Exploring AWS offerings for .NET developers and modern applications

Our latest Burgers on Cloud event aimed to explore what AWS offers for .NET developers and modern .NET applications.

On Tuesday, March 28th, our green Nortal flag was set up on Mikonkatu, in front of our office entrance, to welcome the curious .NET-minded guests for Burgers on Cloud. Burgers on Cloud is a live event series where Nortal experts from different fields share their knowledge, insights and expertise. Each event has a topic that covers the most interesting and trending themes in the industry. 

This event covered the developer experience for .NET developers using MacOS and AWS, the reasons why AWS is a great option for .NET apps, and how to leverage AWS cloud-native services to build modern .NET applications. Our speaker of the evening, Aki Pehkonen, Partner and Lead Architect, actively assists Nortal clients throughout their cloud migration journey and the implementation of modern software development methodologies. With extensive experience of working in the IT sector since the early 2000s, Aki is a certified professional cloud architect for Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud. In his presentation, he explained the .NET developer experience on AWS and why it is such an essential topic to discuss. 

.NET Developer Experience on AWS

At the beginning of his presentation, Pehkonen first stated that .NET developer experience in AWS is a “hidden gem” but works great. AWS has invested a lot in this area, providing a lot of tooling, and released their first SDKs in 2008. He stated that .NET is the third most popular development platform on AWS, according to the AWS re:Invent 2022. AWS is also a corporate sponsor of the .NET Foundation, showing that Microsoft and AWS are working side by side.  

“They have a lot of tooling to make migrations easier from .NET full framework to .NET core”, Pehkonen shared at the beginning of his presentation. 

Choosing .NET

Pehkonen also pointed out that the .NET of today is a very different technology compared to the .NET of 22 years ago when he started working with it.  

“Back then you usually had the whole technology stack from one vendor. You either worked on a Microsoft stack or on Java stack or some other stack, and the stack always included everything you needed” Pehkonen reminisces.  

Today the modern .NET works on any app or platform. In Nortal projects, .NET is primarily used for containerized workloads running on Linux, often on cloud platforms. Pehkonen believes that choosing AWS for .NET development is a good choice since AWS is a global market leader, has a wide variety of services, and its extensive ecosystem supports various programming languages and platforms. 

About the Cloud Strategies

“Companies cannot adopt a one-size-fit-all approach for cloud strategies as there are numerous business-related considerations that must be refactored in, and relying solely on single technology might not be feasible.” , Pehkonen shared.  

Many companies with a history of mergers or acquisitions may use multiple platforms and tech stacks side by side. When developing something new, AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud offer the same basic capabilities, but each platform has its own strengths and weaknesses, making it better suited for certain use cases or specialized area. For example, some Nortal customers use Azure for all their Microsoft based products and services, including Azure AD and Office 365, and then use AWS or Google Cloud for modern application development. 

Defining Modern Applications

In his presentation, Pehkonen also defined modern applications as scalable, resilient, loosely coupled, observable, and automated. He emphasized that there are two different things going on when talking about scalable applications, going up the stack from hardware to virtualization and serverless and shifting left on software engineering. To achieve scalability easier, companies should go up the stack and shift left to improve automation and move faster. Shifting left is a term used in software engineering that refers to the practice of moving activities earlier in the software development lifecycle. 

So, What DOES AWS Offer for .NET Developers?

Pehkonen listed several tools and services that AWS offers to .NET developers. For example, he mentioned IDE integration, which is available for both Mac and Windows, allowing developers to work seamlessly in Jetbrains Rider or Visual Studio. Pehkonen also highlighted the importance of SDKs for connecting to different services and creating resources in the cloud, and mentioned the AWS CDK, a cloud development kit available for .NET.  

“I’m personally a fan of command line tooling, and my demos are all based on the dotnet cli”, Pehkonen mentioned as he discussed the importance of command line tools and CICD pipeline tools, which makes AWS a one-stop-shop for .NET developers.  

Where Should Developers Run Their Apps?

When it comes to deciding where to run the apps, Pehkonen suggested that developers need to consider the traffic patterns of their applications and their level of expertise. Pehkonen offered several options, such as virtual machines, Amazon Lightsail, Elastic Beanstalk, containers, App Runner, and Lambda, and explained that the trade-offs depended on the level of abstraction required as well as the maintenance required for each option. As Pehkonen said, “at the end of the day, this is really about trade-offs.” Developers need to consider their specific requirements and skills to determine the best option for their application. 

Thank you to everyone who joined us for Burgers on Cloud! We hope you found the event informative and useful. Don’t forget to mark your calendars for our next event on June 8th!

If you’re interested in cloud services and expertise, Nortal can help your business on your cloud journey, no matter where it is. We build scalable and future-proof solutions on top of any cloud platform and understand the principles and laws of cloud platforms and services.

Interested in a career as a cloud expert? Join us today! Apply to our open positions or leave us your resume for upcoming openings. Every cloud project is different, and together we can build the right journey for you.

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