Scaling, and ECS with the EC2 launch type were ruled out because they would have introduced unneeded complexity. The unneeded complexity is mostly around management of EC2 instances to either run the application or the container needed for the solution.

When the project came into our group, there had been a substantial proof-of-concept done with a Docker container. While we are strong API Gateway and Lambda proponents, there is no need to duplicate processes or services that AWS provides. We also knew that we needed to be able to move fast. We wanted to put the power in the hands of our developers to focus on building out the solution. Additionally, we needed something that could scale across our organization and provide some rationalization in how we approach these problems. AWS services, such as Fargate, AWS CodePipeline, and AWS CloudFormation, made that possible.

Solution Overview

Our group prefers using existing AWS services to bring a complete project to the production environment.

CI/CD Pipeline

A complete discussion of the CI/CD pipeline for the project is beyond the scope of this post. However, in broad strokes, the pipeline is:

  1. Compile some C++ code wrapped in Python, create a Python wheel, and publish it to an artifact store.
  2. Create a Docker image with that wheel installed and publish it to ECR.
  3. Deploy and test the new image to our test environment.
  4. Deploy the new image to the production environment.


As mentioned earlier, the application is a Docker container deployed with the Fargate launch type. It uses an Aurora PostgreSQL DB instance for the backend data. The application itself is only needed internally so the Application Load Balancer is created with the scheme set to “internal” and deployed into our private application subnets.

Our environments are all constructed with CloudFormation templates. Each environment is constructed in a separate AWS account and connected back to a central utility account. The infrastructure stacks export a number of useful bits like the VPC, subnets, IAM roles, security groups, etc. This scheme allows us to move projects through the several accounts without changing the CloudFormation templates, just the parameters that are fed into them.

For this solution, we use an existing VPC, set of subnets, IAM role, and ACM certificate in the us-east-1 Region. The solution CloudFormation stack describes and manages the following resources:


A complete discussion of all the resources for the solution is beyond the scope of this post. However, we can explore the resource definitions of the components specific to Fargate. The following three simple segments of CloudFormation are all that is needed to create a Fargate stack: an ECS cluster, task definition, and service. More complete examples of the CloudFormation templates are linked at the end of this post, with stack creation instructions.


"ECSCluster": {
    "Properties" : {
        "ClusterName" : { "Ref": "clusterName" }

The ECS Cluster resource is a simple grouping for the other ECS resources to be created. The cluster created in this stack holds the tasks and service that implement the actual solution. Finally, in the AWS Management Console, the cluster is the entry point to find info about your ECS resources.


"fargateDemoTaskDefinition": {
    "Type": "AWS::ECS::TaskDefinition",
    "Properties": {
        "ContainerDefinitions": [
                "Essential": "true",
                "Image": { "Ref": "taskImage" },
                "LogConfiguration": {
                    "LogDriver": "awslogs",
                    "Options": {
                        "awslogs-group": {
                            "Ref": "cloudwatchLogsGroup"
                        "awslogs-region": {
                            "Ref": "AWS::Region"
                        "awslogs-stream-prefix": "fargate-demo-app"
                "Name": "fargate-demo-app",
                "PortMappings": [
                        "ContainerPort": 80
        "ExecutionRoleArn": {"Fn::ImportValue": "fargateDemoRoleArnV1"},
        "Family": {
            "Fn::Join": [
                [ { "Ref": "AWS::StackName" }, "-fargate-demo-app" ]
        "NetworkMode": "awsvpc",
        "RequiresCompatibilities" : [ "FARGATE" ],
        "TaskRoleArn": {"Fn::ImportValue": "fargateDemoRoleArnV1"},
        "Cpu": { "Ref": "cpuAllocation" },
        "Memory": { "Ref": "memoryAllocation" }

The ECS Task Definition is where we specify and configure the container. Interesting things to note are the CPU and memory configuration items. It is important to note the valid combinations for CPU/memory settings, as shown in the following table.

