Serving a Static Website on AWS with Pulumi

Chris Smith Chris Smith

Hello! This post covers using Pulumi to create the infrastructure for serving a static website on AWS. The full source code for this example is available on GitHub.

Setting up the infrastructure to serve a static website doesn’t sound like it would be all that difficult, but when you consider HTTPS certificates, content distribution networks, and attaching it to a custom domain, integrating all the components can be quite daunting. 

Fortunately this is a task where Pulumi really shines. Pulumi’s code-centric approach not only makes configuring cloud resources easier to do and maintain, but it also eliminates the pain of integrating multiple products together.

This isn’t a hypothetical benefit of using the Pulumi programming model. We use a setup similar to the one described in this post for powering our own static websites, like www.pulumi.com and get.pulumi.com.

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Managing GitHub Webhooks with Pulumi

Matt Ellis Matt Ellis

At Pulumi, we do all of our development on GitHub, with a workflow built around topic branches. When a developer wants to make a change, they push a branch to GitHub, open a pull request and (in theory) once it’s merged, delete the branch. In practice, we’ll often forget to delete the topic branch (I’m probably the worst offender), which means we end up having topic branches linger on our main repository until they are explicitly cleaned up. While it’s a lot of fun to go a click through the GitHub UI from time to time, deleting merged branches, it’s even more fun to build automation to do this for us. Since GitHub has a rich set of webhooks and Pulumi makes it easy to write serverless functions, it felt like it would be natural to use Pulumi to write a hook that would clean up branches after a pull request got merged. In addition, Pulumi lets us leverage real programming languages to build abstractions, which means we can build a simple framework that hides much of the ceremony behind defining a hook and lets us focus on the core logic of our hook, without worrying about how it is deployed and managed.

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Using Pulumi with AWS SQS and Lambdas

Cyrus Najmabadi Cyrus Najmabadi

Two weeks ago Amazon added Simple Queue Service (SQS) as a supported event source for Lambda. SQS is one of AWS’s oldest services, providing access to a powerful message queue that can do things like guarantee messages will be delivered at least once, or messages that will be processed in the same order they were received in. Adding SQS as a supported event source for Lambda means that now it’s possible to use SQS in a serverless computing infrastructure, where Lambdas are triggered in response to messages added to your SQS queue. Now, instead of needing some sort of Service dedicated to polling your SQS queue, or creating Simple Notification Service (SNS) notifications from your messages, you can instead just directly trigger whatever Lambda you want.

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Build your first serverless app using only JavaScript

Marc Holmes Marc Holmes
Build your first serverless app using only JavaScript

In this tutorial, we’ll use Pulumi, to build a complete serverless application using JavaScript. When we say ‘using only JavaScript’, we’re not kidding:

  • write code just like an Express app… but end up with a fully deployable serverless app
  • lambdas are… just lambdas
  • no YAML required… freedom from indentation
  • all the features of the V8 runtime… async await ahoy
  • all the behaviors of immutable infrastructure as code tools… but we really mean ‘as code’

Pulumi also supports containers (including Kubernetes), managed services, infrastructure and everything else in between that you might need for building cloud applications. Better than that, you can even combine them all in the same program.

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How we use Pulumi to build Pulumi

Luke Hoban Luke Hoban
How we use Pulumi to build Pulumi

Here at Pulumi we are (perhaps unsurprisingly!) huge fans of using Pulumi to manage our cloud infrastructure and services. We author our infrastructure in strongly-typed programming languages, which allows us to to benefit from rich tooling - documenting and factoring our infrastructure using the same software engineering practices we apply to our application code. This also allows us to create reusable abstractions which accelerate our ability to deliver new features and services, and our ability to standardize and refactor infrastructure patterns across our services with relative ease. 

Like other users, we use Pulumi at a variety of levels of abstraction. We use Pulumi for raw infrastructure provisioning, defining the core networking layer for our AWS-based backend infrastructure. And we use Pulumi to define how our application services are deployed into ECS using just a few lines of code. Pulumi hosts and manages static content for www.pulumi.com and get.pulumi.com. We use Pulumi to define the CloudWatch dashboards connected to our infrastructure. And for monitoring, Pulumi defines metrics and notifications/alarms in PagerDuty and Slack.

Best of all, we’ve been able to take things we’ve learned from these use cases, and others we’ve worked with beta users on over the last few months (thank you!), and factor common patterns out into reusable libraries like @pulumi/aws-infra and @pulumi/cloud for ourselves and others to build upon.

In this post, we’ll do a deeper dive into each of these use cases, highlighting unique aspects of how we use Pulumi itself, and some of our engineering processes around how we integrate Pulumi into the rest of our toolchain.

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Build a Video Thumbnailer with Pulumi using Lambdas, Containers, and Infrastructure on AWS

Donna Malayeri Donna Malayeri
Build a Video Thumbnailer with Pulumi using Lambdas, Containers, and Infrastructure on AWS

Pulumi makes it easy to build cloud applications that use a combination of containers, lambdas, and connected data services and infrastructure: Colada apps. 

An example of a Colada app is extracting a thumbnail from a video. A serverless function can only run for 5 minutes, so we’ll run a container in AWS Fargate to do the video processing. 

In this app, a Lambda function is triggered whenever a new video is uploaded to S3. This function launches a task in Fargate that uses FFmpeg to extract a video thumbnail. A second Lambda function is triggered when a new thumbnail has been created. 

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Deploying production-ready containers with Pulumi

Donna Malayeri Donna Malayeri
Deploying production-ready containers with Pulumi

Containers are a great way to deploy applications to the cloud, especially with new execution models like AWS Fargate. Pulumi makes it easy to deploy production Docker containers, handling details such as creating a container registry instance in ECR, creating task definitions in ECS, and configuring a load balancer. With Pulumi, deploying a container to production is almost as easy as running it locally! In this blog post, we’ll deploy a simple Docker container running NGINX.

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