AWS Definitions

This glossary explains the meaning of key words and phrases that information technology (IT) and business professionals use when discussing AWS and related software products. You can find additional definitions by visiting WhatIs.com or using the search box below.

  • D

    data lake

    A data lake is a large object-based storage repository that holds data in its native format until it is needed. While a hierarchical data warehouse stores data in files or folders, a data lake uses a flat architecture to store data.

  • E

    Elastic Load Balancing (ELB)

    Elastic Load Balancing (ELB) is a load-balancing service for Amazon Web Services (AWS) deployments.

  • G

    Globally Distributed MySQL-as-a-Service

    Globally Distributed MySQL-as-a-Service is a Database as a Service (DBaaS) product from GenieDB.

  • Google App Engine

    Google App Engine is a cloud computing platform as a service that allows web app developers and enterprises access to Google's scalable hosting and tier 1 internet service.

  • Google Compute Engine

    Google Compute Engine is an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offering that allows clients to run workloads on Google's physical hardware. GCE competes with Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Microsoft Azure.

  • H

    hardware security module (HSM)

    A hardware security module (HSM) is a physical device that provides extra security for sensitive data.

  • I

    IT chargeback / showback

    IT chargeback is an accounting strategy that applies the costs of IT services, hardware or software to the business unit in which they are used. IT showback is similar to IT chargeback, but the charges are for informational purposes only and no one is billed.

  • M

    Memcached

    Memcached is an open source, distributed memory object caching system that alleviates database load to speed up dynamic Web applications. The system caches data and objects in memory to minimize the frequency with which an external database or API (application program interface) must be accessed.

  • S

    Skytap

    Skytap is a software company that makes applications for cloud automation and virtual machine (VM) management, development and testing.

  • Amazon's data-flow PaaS: AppStream and Kinesis

    Learn why AppStream and Kinesis are different kinds of data flow services.

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