AWS Link Schmorgasboard

This is a compilation of links I (rICh morrow) have found in my travels. I share this with students of the AWS courses I teach with Global Knowledge and other training providers.
DISCLAIMER: This document is not a part of any official AWS Certified Training.
Please contact me at if there's anything you'd like to add or change (eg: broken or out of date links).
Happy Hacking!

Helpful Class Links

Student Errata
My GK page direct link
MyGK Setup
MyGK Course Prep
Bookshelf App Download direct link (use to view your Gilmore materials offline)

AWS Certification

Amazon's entry page to all certifications
CloudAcademy (great test-your-knowledge questions for exam prep)
Good info on general best practices for tests of any type

Global Knowledge Assets

MyGK Setup
GK Blog
GK Professional Edge (over 40 short courses, white papers, etc)
Global Knowledge Tech Support ( Global Knowledge 2017 Salary Survey (AWS Solutions Architect [Associate] Certification clocks in at #3 with starting salary of about $125K)

Rich Morrow Assets

Rich's LinkedIn page (TONS of great articles in there) -- available for consulting (writing, speaking, training, development, operations, advisement)
"Training Opportunities" talk from re:Invent 2016 (great history of AWS training, GK, and rich's involvement)
Link to all of Rich's classes on O'Reilly

Getting up to speed on General AWS

"Nine must-view AWS presentations"
AWS Free Usage Tier
Security Center
Service Documentation
AWS SlideShare page Insanely useful, frequently updated palette of slides
Harish Ganesan's Blog (great practical info)
FREE AWS Kindle books
AWS Masterclass series
AWS in Plain English
AWS Unified CLI (your #1 tool for interacting with AWS)
aws-shell utility Tab complete for AWS commands
Using Putty in the lab (Note: customers on Windows can also use Git BASH, or in Win10, use the Ubuntu shell)

Keeping up to speed on AWS

"What's New" page
AWS Blog by Jeff Barr
AWS Podcasts
AWS YouTube Channel
AWS Term Glossary


Backup and Disaster Recovery

DR Whitepaper

Whitepapers / Case Studies - good patterns for various AWS use cases
White Papers
Architecture Center
Architecture Icon sets
AWS Security Process
AWS Solutions Case Studies
AWS DDM Studies (play by play app builds & optimizations)
Microsoft SharePoint reference architecture

Pricing Calculators

Online Pricing Calculator
TCO Comparison Calculator

Global Infrastructure

AWS Regions, Availability Zones, and Edge Locations Prezi

AWS Video Course

rICh's 5 hour AWS course for just $50 Many videos free for preview

Visual Cloud Management Tools

Visual Ops (lets you create CF templates from Arch diagrams

Alternate Consoles

Elastic Wolf
AWS Toolkit for Eclipse

Use Cases / Add Ons

Netflix Open Source Software (OSS) Center


Amazon Web Services Support
Trusted Advisor


Analysis of recent AWS outages
Google Cloud Storage bug (catastrophic)

AWS vs Private Datacenters

GigaOM webinar comparing when / where to use your own Datacenter

How AWS came into being

The Everything Store by Brad Stone -- fascinating look at the people & history of & AWS
AWS Andy Jassy @ Harvard - the AWS story
Bezos' "Big Mandate"
Fascinating look under the covers from an Ex AWS engineer

Big Data / Hadoop

Global Knowledge Course catalog for Cloudera Certified Training
Compendium of links for Global Knowledge's Cloudera Classes
New Spark interface (Beta) for HUE
Intro to Spark webinar by Sujee Maniyam

What the @&^$ is NoSQL, exactly?

NoSQL Distilled (Distilled)

PaaS solutions / making your apps cloud agnostic

OutSystems is a great way to build, deploy and manage your apps across multiple cloud providers
WSO2 -- "lean enterprise middleware"
Rogue Wave is a cross-platform set of software dev tools which also performs both static & dynamic code verification
Workboard is a tool for collaborative, distributed development
Apache Stratos -- an Open PaaS framework

Continuous Integration / Continuous Deployment (CI/CD)

WSO2 -- "lean enterprise middleware"

Docker & Containerization (LXC)

Contaiers & the evolution of the Cloud

Security & Compliance

AWS Compliance docs
Department of Defense Cloud Security Model
Decent list of some Penetration Testing toolkits
US Gov Cloud Differences
Hacker puts hosting firm out of business (lesson on key management & rotation)
"nine killer AWS Security Presentations"

AWS Class Assets

Architecture v5.0 Class Assets

AWS Well Architected Framework whitepaper
Architecting for the Cloud (AWS Best Practices) whitepaper

