What Is Amazon ECS? (Cost, How It Works, and More)

Thomas Joseph
Do you need a simple solution to manage containerized applications in the cloud as a cloud developer? Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) is an AWS service enabling you to do just that. This post contains all you need to know before getting started with the service.

Table Of Contents

What Is Amazon ECS?

Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) is an AWS offering explicitly designed for efficient and scalable container management. If you are deploying containerized applications, Amazon ECS will enable you to quickly start, stop and manage the containers. With Amazon ECS, you do not have to configure the application's environment.

Developers with an AWS account can use API calls and task definitions to install and manage scalable apps that run on clusters. Moreover, you can gain access to the service and scale it to your specifications by using the AWS management dashboard and software development kits (SDKs).

This post simplifies the process of getting started with Amazon ECS, which can be daunting for those unfamiliar with cloud computing concepts.


A Rundown Of Amazon ECS

More and more cloud developers are adopting containerization thanks to the popularity of tools like Docker and Kubernetes. It is also due to the popularity of containerization that Amazon developed ECS. With Amazon ECS, developers can specify rules for isolated EC2 instances.

If you're using Amazon ECS, each task or subtask within a service will have its own container set, defined in a task specification. Services, in this sense, are cluster configurations that allow for the simultaneous execution and maintenance of a predetermined number of tasks. AWS Fargate provides a serverless platform on which you may deploy your applications and services.

Running your processes and services on a cluster of Amazon EC2 instances that you administer gives you greater control over your infrastructure.

Amazon Elastic Container Service makes it simple for developers to manage a wide range of projects, from single-container websites to those spanning thousands of containers. Because Amazon ECS tracks your environment's CPU and memory utilization, you can easily set the best parameters for your container.

Customers of Amazon Web Services (AWS) can utilize the service to upgrade containers and increase or decrease their size. For more flexibility, you can make use of AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) roles, Elastic Block Store (EBS) volumes, and Elastic Load Balancing (ELB) instances.


How Much Does Amazon ECS Cost?

ECS is available to AWS users at no extra cost. Users that choose the EC2 launch type are responsible for covering the costs of all EC2 instances, EBS volumes, and any other billable AWS resources utilized by the containerized application. Users who select Fargate as their launch type will incur costs proportional to the memory and CPU time their containers consume. The pricing structure for Amazon ECS on AWS Outposts is the same as that of the Amazon EC2 launch type.


How Amazon Elastic Container Service Works?

Using Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS), developers can define applications by importing the Docker images and other resources they need from Amazon Elastic Container Registry (ECR) or other repositories. After the ECS service consumes a container image, it composes the containers and their associated resources into an application.

The containers are deployed on EC2 or AWS Fargate after they have been assembled and the necessary services have been implemented. Once all that is done, Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) handles the scalability of the application and the availability of containers in a continuous fashion.

As a cloud developer, you can integrate ECS with other AWS services such as AWS SDKs, AWS CLI, Amazon EC2, and Amazon ECR.


What Features Does Amazon ECS Provide?

The following are some of the features you get with Amazon ECS.

With Amazon IAM, you can easily and securely control access to AWS resources. Each container can have its own set of permissions that you define. As a result, your application development can take place in complete secrecy. That is to say, you may deploy containers with the same high standards of safety and regulation compliance that you've come to expect from Amazon Web Services.

By utilizing container orchestration, much of the manual labor involved in managing containerized workloads and services may be eliminated. This encompasses a wide range of activities required by software teams to manage a container's lifecycle, such as provisioning, deployment, scaling (up and down), networking, load balancing, and more.

Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) is a managed service that incorporates AWS's recommended procedures for setting up and running containers. Because of this, you won't have to worry about the control plane, nodes, or extensions. It works with AWS and third-party solutions like Docker and the Amazon Elastic Container Registry.

DevOps teams should implement CI/CD. By taking the manual work out of the integration and delivery processes, CI/CD allows software development teams to put their attention where it belongs: on achieving business requirements and improving the quality and safety of their code.

You can use Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) to set up continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipelines to track changes in a repository, generate a new docker image from the source, and then deploy the image to Amazon ECS services.


Bottom Line

Amazon ECS is a must-have for every AWS developer who uses containers heavily in their work. In a nutshell, Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) makes it simple to manage a cluster of containers and run pause, and restart their processes. Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) does more than just manage containers; it also offers capabilities like simple integration with AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) and effortlessly managed container orchestration.

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