CloudFormation is the Key to Quick AWS Development Environments

CloudFormation may seem intimidating to someone who is learning AWS. But gaining this skill is very useful for automating your development environment quickly and efficiently. I’ll give you a simple understanding of why CloudFormation is essential for your infrastructure.

What is infrastructure as code?

Infrastructure as Code (IaC) is the method of controlling infrastructure via specifications in our code. It differs from conventional techniques, where we build and maintain physical infrastructure interactively.

What is CloudFormation?

AWS CloudFormation is a service that helps you create and design AWS resources so that you can spend less time maintaining them and more time working on your AWS-hosted apps.

How does it work?

In order to create a resource with CloudFormation, you write a template (either in .yaml or .json format) and declare the resources you want (for example, Amazon RDS DB instances).

CloudFormation is in complete charge of provisioning and configuration.

CloudFormation Characteristics

  • CloudFormation is Amazon Web Service’s (AWS) automated deployment solution.
  • It is referred to as “infrastructure as code” (IaC).
  • Cloudformation allows you to provision and manage a group of AWS resources in a repeatable and programmed way.
  • You just outline the resources you want. Cloudformation is responsible for managing, creating, and configuring the resources, as well as determining dependencies.

Advantages of Learning CloudFormation

1. You can automate repetitive tasks quickly

Replicating your application has some difficulties. Whenever you intend to duplicate a service, you must also replicate your resources. Not only must you record all of the resources required by your application, but you must also supply and configure those resources in each area.

You can use CloudFormation for deploying both intensive resources, and creating a simple service like an S3 bucket to hold a static website’s index.html page. A simple task like this can become too tedious if it needs to be repeated in each region.

2. Troubleshoot issues more effectively

With CloudFormation, you can quickly replicate and destroy your development and testing environments.

3. Increase the quality of your development environment and improve DevOps

  • Declaring your resource’s code in a YAML or JASON file and saving it in a source code, provides stakeholders with confidence that their infrastructure modifications have been peer-reviewed and will perform as intended.
  • You can store your app in version control and take and apply best-practice techniques to your infrastructure for software development. With versioning, you take control of your infrastructure by tracking exactly what changes were made, who modified them, and when.

Using CloudFormation to supply your infrastructure comes with these benefits:

  • All infrastructure modifications are documented in the commit history.
  • You have the option to examine modifications before accepting or merging them.
  • You may quickly compare various settings.
  • You may select and apply specific point-in-time settings.

4. Control and keep track of changes easily

Sometimes you may decide to improve resources granularly. If any difficulties arise following the upgrade, you may need to restore your infrastructure to its original configuration (which is defined as a “rollback”). You must remember altered resources and original values to accomplish this manually.

With a CloudFormation template, you don’t need to keep track of resource parameters because they are all declared in the outline. You can also track modifications, like modifying the source code of an app.

5. Simplify infrastructure administration

You might need to utilize multiple services simultaneously. All of these processes can add complexity and time before your application is even up and running.

You have two options:

  • You can create a new CloudFormation template
  • or instead change an existing one.

Use that template to build a CloudFormation group that is managed as a single entity (which is referred to as a “stack”). CloudFormation will automatically configure multiple services as a single entity.


If you are learning AWS, Cloudformation is the easiest IaC tool for deploying resources. As you can see, Cloudformation comes with benefits as follows:

  • It enhances visibility
  • Improves DevOps
  • Resolve problems faster
  • Allows for consistency
  • Scales your infrastructure with the minimum administrative workload.

Choose your IDE and declare your resources either in JSON or YAML format, and CloudFormation will take care of deployment and dependencies.

Want to learn practical cloud skills? Enroll in MCSF - Cloud Services Fundamentals.