Amazon CloudWatch - Logs, Events, Alarms and Dashboards - AWS Certification Cheat Sheet


Let’s get a quick overview of Amazon CloudWatch - Logs, Events, Alarms and Dashboards.

You will learn

  • What is Amazon CloudWatch?
  • What are the different Amazon CloudWatch Components - Logs, Events, Alarms and Dashboards?
  • When do we use Amazon CloudWatch?

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Monitoring AWS with Amazon CloudWatch

  • Monitoring and observability service
  • Collects monitoring and operational data in the form of logs, metrics, and events
  • Set alarms, visualize logs, take automated actions and troubleshoot issues
  • Integrates with more than 70 AWS services:
    • Amazon EC2
    • Amazon DynamoDB
    • Amazon S3
    • Amazon ECS
    • AWS Lambda
    • and ….

Amazon CloudWatch Logs

  • Monitor and troubleshoot using system, application and custom log files
  • Real time application and system monitoring
    • Monitor for patterns in your logs and trigger alerts based on them
    • Example : Errors in a specific interval exceed a certain threshold
  • Long term log retention
    • Store logs in CloudWatch Logs for as long as you want (configurable - default:forever)
    • Or archive logs to S3 bucket (Typically involves a delay of 12 hours)
    • Or stream real time to Amazon Elasticsearch Service (Amazon ES) cluster using CloudWatch Logs subscription

Amazon CloudWatch Logs

  • CloudWatch Logs Agent
    • Installed on ec2 instances to move logs from servers to CloudWatch logs
  • CloudWatch Logs Insights
    • Write queries and get actionable insights from your logs
  • CloudWatch Container Insights
    • Monitor, troubleshoot, and set alarms for your containerized applications running in EKS, ECS and Fargate

Amazon CloudWatch Alarms

  • Create alarms based on:
    • Amazon EC2 instance CPU utilization
    • Amazon SQS queue length
    • Amazon DynamoDB table throughput or
    • Your own custom metrics

Amazon CloudWatch Alarms

  • Take immediate action:
    • Send a SNS event notification
      • Send an email using SNS
    • Execute an Auto Scaling policy

Amazon CloudWatch Alarm - Example

  • You set a CPU Utilization alarm on EC2 instance with a threshold of 80% over 3 periods of 10 minutes. If CPU utilization is 90% for 20 minutes, does the alarm get triggered?
    • No

Amazon CloudWatch Dashboards

  • Create auto refreshed graphs around all CloudWatch metrics
  • Automatic Dashboards are available for most AWS services and resources
  • Each Dashboard can have graphs from multiple regions

Amazon CloudWatch Events

  • Enable you to take immediate action based on events on AWS resources
    • Call a AWS Lambda function when an EC2 instance starts
    • Send event to an Amazon Kinesis stream when an Amazon EBS volume is created
    • Notify an Amazon SNS topic when an Auto Scaling event happens
  • Schedule events - Use Unix cron syntax
    • Schedule a call to Lambda function every hour
    • Send a notification to Amazon SNS topic every 3 hours

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