0.25 vCPU0.5 GB, 1 GB, and 2 GB
0.5 vCPUMin. 1 GB and Max. 4 GB, in 1-GB increments
1 vCPUMin. 2 GB and Max. 8 GB, in 1-GB increments
2 vCPUMin. 4 GB and Max. 16 GB, in 1-GB increments
4 vCPUMin. 8 GB and Max. 30 GB, in 1-GB increments


"fargateDemoService": {
     "Type": "AWS::ECS::Service",
     "DependsOn": [
     "Properties": {
         "Cluster": { "Ref": "ECSCluster" },
         "DesiredCount": { "Ref": "minimumCount" },
         "LaunchType": "FARGATE",
         "LoadBalancers": [
                 "ContainerName": "fargate-demo-app",
                 "ContainerPort": "80",
                 "TargetGroupArn": { "Ref": "fargateDemoTargetGroup" }
                 "SecurityGroups": [
                     { "Ref":"fargateDemoSecuityGroup" }
                    {"Fn::ImportValue": "privateSubnetOneV1"},
                    {"Fn::ImportValue": "privateSubnetTwoV1"},
                    {"Fn::ImportValue": "privateSubnetThreeV1"}
         "TaskDefinition": { "Ref":"fargateDemoTaskDefinition" }

The ECS Service resource is how we can configure where and how many instances of tasks are executed to solve our problem. In this case, we see that there are at least minimumCount instances of the task running in any of three private subnets in our VPC.


Deploying this algorithm on AWS using containers and Fargate allowed us to start running the application at scale with low support overhead. This has resulted in faster turnaround time with fewer staff and a concomitant reduction in cost.

“We are very excited with the deployment of Polaris, the autoscoring of the marker lab genotyping data using AWS technologies. This key technology deployment has enhanced performance, scalability, and efficiency of our global labs to deliver over 1.4 Billion data points annually to our key customers in Plant Breeding and Integrated Operations.”

Sandra Milach, Director of Systems and Innovations for Breeding and Seed Products.

We are distributing this solution to all our worldwide laboratories to harmonize data quality, and speed. We hope this enables an increase in the velocity of genetic gain to increase yields of crops for farmers around the world.

You can learn more about the work we do at Corteva at www.corteva.com.

Try it yourself:

The snippets above are instructive but not complete. We have published two repositories on GitHub that you can explore to see how we built this solution:

Note: the components in these repos do not include our production code, but they show you how this works using Amazon ECS and AWS Fargate.

Building, deploying, and operating containerized applications with AWS Fargate

Post Syndicated from Nathan Taber original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/compute/building-deploying-and-operating-containerized-applications-with-aws-fargate/

This post was contributed by Jason Umiker, AWS Solutions Architect.

Whether it’s helping facilitate a journey to microservices or deploying existing tools more easily and repeatably, many customers are moving toward containerized infrastructure and workflows. AWS provides many of the services and mechanisms to help you with that.

In this post, I show you how to use Amazon ECS and AWS Fargate, as well as AWS CodeBuild and AWS CodePipeline, for an end-to-end CI/CD container solution.

What is Amazon ECS?

Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) helps schedule and orchestrate containers across a fleet of servers. It involves installing an agent on each container host that takes instructions from the ECS control plane and relays them to the local Docker image on each one. ECS makes this easy by providing an optimized Amazon Machine Image (AMI) that launches automatically using the ECS console or CLI and that you can use to launch container hosts yourself.

It is up to you to choose the appropriate instance types, sizes, and quantity for your cluster fleet. You should have the capacity to deploy and scale workloads as well as to spread them across enough failure domains for high availability. Features like Auto Scaling groups help with that.

Also, while AWS provides Amazon Linux and Windows AMIs pre-configured for ECS, you are responsible for ongoing maintenance of the OS, which includes patching and security. Items that require regular patching or updating in this model are the OS, Docker, the ECS agent, and of course the contents of the container images.

Two of the key ECS concepts are Tasks and Services. A task is one or more containers that are to be scheduled together by ECS. A service is like an Auto Scaling group for tasks. It defines the quantity of tasks to run across the cluster, where they should be running (for example, across multiple Availability Zones), automatically associates them with a load balancer, and horizontally scales based on metrics that you define like CPI or memory utilization.

What is Fargate?

AWS Fargate is a new compute engine for Amazon ECS that runs containers without requiring you to deploy or manage the underlying Amazon EC2 instances. With Fargate, you specify an image to deploy and the amount of CPU and memory it requires. Fargate handles the updating and securing of the underlying Linux OS, Docker daemon, and ECS agent as well as all the infrastructure capacity management and scaling.

How to use Fargate?

Fargate is exposed as a launch type for ECS. It uses an ECS task and service definition that is similar to the traditional EC2 launch mode, with a few minor differences. It is easy to move tasks and services back and forth between launch types. The differences include:

  • Using the awsvpc network mode
  • Specifying the CPU and memory requirements for the task in the definition

The best way to learn how to use Fargate is to walk through the process and see it in action.

Walkthrough: Deploying a service with Fargate in the console

At the time of publication, Fargate for ECS is available in the N. Virginia, Ohio, Oregon, and Ireland AWS regions. This walkthrough works in any AWS region where Fargate is available.

