Community Blog Friday Q&A - Week 1 - Questions From The Vault

Friday Q&A - Week 1 - Questions From The Vault

Have burning questions about Alibaba Cloud? Share them with the Alibaba Cloud Academy and we'll do our best to address them in the blog!

By Jeremy Pedersen

Hey there! Welcome to the first in a series of Friday columns, where I address common questions I receive as an Alibaba Cloud training advisor, and I do my best to provide some answers!

Let's jump right in on this week's burning questions.

Object Storage Service (OSS) Questions

Q: What is the maximum size of an OSS bucket?

Officially, there is no maximum size for a bucket! They can grow arbitrarily. Unofficially, I have seen some documents quoting a size of 50 PB (Petabytes), but I don't think too many customers are likely to hit that limit! You can get a full list of all the other limits associated with the OSS service here

Q: When hosting a website using OSS, can you use a custom domain name like www.abc.com?

Yes, you can bind your own domain custom name. See this page for more details.

Q: Is there a local client app for uploading/downloading files from OSS?

Yes, actually there are a number of different tools available which can help you manage OSS buckets and objects.

See the full list here.

Q: Can you access OSS using a RAM role?

Yes. Both the OSS Browser desktop application and the OSS CLI support this, by giving you the option to authenticate using an STS token.

Q: Is OSS best suited to hosting static or dynamic web pages?

OSS doesn't act like a traditional web server so it's best for static pages. For dynamic sites, you would want to use ECS.

Q: How does OSS image processing work?

OSS applies a stylesheet or image transform operation in the background, then passes the image to the user. No processing is done on the client side (in the browser), it is all handled by OSS. You can learn more about how to use OSS's built-in image processing capabilities here.

ApsaraDB Questions

Q: Does ApsaraDB for RDS support Oracle?

No, we don't have an Oracle version of the RDS service, but you can run Oracle databases using ECS Bare Metal instances. Or you can migrate from an Oracle database over to PolarDB, using a migration tool like ADAM. See this page for more details.

Getting away from Oracle can save you a lot of money on database licensing costs, so PolarDB is worth considering: its PPAS database engine is largely Oracle-compatible.

Q: Does the ApsaraDB for RDS database service support auto scaling?

No, but it is possible to increase read capacity for some database engine types (like MySQL) by adding read replicas. See this page.

Q: Does vertical scaling (changing CPU/RAM configuration) in RDS require a restart?

Yes, vertical scaling requires a restart, but for Enterprise Edition and High Availability edition, no manual restart is required and services can continue operating during an upgrade (with possible connection interruptions of up to 30 seconds). For Basic Edition (which has only one database node), the database will be unavailable until the upgrade process is complete. See more details here.

Q: Are RDS backups incremental or is a full snapshot made on each backup?

There are actually three different types of backups that can be made in RDS depending on both the instance type and storage type you selected when you created the instance. They are:

  1. Physical backup
  2. Logical backup
  3. Snapshot backup

Both physical backups and logical backups can only be made by RDS instances with local SSD storage. The backups are stored directly on the local SSD. These backups are relatively flexible: you can backup and restore individual tables, as well as download local copies of the backups.

Snapshot backups are only made by RDS instances that use Cloud Disks for storage rather than local SSDs. This is the same Cloud Disk storage backend used by Alibaba Cloud's ECS service, so the snapshots work just like ECS snapshots (i.e. they are incremental, cannot be downloaded, and rollback involves fully restoring from a complete snapshot). These backups offer very high data durability but are less flexible than physical or logical backups.

You can find more information here.

Miscellaneous Questions

Q: Does Alibaba Cloud have a service similar to Azure's App service?

The closest equivalent is probably Web Application Service. I'm not as familiar with Azure as with AWS, so I would say it is similar to AWS's Elastic Beanstalk, and therefore probably also similar to Azure's App Service.

Q: Does Alibaba VR rendering support HoloLens and Oculus?

We don't offer a managed VR rendering service on our International site yet. Perhaps in the future?

Q: Does Alibaba Cloud have something similar to AWS Sumerian?

I'll be honest I had to look this one up! I have not played with AWS Sumerian before, but it certainly looks interesting.

I'm not aware of any similar managed VR services on Alibaba Cloud yet.

I've Got A Question!

Great! Reach out to me at jierui.pjr@alibabacloud.com and I'll do my best to answer in a future Friday Q&A blog.

You can also follow the Alibaba Cloud Academy LinkedIn Page. We'll re-post the more interesting questions and answers there.

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