Skip to main content

AWS Essentials


Intro Video

Photo of Tia  Williams

Tia Williams

AWS Training Architect II in Content







Hands-on Labs




Course Details

AWS Essentials is a course for those who are completely new to AWS. No prior AWS experience is required. We will introduce you to AWS, provide an overview of the core AWS services, and walk you through the process of setting up your own AWS account. Your learning will be reinforced with real-world scenarios and hands-on activities using our live environment. And quizzes will help check your understanding of the presented topics.

Access Project Omega:

Join the Linux Academy community slack for chat here: and join the #aws channel.


Getting Started

Course Introduction


Lesson Description:

Welcome to AWS Essentials! Let me tell you more about the course and a little about me.

Project Omega 2.0!


Lesson Description:

What is Project Omega? You can access the interactive diagram for Project Omega using this link:

How to Use the Interactive Guide


Lesson Description:

Project Omega's interactive learning guide is here! This lesson provides a walkthrough on how to access and use the interactive guide.You can access the interactive diagram for Project Omega using this link:

Course Features and Tools


Lesson Description:

Linux Academy provides great features and tools to help you get the most out the course. Let's take a look at how you can use the course features to make the most of your learning experience.

New to IT? This Video is Just for You


Lesson Description:

Are you new to IT? This video will help you get started.

AWS Essentials Plus AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner For Certification


Lesson Description:

This video gives you a walkthrough on how to use the AWS Essentials course and the AWS Certitifed Cloud Practitioner course together to pass your AWS Certitifed Clould Practitioner exam. Recommended LinksAWS Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01) AWS Certifed Cloud Practitioner (CLF-C01) Exam Guide

AWS Free Tier: Usage Tracking and Billing Widget


Lesson Description:

This video gives you a walkthrough on how to use the AWS Free Tier Tracking and Billing Widget for your own AWS Account!

Account Basics

Account Basics Overview


Lesson Description:

In this section we'll cover account basics. Account basics are key concepts you need to understand before you get started with AWS, and in this video we will outline the topics that will be discussed in the rest of this section.

AWS Free Tier


Lesson Description:

Learn about the AWS Free Tier, and how you can use some AWS services for free.

Create an AWS Account


Lesson Description:

In this lesson we will walk step-by-step through the process of creating an AWS account. Creating an account is an important first step in using AWS. If you would like to create your own AWS account, this lesson will give you the information you need to get started. Create a Free AWS Account

How to Navigate the AWS Console


Lesson Description:

As a new AWS user, it's important to understand how the AWS Management Console is used. In this lesson, we'll review some tips and discuss the different ways that the console can be used to see system alerts, switch between regions, access support, and access the various AWS services.

Creating a Billing Alarm


Lesson Description:

Create a billing alarm using AWS Cloudwatch, to ensure that AWS usage charges do not exceed a specified amount. For the latest on creating billing alarms in AWS, see:

AWS Documentation


Lesson Description:

AWS has so many services and features that it is important to understand how to locate and use the documentation. This lesson demonstrates how to access the AWS docmentation, and explores various ways to utilize it to assist with using and troubleshooting AWS services. Note: The AWS documentation link shown in the video now redirects to:

Wrap It Up - Account Basics


Lesson Description:

In this section we discussed Account Basics. Now let's take a couple of minutes to review what we have learned and summarize the topics before we move on to the next section.

Identity and Access Management (IAM)

Introduction to AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)


Lesson Description:

Welcome to AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM). Join us as we describe the lesson topics that will be covered in this section. For more on AWS IAM, see:

What is IAM?


Lesson Description:

What is IAM and why would you use it? We answer these questions in our discussion about AWS Identity and Access Management.