If you’d prefer to use a CloudFormation template, this one covers Steps 1-4. After launching this template you can skip ahead to Explore Running Service after Step 4.

Step 1 – Create an ECS cluster

An ECS cluster is a logical construct for running groups of containers known as tasks. Clusters can also be used to segregate different environments or teams from each other. In the traditional EC2 launch mode, there are specific EC2 instances associated with and managed by each ECS cluster, but this is transparent to the customer with Fargate.

  1. Open the ECS console and ensure that Fargate is available in the selected Region (for example, N. Virginia).
  2. Choose Clusters, Create Cluster.
  3. Choose Networking only, Next step.
  4. For Cluster name, enter “Fargate”. If you don’t already have a VPC to use, select the Create VPC check box and accept the defaults as well. Choose Create.

Step 2 – Create a task definition, CloudWatch log group, and task execution role

A task is a collection of one or more containers that is the smallest deployable unit of your application. A task definition is a JSON document that serves as the blueprint for ECS to know how to deploy and run your tasks.

The console makes it easier to create this definition by exposing all the parameters graphically. In addition, the console creates two dependencies:

  • The Amazon CloudWatch log group to store the aggregated logs from the task
  • The task execution IAM role that gives Fargate the permissions to run the task
  1. In the left navigation pane, choose Task Definitions, Create new task definition.
  2. Under Select launch type compatibility, choose FARGATE, Next step.
  3. For Task Definition Name, enter NGINX.
  4. If you had an IAM role for your task, you would enter it in Task Role but you don’t need one for this example.
  5. The Network Mode is automatically set to awsvpc for Fargate
  6. Under Task size, for Task memory, choose 0.5 GB. For Task CPU, enter 0.25.
  7. Choose Add container.
  8. For Container name, enter NGINX.
  9. For Image, put nginx:1.13.9-alpine.
  10. For Port mappings type 80 into Container port.
  11. Choose Add, Create.

Step 3 – Create an Application Load Balancer

Sending incoming traffic through a load balancer is often a key piece of making an application both scalable and highly available. It can balance the traffic between multiple tasks, as well as ensure that traffic is only sent to healthy tasks. You can have the service manage the addition or removal of tasks from an Application Load Balancer as they come and go but that must be specified when the service is created. It’s a dependency that you create first.

  1. Open the EC2 console.
  2. In the left navigation pane, choose Load Balancers, Create Load Balancer.
  3. Under Application Load Balancer, choose Create.
  4. For Name, put NGINX.
  5. Choose the appropriate VPC ( if you let ECS create if for you).
  6. For Availability Zones, select both and choose Next: Configure Security Settings.
  7. Choose Next: Configure Security Groups.
  8. For Assign a security group, choose Create a new security group. Choose Next: Configure Routing.
  9. For Name, enter NGINX. For Target type, choose ip.
  10. Choose Next: Register Targets, Next: Review, Create.
  11. Select the new load balancer and note its DNS name (this is the public address for the service).

Step 4 – Create an ECS service using Fargate

A service in ECS using Fargate serves a similar purpose to an Auto Scaling group in EC2. It ensures that the needed number of tasks are running both for scaling as well as spreading the tasks over multiple Availability Zones for high availability. A service creates and destroys tasks as part of its role and can optionally add or remove them from an Application Load Balancer as targets as it does so.

  1. Open the ECS console and ensure that that Fargate is available in the selected Region (for example, N. Virginia).
  2. In the left navigation pane, choose Task Definitions.
  3. Select the NGINX task definition that you created and choose Actions, Create Service.
  4. For Launch Type, select Fargate.
  5. For Service name, enter NGINX.
  6. For Number of tasks, enter 1.
  7. Choose Next step.
  8. Under Subnets, choose both of the options.
  9. For Load balancer type, choose Application Load Balancer. It should then default to the NGINX version that you created earlier.
  10. Choose Add to load balancer.
  11. For Target group name, choose NGINX.
  12. Under DNS records for service discovery, for TTL, enter 60.
  13. Click Next step, Next step, and Create Service.

Explore the running service

At this point, you have a running NGINX service using Fargate. You can now explore what you have running and how it works. You can also ask it to scale up to two tasks across two Availability Zones in the console.

Go into the service and see details about the associated load balancer, tasks, events, metrics, and logs:

Scale the service from one task to multiple tasks:

  • Choose Update.
  • For Number of tasks, enter 2.
  • Choose Next step, Next step, Next step then Update Service.
  • Watch the event that is logged and the new additional task both appear.

On the service Details tab, open the NGINX Target Group Name link and see the IP address registered targets spread across the two zones.

