Amazon S3 – Simple Storage Service

Simple Storage Service also known as S3 is a Cloud Based Object Storage Service provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS). Amazon S3 is one of the main building blocks of AWS. Amazon S3 allows people to store files i.e. objects  in “buckets” . AWS S3 does not have a minimum fees, you just pay for what you use. We can store and get any amount of data, known as objects.

  • Amazon s3 is a highly available and durable object storage which can store virtually any type of data. (Images, Videos, text documents, backups and so on).
  • It is a global service; however, you can get the region-specific endpoint for faster access.
  • It gives any developer access to the same highly scalable, reliable, fast, inexpensive data storage infrastructure that Amazon uses to run its own global network of web sites.

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  • To get good understanding of Amazon S3, you need to understand a few core concepts. S3 stores data as objects within buckets. An object consists of a file and optionally metadata that describes the properties of that file.
  • To store an object into S3, you need to upload the file you want to store to a bucket. When you upload a file, you can set permissions on the object as well as any metadata.
  • Buckets are the containers for objects. You can have one or more buckets. For each bucket, you can control access to it (who can create, list, and delete objects from the bucket), view access logs for it and its objects, and choose the geographical region where  S3 will store the buckets and their contents.

Amazon S3 Overview – Buckets

A logical separation to store data. S3 allows people to store objects (files) in “buckets” (directories). Buckets must have a globally unique name as it has a universal namespace. Buckets are defined at the region level. You can access each bucket globally using a unique URL. While creating a bucket please use below Naming conventions:

  • Should not contain uppercase letter
  • Should not contain underscore
  • Should be 3-63 characters long
  • Should not contain IP Address
  • Must start with lowercase letter or number

Amazon S3 Overview – Objects

Each data stored in S3 is called an object. You can accessed objects via unique URL globally. S3 individual object can range in size from a minimum of 0 bytes to a maximum of 5 terabytes.

Amazon S3 Key Points

Below are the few key points of Amazon S3.

  • Pure Object Storage
  • Each individual object can range between 0 bytes to 5 Terabytes.
  • facilitates unlimited storage.
  • Files are stored in buckets or folders inside buckets.
  • It is a key value store. (key: name, value: data)
  • Each object contains a version ID.
  • Each object contains a metadata associated with it.
  • Amazon S3 provides 99.99% availability and 99.999999999 % of durability.
  • facilitates Life Cycle management for objects.
  • facilitates versioning of objects.
  • facilitates encryption of objects.
  • facilitates security using ACL’s and Bucket policies.
  • Amazon S3 Transfer Acceleration feature accelerates the speed of object creation and retrieval. In this scenario, you will be charged only if there is a performance improvement.

Create a Bucket

To create a bucket using the AWS Management Console, you need to sign up for Amazon S3. Every object in Amazon S3 is stored in buckets. Before storing data in Amazon S3, you must create a bucket. AWS doesn’t charge for creating a bucket. AWS charges only for storing objects in the bucket and for transferring objects in and out of the buckets. So let’s create a bucket using AWS management console:

To Create a bucket in Amazon s3, first sign in to the AWS Management Console and open the Amazon S3 console at https://console.aws.amazon.com/s3/.

Next, click on Create bucket.

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In first field, type a unique DNS-compliant name for the new bucket.

  • Bucket Name must be unique across all existing bucket names in Amazon S3.
  • After creating the bucket you cannot change the name.

For Region, choose the region where you want to place your bucket . Then click on create.

Note: If you want to copy settings from an existing bucket, then put the name of that bucket in the third field.

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Hence, you have created a bucket in Amazon S3.

By default, created bucket is not public. It is a private bucket. You can make it public if needed.

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Storage Classes

In bucket, Each object has associated with a storage class. There are multiple storage classes in Amazon S3.

  • S3 Standard
  • S3 Intelligent-Tiering
  • S3 Standard – IA ( Infrequently Access )
  • S3 One Zone – IA
  • S3 Glacier
  • S3 Glacier Deep Archive
  • Reduced Redundancy Storage (Not Recommended)

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S3 Storage Types and Classes

S3 Standard 

Amazon S3 Standard offers high durability, availability, and performance object storage for frequently accessed data. As it delivers low latency and high throughput, it is appropriate for multiple variety of use cases including content distribution, cloud applications, dynamic websites, mobile and gaming applications, and big data analytics.