IAM Initial Setup and Configuration


Lesson Description:

One of the first tasks that needs to be completed after creating a new AWS account is the initial setup and configuration of IAM. In this lesson, we'll complete five tasks that AWS recommends be completed on all new accounts. For more on Multi-Factor Authentication, see:

IAM Users and Policies


Lesson Description:

How do we give someone access to an AWS Service? We create an IAM user and attach a policy granting them access to it. In this lesson, we discuss how to create users and use a policy to grant them access. Note: AWS has introduced tag support with IAM. For more information, see:

IAM Groups and Policies


Lesson Description:

When large numbers of users need access to resources, it is much more efficient to give that access on a large scale, rather than granting privileges one at a time to individual users. In this lesson we'll see why using groups is the best way to do it, and walk through the process of assigning access policies to a group.

IAM Roles


Lesson Description:

In addition to granting access to users and groups, there are times when we need to delegate access to users, applications, or services that need access to AWS resources. This lesson explains the difference between granting user/group access versus granting access to a service. For more on AWS IAM Roles, see:

Wrap It Up - IAM Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up IAM. Let's summarize what we learned in this section.

Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


QUIZ: AWS IAM Essentials


Summary of AWS Network Services

Overview of Network Services


Lesson Description:

In this section we are going to discuss AWS services. Our discussion is going to include the AWS Global Infrastructure. We will also talk about AWS VPCs and the associated components including internet gateways, network access control lists, route tables, and subnets.

AWS Global Infrastructure


Lesson Description:

AWS maintains a world wide infrastructure. In this lesson, we will take a look at the AWS Global Infrastructure and describe how AWS services provide a highly available infrastructure through the use of regions and availability zones.

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)

VPC Basics


Lesson Description:

VPCs play an important role in the AWS architecture. A VPC is your private network within the AWS Infrastructure. Your AWS resources (such as EC2 instances and RDS databases) are deployed within a VPC. A VPC also provides internet connectivity for your AWS resources. In this lesson, we'll describe and discuss VPC basics.

Internet Gateways (IGW)


Lesson Description:

In this lesson we will discuss the role of internet gateways with VPCs, and describe how internet gateways are attached to a VPC to provide internet connectivity for provisioned AWS resources. For more information on AWS Internet Gateways, see:

Route Tables (RTs)


Lesson Description:

A GPS tells you how to get from point A to point B. Within a VPC, a route table tells your data how to get from point A to point B. In this lesson we will describe route tables, and we will talk about how to create and modify route table entries. We'll also talk about how route tables are used to direct traffic to the internet via the internet gateway. Note: You can delete a route table if it has no associated subnets. You can't delete the main route table.

Network Access Control List (NACLs)


Lesson Description:

Security is a topic on everyone's mind. What can we do to proactively protect our computers from threats and vulnerabilities. One of the features used to protect your computer is a firewall. A firewall acts as a barrier for unauthorized communication to your computer. With a VPC, this firewall is called a Network Access Control List (NACL). In this lesson, we discuss NACLs and describe how to create rules to allow and deny traffic through the NACL.



Lesson Description:

Subnets are the location within a VPC where we store AWS resources, like EC2 instances and RDS databases. In this lesson we will discuss subnets and how they are used within a VPC.

Availability Zones (VPC Specific)


Lesson Description:

Availability Zones are used with AWS resources to provide redundancy and high availability within an AWS region. There are multiple availability zones within most regions. In this lesson we will look at how availability zones affect VPC high availability.

Wrap It Up - VPC Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to Wrap Up VPCs. In this lesson we wrap up our discussion and summarize VPCs and the associated components.

Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


QUIZ: VPC Essentials


Compute Services Overview

Summary of AWS Compute Services


Lesson Description:

AWS provides a variety of compute services. One of the most commonly used services is Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). In this section we will discuss EC2, its components and features including Amazon Machine Images (AMIs), Security Groups, Instance Types, Security Groups and more.

Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2)

EC2 Basics


Lesson Description:

This lesson provides basic information about EC2. We'll compare an EC2 instance and its components to the basic components of a computer. We will also cover the most common purchasing options for EC2 Instances.