Go to the DNS name for the Application Load Balancer in your browser and see the default NGINX page. Get the value from the Load Balancers dashboard in the EC2 console.

Walkthrough: Adding a CI/CD pipeline to your service

Now, I’m going to show you how to set up a CI/CD pipeline around this service. It watches a GitHub repo for changes and rebuilds the container with CodeBuild based on the buildspec.yml file and Dockerfile in the repo. If that build is successful, it then updates your Fargate service to deploy the new image.

If you’d prefer to use a CloudFormation Template, this one covers the creation of the dependencies so that the console will pre-fill these (CodeBuild Project and IAM Roles) during the creation of the CodePipeline in the steps below.

Step 1 – Create an ECR repository for the rebuilt container image

An ECR repository is a place to store your container images in a secure and reliable manner. Scaling and self-healing of Fargate tasks requires these images to be always available to be pulled when required. This is an important part of a container platform.

  1. Open the ECS console and ensure that that Fargate is available in the selected Region (for example N. Virginia).
  2. In the left navigation pane, under Amazon ECR, choose Repositories, Get started.
  3. For Repository name, put NGINX and choose Next step.

Step 2 – Fork the nginx-codebuild example into your own GitHub account

I have created an example project that takes the Dockerfile and config files for the official NGINX Docker Hub image and adds a buildspec.yml file to tell CodeBuild how to build the container and push it to your new ECR registry on completion. You can fork it into your own GitHub account for this CI/CD demo.

  1. Go to https://github.com/jasonumiker/nginx-codebuild.
  2. In the upper right corner, choose Fork.

Step 3 – Create the pipeline and associated IAM roles

You have two complementary AWS services for building a CI/CD pipeline for your containers. CodeBuild executes the build jobs and CodePipeline kicks off those builds when it notices that the source GitHub or CodeCommit repo changes. If successful, CodePipeline then deploys the new container image to Fargate.

The CodePipeline console can create the associated CodeBuild project, in addition to other dependencies such as the required IAM roles.

  1. Open the CodePipeline console and ensure that that Fargate is available in the selected Region (for example, N. Virginia).
  2. Choose Get started.
  3. For Pipeline name, enter NGINX and choose Next step.
  4. For Source provider, choose GitHub.
  5. Choose Connect to GitHub and log in.
    • For Repository, choose your forked nginx-codebuild repo. For Branch, enter master. Choose Next step.
  6. For Build provider, enter AWS CodeBuild.
  7. Select Create a new build project.
  8. For Project name, enter NGINX.
  9. For Operating system, choose Ubuntu. For Runtime, choose Docker. For Version, select the latest version.
  10. Expand Advanced and set the following environment variables:
    • AWS_ACCOUNT_ID with a value of the account number
    • IMAGE_REPO_NAME with a value of NGINX (or whatever ECR name that you used)
  11. Choose Save build project, Next step.
  12. For Deployment provider, choose Amazon ECS.
  13. For Cluster name, enter Fargate.
  14. For Service name, choose NGINX.
  15. For Image filename, enter images.json.
  16. Choose Next step.
  17. Choose Create role, Allow, Next step, and then choose Create pipeline.
  18. Open the IAM console and ensure that that Fargate is available in the selected Region (for example, N. Virginia).
  19. In the left navigation pane, choose Roles.
  20. Choose the code-build-nginx-service-role that was just created and choose Attach policy.
  21. For Policy type, choose AmazonEC2ContainerRegistryPowerUser and choose Attach policy.

Step 4 – Start the pipeline

You now have CodePipeline watching the GitHub repo for changes. It kicks off a CodeBuild build job on a change and, if the build is successful, creates a new deployment of the Fargate service with the new image.

Make a change to the source repo (even just adding a new dummy file) and then commit it and push it to master on your GitHub fork. This automatically kicks off the pipeline to build and deploy the change.


As you’ve seen, Fargate is fast and easy to set up, integrates well with the rest of the AWS platform, and saves you from much of the heavy lifting of running containers reliably at scale.

While it is useful to go through creating things in the console to understand them better we suggest automating them with infrastructure-as-code patterns via things like our CloudFormation to ensure that they are repeatable, and any changes can be managed. There are some example templates to help you get started in this post.

In addition, adding things like unit and integration testing, blue/green and/or manual approval gates into CodePipeline are often a good idea before deploying patterns like this to production in many organizations. Some additional examples to look at next include:

AWS Online Tech Talks – June 2018

Post Syndicated from Devin Watson original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/aws-online-tech-talks-june-2018/

AWS Online Tech Talks – June 2018

Join us this month to learn about AWS services and solutions. New this month, we have a fireside chat with the GM of Amazon WorkSpaces and our 2nd episode of the “How to re:Invent” series. We’ll also cover best practices, deep dives, use cases and more! Join us and register today!