  • Low latency and high throughput performance.
  • Designed for 99.99% availability over given year and 99.999999999% durability of objects across multiple AZs.
  • Resilient against events that impact an entire AZ (Availability Zone).
  • Supports SSL for data in transit and encryption of data at rest.
  • S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects to other S3 Storage Classes.
  • Backed with the Amazon S3 Service Level Agreement for availability.

S3 Intelligent-Tiering

S3 Intelligent-Tiering storage class is designed for cost optimization by automatically moving data to the most cost-effective access tier, without performance impact or operational overhead. It works by storing objects in two access tiers: one tier optimized for frequent access and another lower-cost tier optimized for infrequent access.

  • low latency and high throughput performance as S3 Standard
  • Small monthly monitoring and auto-tiering fee
  • Automatically moves objects between two access tiers based on changing access patterns
  • Designed for 99.9% availability over a given year and 99.999999999% durability of objects across multiple AZs
  • Resilient against events that impact an entire AZ
  • Supports SSL for data in transit and encryption of data at rest
  • S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects to other S3 Storage Classes

S3 Standard-Infrequent Access

S3 Standard-IA is for less frequently accessed data, but requires rapid access if needed. S3 Standard-IA offers high durability, high throughput, and low latency of S3 Standard, with a low per GB storage price and per GB retrieval fee.

  • Low latency and high throughput performance as S3 Standard
  • Designed for 99.9% availability over a given year and 99.999999999% durability of objects across multiple AZs.
  • Resilient against events that impact an entire AZ
  • Data is resilient in the event of one entire AZ destruction
  • Supports SSL for data in transit and encryption of data at rest
  • S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects to other S3 Storage Classes

S3 One Zone-Infrequent Access

S3 One Zone-IA is for less frequently accessed data, but requires rapid access when needed. Unlike other Amazon S3 Storage Classes that store data in a minimum of three Availability Zones (AZs), S3 One Zone-IA stores data in a single AZ and costs 20% less than S3 Standard-IA.

  • Low latency and high throughput performance as S3 Standard.
  • Designed for  99.999999999% durability of objects in a single AZ.
  • Designed for 99.5% availability over a given year.
  • Supports SSL for data in transit and encryption of data at rest.
  • S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects to other S3 Storage Classes.

Amazon S3 Glacier

Amazon S3 Glacier is a low-cost, durable and secure storage class for data archival. You can reliably store any amount of data at lower costs cheaper than on-premises solutions.

  • Designed for 99.999999999% durability of objects across multiple AZs
  • Data is resilient in the event of one entire AZ destruction
  • Low-cost design is ideal for long-term archive
  • Configurable retrieval times,  from minutes to hours
  • Supports SSL for data in transit and encryption of data at rest
  • S3 PUT API for direct uploads to S3 Glacier, and S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects

Amazon s3

Amazon S3 Glacier Deep Archives

S3 Glacier Deep Archive is lowest-cost storage class and supports long-term retention and digital preservation for data that may be accessed once or twice in a year.

  • Designed for 99.999999999% durability of objects across multiple AZs
  • Designed for Lowest cost storage class and long-term retention of data that will be retained for 7-10 years
  • Ideal alternative to magnetic tape libraries
  • Retrieval time within 12 hours
  • S3 PUT API for direct uploads to S3 Glacier Deep Archive
  • S3 Lifecycle management for automatic migration of objects

Reduced Redundancy Storage

Amazon S3 Reduced Redundancy Storage (RRS) is an Amazon S3 storage option that offers customers to store noncritical, reproducible data at lower levels of redundancy than Amazon S3’s Standard Storage. The RRS option stores objects on multiple devices across multiple facilities, providing 400 times the durability of a typical disk drive, but does not replicate objects as many times as standard Amazon S3 storage. This is not recommended by Amazon S3.

  • Designed to provide 99.99% durability and 99.99% availability of objects over a given year. This durability level corresponds to an average annual expected loss of 0.01% of objects.
  • Designed to sustain the loss of data in a single facility.

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Conclusion

Hence, you get better understanding of Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). In our upcoming article we will learn how to add an object to a bucket, view, move and delete an object and bucket.

See Also : Top 10 Shell Scripting Interview Questions with Answers

 

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Ravindra Kumar

Hi, This is Ravindra. I am founder of TheCodeCloud. I am AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate & Certified in Oracle Cloud as well. I am DevOps and Data Science Enthusiast.

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