Monitoring Jump Start: Amazon Aurora

Andreas Wittig – 23 Jul 2018

Besides traditional database engine like PostgreSQL, MySQL, MariaDB, Oracle, and Microsoft SQL Server, AWS offers a cloud-optimized database engine as well: Amazon Aurora. The main benefits of Aurora are: performance, reliability, and scalability. Because Aurora is a fully managed service there are only a few things you have too keep an eye on. We created a CloudFormation template that you can use to monitor any RDS cluster within a minute.

What do I have to monitor?

Each cluster sends metrics to CloudWatch that we can observe with CloudWatch alarms. We recommend to create alarms for the following metrics:

  • CPU
    • CPUUtilization
    • CPUCreditBalance
  • Memory
    • FreeableMemory

If a metric crosses the alarm’s threshold, you receive an alert in Slack.

Besides metrics, RDS sends out events if the state of the database instance has changed. E.g., because of a failover.

We recommend to subscribe to events of the following categories:

  • failover
  • failure
  • low storage
  • maintenance
  • notification
  • recovery

For each new event, you receive an alert in Slack.

Set up instructions

If you prefer Terraform over CloudFormation checkout the Terraform module marbot-monitoring-rds-cluster.

  1. Create the CloudFormation stack with a single click
  2. Ensure that you selected the AWS region of your monitoring target: the database cluster
  3. Set the EndpointId parameter to the ID of your endpoint. You can get this value by asking @marbot for it on your Slack channel.
  4. Set the DBClusterIdentifier parameter to the ID of your RDS database cluster.
  5. Review the threshold parameters
  6. Save by clicking the Create button.

Monitoring Jump Start: Amazon Aurora

Andreas Wittig

Andreas Wittig

Consultant focusing on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Entrepreneur building Author of Amazon Web Services in Action, Rapid Docker on AWS, and

You can contact me via Email, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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