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Create an Amazon Aurora from Scratch

November 23, 2020

Introduction

This article describes how to create an Amazon Aurora instance from zero using the AWS console configuring the properties required to obtain a functional database instance.

Objective

Create an Amazon Aurora instance from scratch on Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Pre-requisite

  • You need an AWS account
  • Basic knowledge of AWS services

Steps to create an Amazon Aurora Instance

Before starting, consider the following points:

  • We will use the default VPC, so we don’t need to set up one
  • Following the best practices, the Amazon Aurora instance must not be publicly accessible, but for the purposes of this article it will be created public for practicality

1. Database Creation Method and Engine Options

Go to AWS console and navigate to RDS (you can also type in “Aurora”) service, from the left panel select the “Databases” option and tap on the “Create database” button, then the create database page should be displayed. Leave the “Standard Create” option chosen and select Amazon Aurora as the engine.

For the edition of Amazon Aurora, you can choose between MySQL or PostgreSQL compatibility (for this example we will be using MySQL). For the engine version, we will work with Aurora (MySQL)-5.6.10a but if you need a specific version for compatibility reasons feel free to change it. For database location you can choose between Regional (you provision your Aurora database in a single AWS Region) and Global (You can provision your Aurora database in multiple AWS Regions), we recommend being specific to reduce costs for this article.

2. Database Features

Here you have four options to choose from:

  • One writer and multiple readers: Supports multiple reader instances connected to the same storage volume as a single writer instance
  • One writer and multiple readers – Parallel query: Improves the performance of analytic queries by pushing processing down to the Aurora storage layer
  • Multiple writers: Supports multiple writer instances connected to the same storage volume
  • Serverless: You specify the minimum and maximum amount of resources needed, and Aurora scales the capacity based on database load. Choose the option that suits you best (In this example we will use one writer and multiple readers)

3. Template

Here you choose if your instance is for the Production environment or for Dev/Test. Note: This will only appear if you previously selected “One writer and multiple readers”, otherwise jump to point 4. Settings.

4. Settings

Specify the following properties:

  • DB instance identifier: Set name to identify the DB instance
  • Master username: A username that will be used to connect to the DB instance
  • Auto-generate a password: Disable the option
  • Master password: Choose a password to the user-specified above
  • Confirm password: Retype the password

5. DB Instance Size

Here you choose the instance class that meets your processing power and memory requirements. In this example, we will use db.t2.small.

6. Availability & durability

The “Multi-AZ deployment” options helps to maintain a synchronous standby replica in a different Availability Zone, nevertheless, for the purpose of this article we will select "Don’t create an Aurora Replica".

7. Connectivity

In the “Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)” choose the Default VPC and drop down “Additional connectivity configuration” options:

  • Subnet group: The DB subnet group for the VPC, select the Default option
  • Publicly accessible: Choose “Yes”
  • VPC security groups: Create a new VPC security group
  • New VPC security group name: Choose a name to identify the new security group
  • Availability zone: Select “No Preference”
  • Database port: The port that will be used for connection to the DB. Leave in the default value “3306”

8. Additional Configuration

Here you can change some additional configurations such as:

  • Database options
  • Backup
  • Encryption
  • Backtrack
  • Performance Insights
  • Monitoring
  • Log Exports
  • Maintenance
  • Deletion Protection

9. Create Database

Once you are satisfied with the instance configuration click on “Create Database”. You will be redirected to the database page and you will see that your database is being created. After a few minutes, you will have your Amazon Aurora instance up and ready.

Now is possible to connect to the Aurora cluster using the generated endpoint.

If you wish to connect directly to an instance, choose it and the endoint will be displayed.

Conclusion

In this article, we show how to create an Amazon Aurora instance from scratch in AWS, where we have great advantages of a fully managed service such as automatic backups, security, performance, high availability, vertical and/or horizontal scaling. In addition, Amazon Aurora is up to five times faster than standard MySQL databases and three times faster than standard PostgreSQL databases making it the best choice for many use cases. In a future post, we will talk about how to secure your Aurora database instance following the Well-Architected Framework and security best practices.

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