Note – All sessions are free and in Pacific Time.

Tech talks featured this month:


Analytics & Big Data

June 18, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTGet Started with Real-Time Streaming Data in Under 5 Minutes – Learn how to use Amazon Kinesis to capture, store, and analyze streaming data in real-time including IoT device data, VPC flow logs, and clickstream data.
June 20, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PT – Insights For Everyone – Deploying Data across your Organization – Learn how to deploy data at scale using AWS Analytics and QuickSight’s new reader role and usage based pricing.


AWS re:Invent
June 13, 2018 | 05:00 PM – 05:30 PM PTEpisode 2: AWS re:Invent Breakout Content Secret Sauce – Hear from one of our own AWS content experts as we dive deep into the re:Invent content strategy and how we maintain a high bar.

June 25, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTAccelerating Containerized Workloads with Amazon EC2 Spot Instances – Learn how to efficiently deploy containerized workloads and easily manage clusters at any scale at a fraction of the cost with Spot Instances.

June 26, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTEnsuring Your Windows Server Workloads Are Well-Architected – Get the benefits, best practices and tools on running your Microsoft Workloads on AWS leveraging a well-architected approach.


June 25, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTRunning Kubernetes on AWS – Learn about the basics of running Kubernetes on AWS including how setup masters, networking, security, and add auto-scaling to your cluster.



June 18, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTOracle to Amazon Aurora Migration, Step by Step – Learn how to migrate your Oracle database to Amazon Aurora.

June 20, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTSet Up a CI/CD Pipeline for Deploying Containers Using the AWS Developer Tools – Learn how to set up a CI/CD pipeline for deploying containers using the AWS Developer Tools.


Enterprise & Hybrid
June 18, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTDe-risking Enterprise Migration with AWS Managed Services – Learn how enterprise customers are de-risking cloud adoption with AWS Managed Services.

June 19, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTLaunch AWS Faster using Automated Landing Zones – Learn how the AWS Landing Zone can automate the set up of best practice baselines when setting up new


AWS Environments

June 21, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTLeading Your Team Through a Cloud Transformation – Learn how you can help lead your organization through a cloud transformation.

June 21, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTEnabling New Retail Customer Experiences with Big Data – Learn how AWS can help retailers realize actual value from their big data and deliver on differentiated retail customer experiences.

June 28, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTFireside Chat: End User Collaboration on AWS – Learn how End User Compute services can help you deliver access to desktops and applications anywhere, anytime, using any device.

June 27, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTAWS IoT in the Connected Home – Learn how to use AWS IoT to build innovative Connected Home products.


Machine Learning

June 19, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTIntegrating Amazon SageMaker into your Enterprise – Learn how to integrate Amazon SageMaker and other AWS Services within an Enterprise environment.

June 21, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTBuilding Text Analytics Applications on AWS using Amazon Comprehend – Learn how you can unlock the value of your unstructured data with NLP-based text analytics.


Management Tools

June 20, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTOptimizing Application Performance and Costs with Auto Scaling – Learn how selecting the right scaling option can help optimize application performance and costs.


June 25, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTDrive User Engagement with Amazon Pinpoint – Learn how Amazon Pinpoint simplifies and streamlines effective user engagement.


Security, Identity & Compliance

June 26, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTUnderstanding AWS Secrets Manager – Learn how AWS Secrets Manager helps you rotate and manage access to secrets centrally.
June 28, 2018 | 09:00 AM – 09:45 AM PTUsing Amazon Inspector to Discover Potential Security Issues – See how Amazon Inspector can be used to discover security issues of your instances.



June 19, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTProductionize Serverless Application Building and Deployments with AWS SAM – Learn expert tips and techniques for building and deploying serverless applications at scale with AWS SAM.



June 26, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTDeep Dive: Hybrid Cloud Storage with AWS Storage Gateway – Learn how you can reduce your on-premises infrastructure by using the AWS Storage Gateway to connecting your applications to the scalable and reliable AWS storage services.
June 27, 2018 | 01:00 PM – 01:45 PM PTChanging the Game: Extending Compute Capabilities to the Edge – Discover how to change the game for IIoT and edge analytics applications with AWS Snowball Edge plus enhanced Compute instances.
June 28, 2018 | 11:00 AM – 11:45 AM PTBig Data and Analytics Workloads on Amazon EFS – Get best practices and deployment advice for running big data and analytics workloads on Amazon EFS.

