re:Invent 2020 wrap-up: Partner Keynote (and more)

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Unlike with Andy Jassy’s keynote, I wasn’t up to waking at 2:30 to watch the partner keynote, and instead resolved to watch one of the replays, with the hope that there would be fewer spoilers. Even though this was a primarily partner-focused presentation, there are some significant announcements that will benefit both partners and direct customers alike, and I wanted to cover them here. I haven’t covered the partner-specific announcements, as they’re more of a directed audience.

Since there have also been a number of additional technical feature and service releases since yesterday (!), I’ve included them at the bottom of this post.

AWS SaaS Boost

Building on top of the partner SaaS Competency, AWS want to enable all customer to build SaaS offerings faster and with greater confidence, and to transition traditional web application offerings into a SaaS model. It comes as an open-source reference environment. framework and tools, from the SaaS Factory team and includes an application configurator, multi-tenant manager, analytics and metrics dashboard, and admin and user management UI for on-boarding and administering customers.

You can request access to the SaaS Boost preview at https://aws.amazon.com/partners/saas-boost/

Managed Entitlements for AWS Marketplace

If managing licenses is your job, and it sounds like not a lot of fun (and, really, it never is) then this will be interesting for you. It’s a process within Marketplace that allows you to simplify and automate your license tracking. It works across AWS accounts, using AWS License Manager, and is available effective immediately for over 7,000 products available within Marketplace. It also allows ISVs to track licenses and entitlements for use within AWS and on-premises.

In addition, License Manager gets the ability to use tag-based searches with its existing automated discovery feature, and can also detect uninstallation of licensed software to return licenses to the pool without the need for human intervention.

Private Marketplace APIs

Private Marketplace allows you to set up an internal view of the AWS Marketplace for purchasing software (and now professional services, see below) that comply with internal governance and controls. This enables people within an organisation to select from a set of pre-approved offerings, which streamlines the usual approval/procurement process. This release adds APIs to Private Marketplace which allow programmatic management, either by customers directly or by Consulting Partners who manage AWS accounts on behalf of a customer.

Service Catalog AppRegistry

If you’ve wanted a way to provide standardised application deployments via templated infrastructure and automation, but haven’t known where to start, then you could do worse than to take a look at the new AWS Service Catalog AppRegistry. Based on groups of CloudFormation stacks with customer-defined attribute metadata, AppRegistry allows you to manage and automate the rollout and update of deployed application versions across multiple environments with centralised control and visibility. This gives IT and business stakeholders up-to-date information on their applications, such as organisational ownership, data sensitivity, and cost centre.

Professional Services in AWS Marketplace

You can now buy services from consulting partners and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) directly within AWS Marketplace, as well as the software they provide. The vendor can customise pricing, payment schedule, and payment terms. Suppliers can quote, provision, provide, and manage their offerings using this capability. There are over 100 suppliers already available with this offering at launch. The goal here is to make it easier to find and buy professional services for AWS customers.

Updates to the Well-Architected Framework and Tool

Many organisations use the AWS Well-Architected Framework to assess the health, maintainability, operability, and fitness for purpose of their workloads and organisation as a whole; it’s a great way to identify opportunities for improvement (which, by the way, Cevo is certified to help you with should you want an independent assessment). Today, Well-Architected adds another two “lenses”: the SaaS lens, and the Foundational Technical Review lens.

The SaaS lens is aimed at asking questions tailored to SaaS workloads, with the intent of driving critical thinking for developing and operating SaaS-specific services.

The Foundational Technical Review lens used to be known as a Technical Baseline Review, and is actually aimed at AWS Partners who provide product offerings in the AWS ecosystem. The FTR lens can assist partners in preparing for the Foundational Technical Review in advance of the Partner Solution Architect assessment.

As an AWS Well-Architected Partner, Cevo can assist you in conducting a review. If we’re then able to help remediate 25 percent of discovered high risk findings, you may qualify for AWS Promotional Credits.

Additional Technical Releases

AWS Batch support for Fargate

Lambda is sexy, Step Functions are sexy, containers are sexy, and now good old batch processing can be sexy too with the addition of support for Fargate containers to AWS Batch, which now means that even batch jobs that involve long-running tasks (beyond the 15 minute limit of Lambda) can be completely serverless end-to-end.

Compute Optimizer support for EBS volumes

EC2 Compute Optimizer is great for providing advice on whether you should scale your EC2 instances up or down to maximise your return on investment; now, it adds support for recommendations to your EC2-attached storage as well, so you can find even more savings and efficiencies in your compute infrastructure.

 

That’s All, Folks (for today)

Thanks for reading, if you’ve made it this far. re:Invent is a fast-moving time with lots of new releases, options to consume and digest, and opportunities to improve how your business makes use of technology. There are a lot of decisions to make about what to use, and how, and the flood of novelty will continue for the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned for more posts about new announcements following the later keynotes, and followup articles about specific services and features as we bend them to our will.

 

Remember, if you’re feeling overwhelmed by this tsunami of tech, Cevo is here to help: we can assist you with DevOps (both in the technical and tooling sense, and in the business transformation sense); workload migration to AWS; cloud-native application development; and data services and insights too. Hit us up!