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DevOps and Security Glossary Terms

AWS RDS Postgres Monitoring

AWS RDS Postgres Monitoring

For applications based in Amazon Web Services cloud, tracking and monitoring performance is a critical, but relatively easy, process to undertake to ensure optimum performance and avoid critical failure.

What is an AWS RDS DB instance?

The Amazon Web Service (AWS) Relational Database Service is a program that enables users to create, scale, manage, and generally operate collections of interrelated datasets within the Amazon Cloud. A DB instance is an “isolated database environment running in the cloud.” In other words, it is a discrete data system which exists as a basic component of RDS, and can include either a single or multiple databases on which users are able to run their cloud-based applications.

Database languages

Users are able to engage the engine of their choice to operate a DB instance. Each involves unique features and parameters which help the database run according to the functionality of that language. AWS currently allows 5 languages, including:

  • MySQL, 40 instances enabled.

  • MariaDB, 40 instances enabled.

  • PostgreSQL, 40 instances enabled.

  • Oracle, 10 instances enabled with pre existing license model, 40 enabled with bring-your-own-license model.

  • Microsoft SQL Server, 10 instances enabled with pre existing license model.

RDS additionally enables 10 instances for SQL Server bases including the Enterprise, Standard, Web, and Express editions.

What is AWS RDS Postgres monitoring?

As with other database monitoring systems and procedures, Postgres monitoring for AWS RDS DB instances helps to ensure their reliability, availability, and performance. In AWS monitoring is an automatic procedure which may be performed every five minutes or 60 seconds depending on your need.

More generally, database monitoring is a security program which examines and analyzes datasets within an instance to determine operational standing and report on inconsistent or missing data, impaired or degraded processes, and any other problems which may affect instance performance.

How to monitorAWS RDS Postgres

Amazon RDS easily connects to PostgreSQL databases which can then export logs to Amazon CloudWatch for easy reference of instance metrics. This helps to debug multipoint failures, and collect data across all parts of the AWS solution.

Key metrics for AWS RDS monitoring

Tracking these vital insights will help you to understand the current health of your DB instances, avoid critical failures, and maintain optimal functionality at all times.

  1. High CPU or RAM consumption. Especially if you are running multiple servers, instances, or databases within an instance, it is important to track the speed, performance, and volume of your memory, and S + P of your CPU as both of these directly correlate to overall performance of your greater instance. Inadequate performance of either will drastically slow response time and can lead to application crash.

  2. Disk space consumption. Growing databases will be “crushed” if adequate space is not allowed for new incoming datasets. Monitoring this metric lets you know if and when you need to scale your database to make room for more data.

    AWS allows you to enable auto-scaling for your DB instances. However this does represent an additional cost to you.

  3. Network traffic. Monitoring this metric can help you determine if an instance’s poor performance is external versus internal. Poor or diminished network traffic may indicate the database is inaccessible due to a misconfiguration or potentially an attack.

  4. DB connections, DB load. Each instance allows for a limited amount of internal DB connections. When that limit is reached, RDS will automatically reject any input which follows. Tracking the number of connections against the DB instance’s capacity (load) allows you to avoid catastrophic data loss, and understand when you need to scale up or create a new database.

IOPS metrics. Your read/ write IOPS (instance operations per second) can have a negative impact on application performance, slowing or completely stalling activity if there are too few. However you are billed based on IOPS volume and too many IOPS can result in an extraordinary price tag on operations. You should understand what IOPS level is optimal for your application and maintain that level for best performance at cost.

AWS specific monitoring tools

Here are a few key tools to help you track top metrics and manage your DB instances.

  • Instance status. Automatic status checks examine overall performance of your DB instances and return failed status checks with specific messaging if an issue is found. These messages will state either Ok, Warning, Impaired, or Insufficient Data to indicate performance and potential problem.

  • RDS recommendations. This AWS RDS feature examines your custom and automatic parameters against performance data and other information and generates a suggested course of action or possible configurations to help your application and DB instance run at optimum capacity.

  • Performance insights. This tool provides a quick-reference dashboard of all key metrics relating to your DB instance to help you quickly assess potential problems and take action where necessary.

  • Enhanced monitoring. If you need to track how new processes impact performance, use this tool to track DB instance performance metrics in real time.

  • CloudWatch. This AWS service intakes data from PostgreSQL logs and generates informational insights to allow you to better understand, troubleshoot, and manage your DB instances. You can also use CloudWatch to set up monitoring alerts based on custom parameters, and automate responses.

  • EventBridge. This tool is an AWS event pipeline that more easily allows you to track events from your cloud-based application.

CloudTrail. Another native AWS service which automatically tracks events, activities, and other data from multiple DB instances existing within a single account for comparative and big-picture reference.

Third-party RDS monitoring

Amazon has everything you need, both on and offline. Monitoring your AWS applications may be done exclusively from the Amazon Cloud, but this means finding, learning, and using every component Amazon has to offer. Or, you can choose a third party application to do it for you.

Sumo Logic is the first enterprise-grade, cloud-based monitoring service that helps you manage and analyze collected data and provide real-time insight on operational or security concerns on all your cloud and internet-connected applications.

And Sumo Logic seamlessly integrates with Amazon AWS, making monitoring and managing your database instance even easier and more intuitive.

Get started for free today to learn why Sumo Logic is right for your business.

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