Use Slack ChatOps to Deploy Your Code – How to Integrate Your Pipeline in AWS CodePipeline with Your Slack Channel

Post Syndicated from Rumi Olsen original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/use-slack-chatops-to-deploy-your-code-how-to-integrate-your-pipeline-in-aws-codepipeline-with-your-slack-channel/

Slack is widely used by DevOps and development teams to communicate status. Typically, when a build has been tested and is ready to be promoted to a staging environment, a QA engineer or DevOps engineer kicks off the deployment. Using Slack in a ChatOps collaboration model, the promotion can be done in a single click from a Slack channel. And because the promotion happens through a Slack channel, the whole development team knows what’s happening without checking email.

In this blog post, I will show you how to integrate AWS services with a Slack application. I use an interactive message button and incoming webhook to promote a stage with a single click.

To follow along with the steps in this post, you’ll need a pipeline in AWS CodePipeline. If you don’t have a pipeline, the fastest way to create one for this use case is to use AWS CodeStar. Go to the AWS CodeStar console and select the Static Website template (shown in the screenshot). AWS CodeStar will create a pipeline with an AWS CodeCommit repository and an AWS CodeDeploy deployment for you. After the pipeline is created, you will need to add a manual approval stage.

You’ll also need to build a Slack app with webhooks and interactive components, write two Lambda functions, and create an API Gateway API and a SNS topic.

As you’ll see in the following diagram, when I make a change and merge a new feature into the master branch in AWS CodeCommit, the check-in kicks off my CI/CD pipeline in AWS CodePipeline. When CodePipeline reaches the approval stage, it sends a notification to Amazon SNS, which triggers an AWS Lambda function (ApprovalRequester).

The Slack channel receives a prompt that looks like the following screenshot. When I click Yes to approve the build promotion, the approval result is sent to CodePipeline through API Gateway and Lambda (ApprovalHandler). The pipeline continues on to deploy the build to the next environment.

Create a Slack app

For App Name, type a name for your app. For Development Slack Workspace, choose the name of your workspace. You’ll see in the following screenshot that my workspace is AWS ChatOps.

After the Slack application has been created, you will see the Basic Information page, where you can create incoming webhooks and enable interactive components.

To add incoming webhooks:

  1. Under Add features and functionality, choose Incoming Webhooks. Turn the feature on by selecting Off, as shown in the following screenshot.
  2. Now that the feature is turned on, choose Add New Webhook to Workspace. In the process of creating the webhook, Slack lets you choose the channel where messages will be posted.
  3. After the webhook has been created, you’ll see its URL. You will use this URL when you create the Lambda function.

If you followed the steps in the post, the pipeline should look like the following.

Write the Lambda function for approval requests

This Lambda function is invoked by the SNS notification. It sends a request that consists of an interactive message button to the incoming webhook you created earlier.  The following sample code sends the request to the incoming webhook. WEBHOOK_URL and SLACK_CHANNEL are the environment variables that hold values of the webhook URL that you created and the Slack channel where you want the interactive message button to appear.

# This function is invoked via SNS when the CodePipeline manual approval action starts.
# It will take the details from this approval notification and sent an interactive message to Slack that allows users to approve or cancel the deployment.

import os
import json
import logging
import urllib.parse

from base64 import b64decode
from urllib.request import Request, urlopen
from urllib.error import URLError, HTTPError

# This is passed as a plain-text environment variable for ease of demonstration.
# Consider encrypting the value with KMS or use an encrypted parameter in Parameter Store for production deployments.

logger = logging.getLogger()

def lambda_handler(event, context):
    print("Received event: " + json.dumps(event, indent=2))
    message = event["Records"][0]["Sns"]["Message"]
    data = json.loads(message) 
    token = data["approval"]["token"]
    codepipeline_name = data["approval"]["pipelineName"]
    slack_message = {
        "channel": SLACK_CHANNEL,
        "text": "Would you like to promote the build to production?",
        "attachments": [
                "text": "Yes to deploy your build to production",
                "fallback": "You are unable to promote a build",
                "callback_id": "wopr_game",
                "color": "#3AA3E3",
                "attachment_type": "default",
                "actions": [
                        "name": "deployment",
                        "text": "Yes",
                        "style": "danger",
                        "type": "button",
                        "value": json.dumps({"approve": True, "codePipelineToken": token, "codePipelineName": codepipeline_name}),
                        "confirm": {
                            "title": "Are you sure?",
                            "text": "This will deploy the build to production",
                            "ok_text": "Yes",
                            "dismiss_text": "No"
                        "name": "deployment",
                        "text": "No",
                        "type": "button",
                        "value": json.dumps({"approve": False, "codePipelineToken": token, "codePipelineName": codepipeline_name})

