The Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) was launched in 2009, although almost as soon as users started adopting the PaaS, complaints started flooding in from users about the lack of functionality for on/off scheduling. Rather than paying for the service when it was required for development and testing purposes, RDS had to run continuously, with enterprises incurring considerable and unnecessary costs.
It took until June 2017 for Amazon to introduce the option of RDS start/stop scheduling for database instances. Now, when databases are stopped, users are only charged for storage, manual snapshots, and storage used for automated backups. There is no charge for database instance hours. This offers a considerable saving to users and it makes the service much more affordable.
Users can start and stop databases via the AWS Management Console with a few clicks, or with a single call using the AWS Command Line Interface or AWS API. RDS can be stopped for a period of up to 7 days, after which time, the service will be automatically restarted.
Since this additional functionality was introduced, users have been developing scripts and other tools to automate the process of starting and stopping RDS instances, although writing scripts can be hugely complex. Since RDS is rarely used without also running EC2 instances, scripts also need to schedule EC2 instances. The process is complicated, as often multiple RDS and EC2 instances are often run in a QA environment. All of those instances need to be started and stopped simultaneously or in a specific order.
In cases where RDA databases relate to dev, QA, staging, production, test, and UAT, different users usually require access to different databases, at different times, depending on their workflows. User governance must therefore also be integrated into scripts. When RDS databases are used at different locations around the world, RDS start/stop scheduling for database instances is even more of a challenge.
ParkMyCloud Launches AWS Start/Stop Scheduler
Developing an enterprise-grade AWS RDS start/stop scheduler from scratch is a complex and time-consuming process that presents many challenges.
However, ParkMyCloud offers a solution that makes the process of turning off RDA instances a simple process with a new AWS Start/Stop Scheduler. No scripts are required, and all the headaches associated with the process are eliminated.
ParkMyCloud supports EC2 parking and includes Auto Scaling Groups that can be accessed from the same interface and used to quickly implement on/off scheduling for all cloud resources. When multiple instances need to be scheduled, logical groups tie all of the resources together, allowing each to be started and stopped in the correct order. ParkMyCloud also incorporates the functionally to split the user base into teams, only showing users the RDS databases that they have been provided with access to.
ParkMyCloud has also solved the problem of on/off scheduling for devops processes, providing multiple options for automation, including the option of basing scheduling on tags, names, and locations. It is also possible to override schedules and toggle instances from load testing apps, CI/CD tools, and slack channels when database instances need to be powered on briefly.
The ParkMyCloud service lets organizations achieve huge cost savings on RDS and other PaaS services, without the hassle associated with developing scripts to automate the on/off scheduling process.