Future-proof your database workloads with Amazon Aurora Serverless v2

Dec 3, 2020 | Announcements, Migration, MSP

By Kireet Kokala, VP Big Data & Analytics at nClouds

On December 1 at AWS re:Invent 2020, AWS announced Amazon Aurora Serverless v2 availability in preview for the MySQL 5.7-compatible edition of Amazon Aurora (Aurora).

The Aurora Serverless v2 preview can easily be accessed by filling out the following form:

In this blog, I’ll begin with a brief overview of Aurora and Aurora Serverless. Then I’ll describe how v2 can help future-proof your database workloads.

Aurora and Aurora Serverless overview

Aurora is a fully managed MySQL and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database engine. With some workloads, Aurora provides up to five times better performance than MySQL and up to three times the throughput of PostgreSQL without requiring changes to most of your existing applications. The database management and administration features are derived from Amazon RDS.

With these tremendous capabilities and thousands of customers, Aurora Serverless stitches together an on-demand, cost-effective option for infrequent, intermittent, or unpredictable workloads. It automatically starts up, shuts down, and scales capacity based on your application’s needs, eliminating manual database management. Since it’s a fully managed service, you’ll save time because Aurora Serverless handles updating, upgrading, and provisioning for you. And, of course, you pay only for what you use. The highly popular Aurora Serverless v1 is ideal for use cases such as:

  • Variable, infrequently used applications. No need to provision for peak capacity — you only pay for the database resources you consume.
  • Development and test databases. Databases can automatically shut down when not in use and start much more quickly.

Our ad content and consumer influencer customers have been trying to get ahead of the curve and started asking about better ways to cost-optimize their Aurora clusters. We help them by taking the Aurora Serverless route while modernizing their overall solution. The underpinnings of what the serverless aspects bring to bear in Aurora are seen in the following diagram.

Figure 1:  Shows how Aurora manages the warm pool of resources in an AWS Region to minimize scaling time. When Aurora Serverless adds new resources to the Aurora DB cluster, it uses the router fleet to switch active client connections to the new resources.


Future-proofing your database workloads with Aurora Serverless 

So, why is v2 important?  Are customers in need of increased capabilities at a lower cost rate, or increased speeds, or better controls? It’s actually all of the above! While v2 provides the full breadth of Aurora’s capabilities, the exciting news is that it will scale to hundreds of thousands of transactions in a fraction of a second, delivering up to 90% cost savings compared to provisioning for peak capacity. It can now support enterprises with thousands of applications that want to manage database capacity across the board, including multi-tenant environments supporting different customers. Instead of doubling capacity every time a workload needs to scale, v2 adjusts capacity in fine-grained increments.

Advanced system designs and architecture are easily enabled with Aurora Serverless.  For instance, it can be used for the automated deployment of Aurora instances using modular architecture enabling PostgreSQL. While the following is a reference architecture, several of our customers have implemented Aurora with PostgreSQL and have footprints above 30TB.

Figure 2:  This reference architecture is designed to plug into your existing AWS CloudFormation templates as a drop-in PostgreSQL database replacement.


nClouds is currently helping some customers modernize integrated data analytics platforms. With Aurora Serverless v2 on the horizon, our solutions can certainly be overhauled and future-proofed. Some of our marketing platform customers have recently been asking about more granular controls with Aurora Serverless. We’re all excited that additional cost savings, enterprise-grade workloads, and granular controls will soon be available on v2.

Stay tuned! I will update this post when the preview extends to PostgreSQL and enters general availability.

In conclusion

I recommend that you try out the Aurora Serverless v2 preview if you’re modernizing integrated data analytics platforms and are seeking cost savings, have enterprise-grade workloads, want scalability to hundreds of thousands of transactions in a fraction of a second, and need more granular controls.

Need help with Aurora Serverless or your overall data and analytics strategy? We’ve got the experience, AWS data and analytics how-to knowledge and credentials, plus our research initiatives, to help you plan and execute your strategy.


nClouds is a cloud-native services company that helps organizations maximize site uptime, performance, stability, and support, bringing out the best of their people and technology using AWS