At re:Invent, AWS also announced enhancements that make databases safer and more secure and simplify upgrades and migrations.
This includes Trusted Language Extensions for PostgreSQL, a new open-source development kit and project for building PostgreSQL extensions. PostgreSQL is highly popular among developers for its data type support, stability, and large library of extensions. The use of extensions, however, comes with its own risks. Often these open-source extensions rely on other open-source components resulting in a complex dependency tree. There is plenty of opportunity for intended infiltrations or unintended issues, so the best practice is to test and certify extensions.
While Trusted Language Extensions protect the core of PostgreSQL, Amazon GuardDuty RDS Protection protects the perimeter. GuardDuty RDS Protection is initially available as a public preview for Amazon Aurora with a plan for a production release and coverage for the other RDS database engines. GuardDuty protects the data in Aurora databases by identifying suspicious login attempts that can lead to data exfiltration and ransomware attacks. GuardDuty sends intrusion alerts and aids in the management of stolen credentials. Investigation of potential intrusions is aided by contextual information, as well as machine learning.
AWS also added Amazon RDS Blue/Green Deployments, an advanced operational technique that makes database updates and upgrades more efficient and less disruptive. Previously, making updates to databases—such as security patches, major version upgrades and schema modifications—required significant time and resources to execute while minimizing downtime. This required creation of staging environments that required time, advanced operational knowledge, and careful planning. Amazon RDS Blue/Green Deployments provides managed staging environments capable of updating databases in less than a minute with zero data loss.
The first operational challenge organizations face has to do with migration of their database to the cloud. AWS Data Migration Service (DMS) is a highly popular tool that has now been used for more than 800K+ database migrations. Previously a separate schema conversion tool was needed for mapping the data at the source database to the target database. Now the schema conversion is integrated with DMS making schema assessments and conversions much simpler. Heterogenous schema conversion can now be initiated with a few simple steps, reducing set up time from hours to minutes.
The Road Ahead
AWS’s announcements at re:Invent are its latest tranche of innovations. After 15 years of steady growth with its database offerings, AWS shows no signs of slowing down and intends to evolve the database world.
The full 2022 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Cloud DBMS report may be viewed here.