What is Amazon Cloud Services?

What is Amazon Cloud Services? Branded as Amazon Web Services (AWS), it refers to a broad category of over 175 cloud-based products and services provided by Amazon, such as compute engine, storage, networking, database, security and so on. These services are made available on-demand on the AWS platform from various data centers world wide to companies, governments and individuals.

Examples of some of AWS services are

  • Amazon Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2)
  • Simple Storage Service called Amazon S3
  • Amazon Virtual Private Cloud or VPC
  • Amazon Cloudfront
  • Relational Database Services or RDS
  • and so much more!

Amazon first lauched their AWS platform in July 2002 but it was not until later in 2003 that Benjamin Black and Chris Pinkham publicly reformulated the AWS concept. Later in 2004, Amazon  launched their first AWS service called Simple Queue Service (SQS) for the public usage. In March 2006, Amazon re-launched AWS officially, combining the following 3 initial service offerings: SQS, S3 cloud storage and EC2.

Introduction to Amazon Web Services Platform

This is the introduction to an exhaustive collection of my tutorials and guides on AWS. This will help you get your AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CCP) certification, and also give you a hands-on experience using the AWS cloud platform. I created these tutorials from my most recent video courses on AWS cloud. It is awesome and it really could change your life. This I believe is the only most updated blog that will get you from wherever you are now to passing your AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner (CCP) certification exam.

I work hard with my partners to bring this course to you for free on this blog. Still, I want to thank you personally for putting your trust in me to help you on your certification journey.

About the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner CCP Course

The AWS certified cloud practitioner certification is a foundational level certification. Amazon recommends that you have at least 6 months experience. That can be in any role, from managerial to technical to sales or finance. However, if you do not have this experience, or even if you don’t know what cloud computing is, don’t worry . That’s okay. I’ve designed this course to start right at the very beginning with the Cloud Computing Fundamentals tutorial, so that I can give you the knowledge you need for the exam. I’ll also help you build a practical skill set so that you can actually use AWS in your job role.

The Course Structure

The course will start right at the beginning where we cover a foundation of AWS cloud computing. I’ll talk about the basic definition and terminology associated with AWS cloud computing.

I’ll discuss some of the key characteristics of cloud and we’ll look at some examples of cloud computing in practice. We then explore the Amazon Web Services cloud, where I’ll cover the AWS cloud platform. I’ll give you the knowledge you need for the AWS certified cloud practitioner exam.

In each subsequent tutorial, I’ll then covers AWS in more detail. I’ll cover many of the AWS services, pricing security, and architectural best practices. I’ve tried to use images to keep all the tutorials as visual as possible.

So I have lots of diagrams and many hands on labs which actually get you started using AWS. The hands on labs are extremely useful and a lot of fun. So I highly recommend them even if you’re not looking towards getting the CCP certification. If you have the time please do the hands on labs. It’s a great way to get some hands-on experience and also to contextualize and solidify the knowledge that you’re learning in the theory lessons.

I also want you to have a strong experience based skill set by the end of the course. Most sections of the course have an exam cram lesson at the end. In this lesson I quickly repeat the key facts from that section that you need to know for the exam.

These are an excellent tool for revision. You can also use the quizzes at the end of each section to test your knowledge. I’ve also included two full length practice exams at the end of the course. These have exam difficulty and exam style questions so you can really measure your progress, and see whether you’re ready to take the real AWS exam or not.

In addition to the tutorials, I provide a course download with links to AWS articles and exam specific training notes. The download link is provided in the last lecture of this section. Please make sure you check these links as there’s some crucial information that you do need to know for the exam. Here’s the download link to the official AWS-Certified-Cloud-Practitioner_Exam-Guide.

I really hope you enjoy this course. There’s loads of information packed into it so make sure you take plenty of notes.

A Walk-through of the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner Exam Guide

In this section, I just want to take you through the exam guide for the AWS certified cloud practitioner exam so you understand what it is you’ve taken on with this course and your plans to actually get certified.

So firstly a few basic details about the exam. The format is multiple choice and multiple answer. So you might have four choices and you have to choose one of them.  You might have five or more choices and you have to choose two or more of those answers.

AWS CCP Exam format
AWS CCP Exam format

Now this is a foundational level certification so it really is the beginning with AWS. That’s good news because it means that though this is a valuable certification in the market, the questions are at a fairly basic level.

So with everything you get in this course you should be well prepared to pass this exam easily in the end. The delivery method is either a testing center or an online proctored exam. Now I actually retook the exam in the online proctored form. That means I was able to take the exam from home.

So you have to clear your desk and make sure that there is no one else in the room. There’s a few requirements that they have of you. If you can satisfy those requirements then taking it at home is quite a good idea because you might find you’re a bit more relaxed in that way.