    req = Request(SLACK_WEBHOOK_URL, json.dumps(slack_message).encode('utf-8'))

    response = urlopen(req)
    return None


Create a SNS topic

Create a topic and then create a subscription that invokes the ApprovalRequester Lambda function. You can configure the manual approval action in the pipeline to send a message to this SNS topic when an approval action is required. When the pipeline reaches the approval stage, it sends a notification to this SNS topic. SNS publishes a notification to all of the subscribed endpoints. In this case, the Lambda function is the endpoint. Therefore, it invokes and executes the Lambda function. For information about how to create a SNS topic, see Create a Topic in the Amazon SNS Developer Guide.

Write the Lambda function for handling the interactive message button

This Lambda function is invoked by API Gateway. It receives the result of the interactive message button whether or not the build promotion was approved. If approved, an API call is made to CodePipeline to promote the build to the next environment. If not approved, the pipeline stops and does not move to the next stage.

The Lambda function code might look like the following. SLACK_VERIFICATION_TOKEN is the environment variable that contains your Slack verification token. You can find your verification token under Basic Information on Slack manage app page. When you scroll down, you will see App Credential. Verification token is found under the section.

# This function is triggered via API Gateway when a user acts on the Slack interactive message sent by approval_requester.py.

from urllib.parse import parse_qs
import json
import os
import boto3


#Triggered by API Gateway
#It kicks off a particular CodePipeline project
def lambda_handler(event, context):
	#print("Received event: " + json.dumps(event, indent=2))
	body = parse_qs(event['body'])
	payload = json.loads(body['payload'][0])

	# Validate Slack token
	if SLACK_VERIFICATION_TOKEN == payload['token']:
		# This will replace the interactive message with a simple text response.
		# You can implement a more complex message update if you would like.
		return  {
			"isBase64Encoded": "false",
			"statusCode": 200,
			"body": "{\"text\": \"The approval has been processed\"}"
		return  {
			"isBase64Encoded": "false",
			"statusCode": 403,
			"body": "{\"error\": \"This request does not include a vailid verification token.\"}"

def send_slack_message(action_details):
	codepipeline_status = "Approved" if action_details["approve"] else "Rejected"
	codepipeline_name = action_details["codePipelineName"]
	token = action_details["codePipelineToken"] 

	client = boto3.client('codepipeline')
	response_approval = client.put_approval_result(


Create the API Gateway API

  1. In the Amazon API Gateway console, create a resource called InteractiveMessageHandler.
  2. Create a POST method.
    • For Integration type, choose Lambda Function.
    • Select Use Lambda Proxy integration.
    • From Lambda Region, choose a region.
    • In Lambda Function, type a name for your function.
  3.  Deploy to a stage.

For more information, see Getting Started with Amazon API Gateway in the Amazon API Developer Guide.

Now go back to your Slack application and enable interactive components.

To enable interactive components for the interactive message (Yes) button:

  1. Under Features, choose Interactive Components.
  2. Choose Enable Interactive Components.
  3. Type a request URL in the text box. Use the invoke URL in Amazon API Gateway that will be called when the approval button is clicked.

Now that all the pieces have been created, run the solution by checking in a code change to your CodeCommit repo. That will release the change through CodePipeline. When the CodePipeline comes to the approval stage, it will prompt to your Slack channel to see if you want to promote the build to your staging or production environment. Choose Yes and then see if your change was deployed to the environment.


That is it! You have now created a Slack ChatOps solution using AWS CodeCommit, AWS CodePipeline, AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, and Amazon Simple Notification Service.

Now that you know how to do this Slack and CodePipeline integration, you can use the same method to interact with other AWS services using API Gateway and Lambda. You can also use Slack’s slash command to initiate an action from a Slack channel, rather than responding in the way demonstrated in this post.

CI/CD with Data: Enabling Data Portability in a Software Delivery Pipeline with AWS Developer Tools, Kubernetes, and Portworx

Post Syndicated from Kausalya Rani Krishna Samy original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/devops/cicd-with-data-enabling-data-portability-in-a-software-delivery-pipeline-with-aws-developer-tools-kubernetes-and-portworx/

This post is written by Eric Han – Vice President of Product Management Portworx and Asif Khan – Solutions Architect

Data is the soul of an application. As containers make it easier to package and deploy applications faster, testing plays an even more important role in the reliable delivery of software. Given that all applications have data, development teams want a way to reliably control, move, and test using real application data or, at times, obfuscated data.