Amazon Machine Images (AMIs)


Lesson Description:

When setting up an EC2 Instance, we need to install an operating system, applications and configure settings. To simplify this process, we can use Amazon Machine Images (AMIs). AMIs are templates that contain an operating system, and are typically bundled with other applications and settings. We are going to talk about the different AMI categories, and components of an AMI.

Instance Types


Lesson Description:

An important part of setting up an EC2 instance is selecting the instance type. Instance types should be selected based on the application and workload requirements. In this lesson, we'll take a look at the instance types and associated components.

Elastic Block Storage (EBS)


Lesson Description:

EC2 instances require storage. One way to provide that storage is by using Elastic Block Storage (EBS). In this lesson we'll discuss EBS basics, including EBS root volumes, attaching and detaching EBS volumes, and snapshots.

Security Groups


Lesson Description:

Security groups provide virtual firewall protection for EC2 instances. Security groups protect EC2 instances by allowing and denying specific ports/traffic. They protect the instance, while network access control lists protect at the subnet level. In this video we will discuss security groups, and compare and contrast security groups against network access control lists (NACLs). Clarification: By default, a Default Security Group allows inbound traffic for only instances in the same security group.

IP Addressing


Lesson Description:

EC2 instances can have private and public IP addresses. IP addresses are required for communication the internet. In this lesson, we'll discuss how IP addressing is applied to an EC2 instance, and compare the basic functionality of a private IP address vs a public IP address.

Launching and Using an EC2 Instance


Lesson Description:

It's time to provision an EC2 instance. We will utilize what we have learned so far in this section, and apply it them as we launch an EC2 instance. We will then connect to that instance using SSH and attempt to load an Apache web page. We will have to do a little troubleshooting to get everything to work properly. Note: If following along, just use the "Amazon Linux AMI (not the Amazon Linux 2 AMI). Here is the mini script used in the Advanced section when creating the EC2 instance: #!/bin/bash yum update -y yum install -y httpd service httpd start

Connecting to an EC2 Instance from a Windows PC


Lesson Description:

Connecting to an EC2 instance is a common AWS task. In working with AWS, we may be working with a variety of operating systems. In most lessons, we utilize Terminal on a Linux or Mac computer. In this lesson, we demonstrate how to connect via SSH from a Windows computer using the Putty application.

Wrap It Up - EC2 Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up EC2. In this video we summarize all of the topics we covered in this EC2 section.

Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


QUIZ: EC2 Essentials


Storage Services Overview

Summary of AWS Storage Services


Lesson Description:

Cloud data storage? Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) is a bulk object storage service. In this section we are going to learn about S3 itself, and how to use it.

Storage Services

S3 Basics


Lesson Description:

Amazon S3 is a bulk storage service for objects. In this lesson, we learn the basics of S3. We'll review a definition of S3, and look at some elementary but important configuraiton options that we'll need to configure when we store data on S3.

Buckets and Objects


Lesson Description:

Where does our data go when we upload it to Amazon S3? It is uploaded, as objects, into buckets folders. Let's talk about how these items will affect the data that you upload to S3.

Storage Classes


Lesson Description:

Amazon S3 storage has a variety of characteristics that are based on Storage Class. For example, cost and object availability can vary by storage class. Let's compare the various storage classes, so we can understand the most cost effective and efficient way to store data. Note: For some new information on AWS Storage Classes, see:

Object Lifecycles


Lesson Description:

Bulk storing objects on Amazon S3 Standard storage can become costly. We can automatically move data that is not critical or frequently accessed to different storage classes using lifecycles. In this lesson, we will learn how to transition objects between storage classes using lifecycles.



Lesson Description:

Trying to access an object on Amazon S3? Permissions are used to determine if access should be allowed or denied. Let's learn how to apply permissions to S3 buckets and objects. For updated information on setting S3 permissions, see:

Object Versioning


Lesson Description:

Have you ever wished for a previous version of a file? With object versioning, you can keep multiple versions of the same file in an S3 bucket. Let's take a look at object versioning, and how it applies to buckets and the objects inside them.