Time to complete is 90 minutes and it cost 100 U.S dollars. Now there is a practice exam you can pay 20 U.S dollars for. I personally wouldn’t recommend it because I give you some great practice questions in this course. To be honest, you don’t even get many AWS CCP Sample exam Questions and I don’t think the practice questions are really worth the money.

Now there are a few different language versions available as well. So in terms of recommended knowledge, AWS say that you need at least 6 months experience with AWS cloud. That can include technical or non-technical roles like managerial, sales, purchasing or financial.

In reality this is not necessary for this course. I do think if you have some level of technical expertise, even if it’s just understanding information technology at a basic level, that will help. But I try to make sure I give you everything from the beginning. If you have any questions at all you can always post it in the comments box below or reach out to me directly using the contact us form.

Overview of AWS Whitepapers

There are a few white papers which were recommended in the exam guide a few months ago. Now they have been removed but I’m just letting you know anyway because they are still relevant to the exams. So I’m not sure why they took them out of the exam guide. They could be useful reading. Here’s the overview of Amazon Web Services White Paper.

  • Architecting for the cloud: AWS Best Practices whitepaper
  • How AWS Pricing Works whitepaper
  • Cost Management in the AWS cloud whitepaper

Now feel free to read those if you want to do a bit of extra reading. They could be useful. However I do try to make sure that I cover all of the content that’s necessary for the exam that comes out of those papers. So again for the time and length, it’s a 90 minute exam and you’ve got 65 questions.

So if you’re doing the math you might think well that’s not a lot of time per question. But honestly most of the questions are very straightforward. So once you’ve covered the topic in this course, you should find those questions very easy and be able to answer them very quickly for scoring.

Passing Score and Question Format

The score is scaled between 100 and 000 points. You need a minimum passing score of 700 or 70 percent. The question format is multiple choice which means you have 1 correct response and 3 incorrect responses, or multiple response which has 2 or more correct responses with 5 or more options.

AWS CCP passing score and exam format
AWS CCP passing score and exam format

In my experience the vast majority of the multiple response questions only actually have 5 options from which you must choose 2 correct answers. There aren’t that many multiple response questions in the exam. The vast majority are multiple choice which are a bit easier. So let’s look at what’s included.

The Exam Domains

There are 4 domains in the exam guide.

AWS CCP exam Domain 1 and 2
AWS CCP exam Domain 1 and 2

In the first domain we have cloud concepts. This includes defining the AWS cloud and its value proposition, that is, why people might want to use the cloud. We also have identify Aspects of AWS Cloud economics, that is, why AWS Cloud makes economical sense. Then we have some of the different architectural design principles.

In the second domain we have security where you need to understand the shared responsibility model, that is, who’s responsible for what. What are AWS responsible for? What’s a customer responsible for?

There’s a bit around cloud security and compliance concept and access management capabilities. You also have to know how to identify where to get resources for security support.

In the third domain we have Technology.

AWS CCP exam Domain 3 and 4
AWS CCP exam Domain 3 and 4

Here you need to define the methods of deploying and operating in the AWS cloud.

You also need to understand the AWS global infrastructure such as what makes up the AWS data centers and the systems that are inside those data centers. You need to understand the core AWS services. This is a large part of the course where I teach you the basics of the AWS services that are in scope. Again, you need to identify resources available for billing support but in this case for technology.

The fourth (last) domain is Billing and Pricing. In this, you need to compare and contrast the various pricing models for AWS. That is, you need to understand AWS prices for specific services, and which type of pricing models are better for specific situation.

Furthermore, you need to understand the account structures in relation to billing and pricing. Finally, you need to identify billing support resources. The table below shows you the weighting of each of the 4 domains.

Weighting of the AWS CCP exam domains
Weighting of the AWS CCP exam domains

Cloud concepts is 26 percent. Security compliance is 25. Technology is 33. Billing and Pricing is 16 percent.

Now you may find that some of these values change a little bit over time so I’ve noticed over the last few months the AWS have released a few minor changes to the exam guide and they have changed it slightly so the weighting might change a little bit. Unless there’s a major change, you shouldn’t worry too much. The content in this course is going to cover you.

I hope this introduction has answered the question “What is Amazon Cloud Services?”  I also hope it has helped you understand what to expect in the Amazon CCP exam now. Everything that you need is provided in this course and the downloadable PDFs (links given above) which are free exam guide and sample questions you can practice with.

You should have everything you need to successfully pass this exam. As I mentioned before, the questions are fairly straightforward so though there’s a lot of content in this course it really just aims to make sure that you’re well prepared on the day and I believe that if you follow through the course you will find it easy when you turn up in the exam center.

The next module of the AWS course is Overview of Amazon Cloud Computing.

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