For many teams, moving application data through a CI/CD pipeline, while honoring compliance and maintaining separation of concerns, has been a manual task that doesn’t scale. At best, it is limited to a few applications, and is not portable across environments. The goal should be to make running and testing stateful containers (think databases and message buses where operations are tracked) as easy as with stateless (such as with web front ends where they are often not).

Why is state important in testing scenarios? One reason is that many bugs manifest only when code is tested against real data. For example, we might simply want to test a database schema upgrade but a small synthetic dataset does not exercise the critical, finer corner cases in complex business logic. If we want true end-to-end testing, we need to be able to easily manage our data or state.

In this blog post, we define a CI/CD pipeline reference architecture that can automate data movement between applications. We also provide the steps to follow to configure the CI/CD pipeline.


Stateful Pipelines: Need for Portable Volumes

As part of continuous integration, testing, and deployment, a team may need to reproduce a bug found in production against a staging setup. Here, the hosting environment is comprised of a cluster with Kubernetes as the scheduler and Portworx for persistent volumes. The testing workflow is then automated by AWS CodeCommit, AWS CodePipeline, and AWS CodeBuild.

Portworx offers Kubernetes storage that can be used to make persistent volumes portable between AWS environments and pipelines. The addition of Portworx to the AWS Developer Tools continuous deployment for Kubernetes reference architecture adds persistent storage and storage orchestration to a Kubernetes cluster. The example uses MongoDB as the demonstration of a stateful application. In practice, the workflow applies to any containerized application such as Cassandra, MySQL, Kafka, and Elasticsearch.

Using the reference architecture, a developer calls CodePipeline to trigger a snapshot of the running production MongoDB database. Portworx then creates a block-based, writable snapshot of the MongoDB volume. Meanwhile, the production MongoDB database continues serving end users and is uninterrupted.

Without the Portworx integrations, a manual process would require an application-level backup of the database instance that is outside of the CI/CD process. For larger databases, this could take hours and impact production. The use of block-based snapshots follows best practices for resilient and non-disruptive backups.

As part of the workflow, CodePipeline deploys a new MongoDB instance for staging onto the Kubernetes cluster and mounts the second Portworx volume that has the data from production. CodePipeline triggers the snapshot of a Portworx volume through an AWS Lambda function, as shown here




AWS Developer Tools with Kubernetes: Integrated Workflow with Portworx

In the following workflow, a developer is testing changes to a containerized application that calls on MongoDB. The tests are performed against a staging instance of MongoDB. The same workflow applies if changes were on the server side. The original production deployment is scheduled as a Kubernetes deployment object and uses Portworx as the storage for the persistent volume.

The continuous deployment pipeline runs as follows:

  • Developers integrate bug fix changes into a main development branch that gets merged into a CodeCommit master branch.
  • Amazon CloudWatch triggers the pipeline when code is merged into a master branch of an AWS CodeCommit repository.
  • AWS CodePipeline sends the new revision to AWS CodeBuild, which builds a Docker container image with the build ID.
  • AWS CodeBuild pushes the new Docker container image tagged with the build ID to an Amazon ECR registry.
  • Kubernetes downloads the new container (for the database client) from Amazon ECR and deploys the application (as a pod) and staging MongoDB instance (as a deployment object).
  • AWS CodePipeline, through a Lambda function, calls Portworx to snapshot the production MongoDB and deploy a staging instance of MongoDB• Portworx provides a snapshot of the production instance as the persistent storage of the staging MongoDB
    • The MongoDB instance mounts the snapshot.

At this point, the staging setup mimics a production environment. Teams can run integration and full end-to-end tests, using partner tooling, without impacting production workloads. The full pipeline is shown here.



This reference architecture showcases how development teams can easily move data between production and staging for the purposes of testing. Instead of taking application-specific manual steps, all operations in this CodePipeline architecture are automated and tracked as part of the CI/CD process.

This integrated experience is part of making stateful containers as easy as stateless. With AWS CodePipeline for CI/CD process, developers can easily deploy stateful containers onto a Kubernetes cluster with Portworx storage and automate data movement within their process.

The reference architecture and code are available on GitHub:

● Reference architecture: https://github.com/portworx/aws-kube-codesuite
● Lambda function source code for Portworx additions: https://github.com/portworx/aws-kube-codesuite/blob/master/src/kube-lambda.py

For more information about persistent storage for containers, visit the Portworx website. For more information about Code Pipeline, see the AWS CodePipeline User Guide.