Wrap It Up - S3 Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up this section on Amazon S3. Let's talk about what we learned here.

Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


QUIZ: S3 Essentials


Database Services Overview

Summary of AWS Database Services


Lesson Description:

Join me in this database introduction video, where we prepare to discuss Amazon RDS and Amazon DynamoDB.


RDS and DynamoDB Basics


Lesson Description:

To SQL or NoSQL, that is the question. Amazon RDS and Amazon DynamoDB are both database services offered by AWS. In this lesson, we compare and contrast these two services, and define which database type might be better suited to holding which types of data.

Provisioning a RDS (MySQL)


Lesson Description:

It's database time! Let's provision an RDS database. Once we get it provisioned, we can connect to it using MySQL Workbench. For hands on practice, see the "Creating an Amazon Aurora RDS Database (MySQL Compatible)" lab instead to avoid costs. For details on the free tier options, see: For downloading or reading more on MySQL Workbench, see:

Wrap It Up - Database Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up databases. Let's talk about what we learned about RDS and DynamoDB in this section.

QUIZ: AWS Essentials: RDS/DynamoDB Essentials


Overview of Monitoring, Alerts, and Notifications

Summary of AWS Services for Monitoring, Alerts, and Notifications


Lesson Description:

Monitoring, alerts, and notifications services are all complementary parts of AWS products. It is often necessary to monitor AWS services, and to receive alerts and notifications when an event happens within the environment. Cloudwatch is what does the monitoring and creating of alerts. Amazon SNS is what sends out the notifications regarding those events and alerts. This notification application, Amazon SNS, is the first topic that we will cover.

Simple Notification Service (SNS)

SNS Basics


Lesson Description:

How does Amazon SNS work, and what type of notifications can it send? We're going to cover SNS basics in this lesson, including the components of SNS. See for the latest on SNS limits and restrictions.

Using SNS


Lesson Description:

How do Amazon SNS notifications work? SNS is a push service, and in this lesson we will learn what that means, and how SNS notifications get pushed to a topic. For more on SNS, see:

Wrap It Up - SNS Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up our journey with Amazon SNS.

QUIZ: SNS Essentials


Management Tools

Introduction to Management Tools


Lesson Description:

It is important to monitor, manage and track what's happening with the AWS resources. It's even more important that it be easy to complete these tasks. AWS has several monitoring and management tools that can be used with your AWS resources. In this section, we're going to have a look at the CloudWatch and CloudTrail management tools.

CloudWatch Basics


Lesson Description:

It's time to check out AWS Management tools. What is CloudWatch? How does it work? We're going to learn that and more CloudWatch basics in this lesson.

CloudWatch Metrics and Alarms


Lesson Description:

CloudWatch can be used to monitor various metrics within the AWS environment. For example, we can monitor our EC2 instances and RDS databases for things like networking and CPU utilization. In this lesson, we'll look at the CloudWatch Dashboard and how to add a widget to it. We'll also talk about CloudWatch Alarms and how they can integrate with an SNS Topic. For the latest on Creating Billing Alarms, see:

CloudTrail - Basics


Lesson Description:

When managing an AWS account, it is important to track certain tasks and functions. Many environments require the tracking of administrative tasks for compliance reasons. CloudTrail is the AWS management tool used to track those tasks, and in this lesson we're going to go through CloudTrail Basics.

Wrap It Up - Management Tools Summary


Lesson Description:

Time to wrap up. We'll review and summarize what we've covered in this section about AWS Management Tools.

QUIZ: CloudWatch and CloudTrail Essentials


Elastic Load Balancer (ELB)

Introduction to Load Balancing, Elasticity and Scalability


Lesson Description:

Understanding how to optimize the compute environment is very important. In this lesson we introduce elasticity, load balancing, and scalability, and we kick it all off with this section about Elastic Load Balancer (ELB).