Advanced Architecture Class Assets

Black Belt Networking for the Cloud Ninja (Steve Morad @ AWS)
Performance Tuning Amazon EC2 Instances (Brendan Gregg @ Netflix)
Building a DDOS-resilient Architecture with AWS (Andrew Kiggins)
Deck and labs errata
Autoscaled NAT HA
Another take on NAT instance HA
Direct Connect Demo
Data Pipeline Demo
BGP Basics
ASN Basics
Networking Deep Dive (re:Invent video)
Best practices for migrating from RDS to DynamoDB whitepaper
AWS case study:Dash
Donut Caching (mmm... donuts)
Blue/Green Deployments
Gaming DevOps with Scopely (re:Invent video)
Tomcat Session state manager for DynamoDB
Setting JVM TTL for DNS record caching
Scaling vs Cost at Electronic Arts (re:Invent video)
7 layer OSI model
Digital Attack Map
Circuit Breaker pattern
Stability patterns & anti-patterns
Extreme availability for mission-critical apps (re:Invent video)
Fault injection and service reliability (re:Invent video)
10 ways to avoid costly PCI compliance violations
Navigating PCI compliance in the cloud (re:Invent video)
PCI compliance FAQs
AWS Case Study: Cognia (PCI compliance)
Understanding hash functions & keeping passwords safe
MD5 hash tutorial
SHA1 hash tutorial
GCM and GMAC authenticated encryption algorithms
Securing data at rest with encryption
AWS: Overview of security processes
Free coursera course on cryptography
Moving big data in the cloud with Tsunami UDP
AWS Infrastructure behind the Obama for America Campaign
AWS Case study: Obama for America Campaign
Lab #3 instructions

Final Group project (choose one)

SavePaperSuite (content mgmt)
ShopAtGoGreen System workflow (SOA)
GoGreenGaming (gaming)
GoGreenAnalytics (big data)
Student Q+A

System Operations Class Assets

Student Errata

Advanced Ops Class Assets

Lab #1 Challenge exercise sample code (
Kobi Biton Assets (
# gem installs v1 of the SDK (which uses AWS:: rather than v2 which uses Aws:: calls). The V2 that's installed results in "uninitialized constant AWS" errors.
# perl pie does search+replace of "aws-sdk" with "aws-sdk-v1"
gem install aws-sdk-v1
perl -p -i -e 's/aws-sdk/aws-sdk-v1/' `find . -type f -name '*.rb'`

export AMM_LOG_JOBFLOW=`aws emr create-cluster --visible-to-all-users --instance-count 1 --instance-type m1.large --ami-version 2.3 --applications Name=Hive --ec2-attributes KeyName=$AMM_KEY_NAME --no-auto-terminate --output text | cut -d ' ' -f 2`
4.15.3 (have your users scp their qwiklabXXX.pem file up to the operations instance, then):
aws emr ssh --cluster-id $AMM_LOG_JOBFLOW --key-pair-file [path to your local private 'qwiklabXXX.pem' file]

Developing on AWS Class Assets / Notes

Identity Federation Slides
Link to download Visual Studio (choose "Enterprise Trial")
Java 7 SDK download (choose appropriate platform for "Java SE Development Kit 7u67")
Eclipse Kepler downloads (choose "Eclipse IDE for Java and DSL Developers")
Java SDK Docs API Reference
.NET SDK Docs API Reference
NOTE! When setting up Tomcat on the Mac to run locally (lab 5.1), Mac users may need to install the JST plugin in order to "Run on Server". In Eclipse, go to "Help"->"Install new software"->pick "Kepler"->type in "JST". You'll have to install the server adapters & server adapter extensions. YouTube vid of installing Tomcat 7 on OSX

Lab 4.1 IAM policy

"Statement": [
"Action": [
"Effect": "Allow",
"Resource": "*"

Big Data Assets/Notes

Big Data Test Drive (SAS, Tableau and other solutions -- all available for free trial)

Deep Learning Assets/Notes

Siraj's "Comparison of ML Frameworks" Remember Siraj, watch his videos, worship him! The HAIR!!!
TensorFlow Playground Lets you visualize the data and flow through a NN.
Guide to Understanding Convolutional Neural Networks
EXCELLENT description of NNs with no math! Part of a multi-part series on NNs from a guy who is stellar at relaying complex info
Overview of Convolutional Networks
Overview of Activation Functions
Walthrough of Pooling Layers Part of an excellent data science course taught by Andrew Ng at Coursera.

C2S / GovCloud

Rapid prototyping
C2S: What's next
GovCloud deep dive into compliance

All Classes

Why you should "read ahead" in the labs
Bookshelf App Download direct link (use to view your Gilmore materials offline)
Qwiklab direct link
My GK page direct link
Alexa Commercial