ELB Basics


Lesson Description:

Too many people using your application or website is a good problem to have. How do we handle all of that traffic? Well, one way to manage it is by balancing the load across multiple servers (EC2 instances). In this lesson, we're going to meet Elastic Load Balancers and some associated concepts. For more on ELBs, see:

Creating an ELB


Lesson Description:

Let's walk through the process of creating an Elastic Load Balancer.

Wrap Up - ELB Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up Elastic Load Balancers. Join me as we reminisce about our journey to understanding and creating an Application Load Balancer. Note: For information on ELB SLAs, see: For information on Error Codes and troubleshooting ELBs, see:

QUIZ: ELB Essentials


Auto Scaling

Introduction to Auto Scaling


Lesson Description:

How do we respond to changing demand? During peak times we have a lot of traffic, but outside of those hours there is very little demand. How do we balance the two so that we don't unnecessarily pay for more resources than we need? The answer is Auto Scaling. Auto Scaling is elastic, meaning it can provision additional resources as necessary, and de-provision resources when they are no longer needed. In this video, we'll meet Auto Scaling, and have a look at what it can do.

Auto Scaling Basics


Lesson Description:

It stretches! It snaps back! It's elastic! It's auto scaling! Let's talk about the basics of Auto Scaling and see how it works.

Using Auto Scaling


Lesson Description:

Now that we've learned about Auto Scaling basics and learned about elasticity, let's walk through how to configure Auto Scaling components.

Wrap It Up - Auto Scaling Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up our time with a summary of the whole Auto Scaling topic.

QUIZ: Auto Scaling Essentials


Route 53

Introduction to Route 53


Lesson Description:

How does typing a website address into your browser get you to the server hosting the website's content? Domain Name System (DNS) and Route 53 work together to direct users to your website. In this video we introduce Route 53.

Route 53 Basics


Lesson Description:

In this lesson, we'll learn about Route 53 and the Domain Name Service (DNS).

Using Route 53


Lesson Description:

Let's put what we've learned into action! In this lesson we will walk through registering a domain, and creating alias records that point at the Elastic Load Balancer. Then we will load our new domain name and validate that our web page loads properly.

CloudFront Basics


Lesson Description:

When users from all round the world are accessing an application or website, they can experience latency. CloudFront Content Delivery Network (CDN) replicates application and website data to locations around the world to reduce this latency, and give the users the fastest access possible to the data. In this lesson, we'll look at how CloudFront works with Route 53 and S3.

Wrap It Up - Route 53 Summary


Lesson Description:

Time to wrap up our Route 53 road trip!

Hands-on Labs are real live environments that put you in a real scenario to practice what you have learned without any other extra charge or account to manage.


QUIZ: Route 53 Essentials



Introduction to Lambda


Lesson Description:

We're going serverless! Join me in this lesson as we introduce Lambda. It's the AWS serverless technology that allows us to execute code without the use of a server at all.

Lambda Basics


Lesson Description:

Let's learn Lambda basics. What exactly is serverless, and how does it work? Lambda Runtimes Q: What languages does AWS Lambda support? AWS Lambda natively supports Java, Go, PowerShell, Node.js, C#, Python, and Ruby code, and provides a Runtime API which allows you to use any additional programming languages to author your functions.

Lambda Test


Lesson Description:

Let's go serverless, and test Lambda.

Wrap It Up - Lambda Summary


Lesson Description:

It's time to wrap up our time with Lambda.

QUIZ: Lambda Essentials


Final Steps

What We Learned


Lesson Description:

Time to wrap it all up! Let's review all that we have learned about AWS Essentials.

What's Next?


Lesson Description:

What's Next?

Take this course and learn a new skill today.

Transform your learning with our all access plan.

Start 7-Day Free Trial