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AWS Essentials & Solutions Architect Assoc: The Total Course

New for 2019! Start with the basics, then learn everything you need to know to pass the AWS Solutions Architect Exam
Total Seminars • 150,000+ Students
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This course covers all the basics of AWS, from understanding the cloud and setting up a FREE AWS account to learning how to run an instance.
This is also a *2-for-1* course! You'll gain access to both the AWS Essentials and AWS Solutions Architect - Associate certification prep course.
Learn about the AWS Management Console, S3 buckets, EC2 instances, database services, security in the cloud, and the costs associated with AWS.

Mike Meyers and the Total Seminars Team, brings you this AWS Essentials & Solutions Architect course with your instructor Tom Carpenter.

Are you looking to learn more about AWS and what it can do for you or your company? Maybe you’ve heard this buzzword, but don’t know what it means to take your business and network solutions into the AWS cloud. Or, perhaps you’re a seasoned network tech looking to become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate.

Did you know the average annual salary for AWS Solutions Architect certification holders is $167,366 per year*? There aren’t enough AWS-trained people in the job market, so the demand for AWS Solutions Architect trained employees is high right now. Start your next career today with my course.

Tom Carpenter is the Chief Technical Officer at CWNP (Certified Wireless Network Professionals). He’s been in the IT industry for 25+ years, written over 20 books on IT subjects, and is also heavily involved in objectives development and exam creation in the certification industry. Tom uses AWS daily to run several businesses websites and operate test labs used for content creation and management, among other things. Tom’s teaching style is casual; he wants you to have fun while you learn practical applications of AWS. Join our class now and let us know how you plan to use AWS in your personal or professional life!



  • Start with Part 1 – AWS Essentials

  • If you’re totally new to AWS and looking for a crash course in the foundations, I would recommend starting at the beginning of this course with Essentials Chapter 1 – AWS Foundations and Services and watching the first 12 episodes.

  • Once you’ve got the basics down, keep on the learning path and start the AWS Solutions Architect – Associate video course, which begins at Chapter 1 – AWS Cloud Services Overview.


  • Start with Part 2 – AWS Solutions Architect – Associate

  • Maybe you’re a seasoned network tech, or if you’re already familiar with the AWS foundations, you might jump straight into the AWS Solutions Architect – Associate videos, which begin at Chapter 1 – AWS Cloud Services Overview.

  • If you need a refresher at any time, feel free to go back to the beginning of the course and take a look at the AWS Essentials videos, which begin with Essentials Chapter 1 – AWS Foundations and Services.

Not sure which AWS course to choose on Udemy? Check out our features and benefits:


  • 2-for-1 course! This course included both: AWS Technical Essentials and AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate.

  • Over 18 hours of content and 17 downloadable resources, including PDF notes on every chapter.

  • The AWS Technical Essentials course is offered on AWS’s website, however you would pay a whopping $675 on their website!

  • AWS also offers a 3-day virtual classroom training for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam, however it costs $2,095!



The AWS Technical Essentials course is the first 14 episodes and mirrors the class AWS offers online. The Technical Essentials course isn’t a certification exam prep course, and doesn’t have exam domains, however here’s a list of what’s covered:

  • Terminology and concepts related to the AWS platform

  • How to navigate the AWS Management Console

  • Key concepts of AWS security measures and AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)

  • Foundational services

    • Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC), Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), and Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS)

  • Database services

    • Amazon DynamoDB and Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS)

  • Management services

    • AWS Auto Scaling, Amazon CloudWatch, Elastic Load Balancing (ELB), and AWS Trusted Advisor**

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam domains are:

  • Domain 1: Design Resilient Architectures (34%)

  • Domain 2: Define Performant Architectures (24%)

  • Domain 3: Specify Secure Applications and Architectures (26%)

  • Domain 4: Design Cost-Optimized Architectures (10%)

  • Domain 5: Define Operationally Excellent Architectures (6%)


The AWS Solutions Architect Associate certification is ideal for those working in roles such as:

  • Solutions Architect

  • Development Operations (DevOps) Engineer

  • Software Engineer

  • Site Reliability Engineer (SRE)

  • Data Engineer

  • Senior Solutions Architect**







Essentials Chapter 1 - AWS Foundations and Services

So You Wanna be an AWS Rock Star?

Have you heard the term "cloud" and wondered just what it means in relation to computers and applications? If so, this episode will give you the low down on cloud computing and what it's all about.

What's in a Name?

What does the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud have to offer? In this episode, you'll learn about the key services offered by AWS and how Amazon makes these services available all over the world.

Ready, Set, Go

Where do I start? It's the most common question when first getting into Amazon Web Services (AWS). In this episode, you'll begin by creating a free AWS account that you can use to explore and learn all about this amazing cloud service.

Exploring the Management Console

Learning a new interface can be challenging. Amazon Web Services (AWS) has much to offer, which can make the console hard to understand at first; however, in this episode, you'll gain an understanding for the console and its components so that you can navigate the interface with ease.

Creating an S3 Bucket

The Simple Storage Service (S3) gives you storage in the cloud at any scale and with varying costs. This episode introduces the creation of S3 buckets (containers for your storage in the cloud).

Creating an EC2 Instance

What if you could run a server in the cloud and fully manage it the way you want? You can do exactly that with Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) instances and this episode shows you how.

AWS Databases

You've probably used dozens or hundreds of databases in your life - even if you didn't know you were. It's a place to put your data. Amazon Web Services (AWS) has a rich database solution that you'll explore in this episode.

Other Cool Services

In addition to storage, compute, and database services, Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers scalability and monitoring. In this episode, you'll learn about the services that offer this in the cloud.

Essentials Chapter 1 - AWS Foundations and Services

Essentials Chapter 2 - AWS Security & Costs


When you start using Amazon Web Services (AWS), you'll begin with a single account. Eventually, you'll need many more accounts as you grow. Identity and Access Management (IAM) services give you what you need to manage these accounts and you'll discover the basic concepts in this episode.

AWS Costs

You want to spend as little as possible to get the services you need. In this episode, you'll explore cost options within Amazon Web Services (AWS) and how you can keep those costs down.

AWS Documentation

In this course, you've started down the path to learning about Amazon Web Services (AWS); however, you may need more help and information as you go. AWS documentation is just what the doctor ordered and this episode will show you how to use it.

AWS Certification Path

At this point, you're probably wondering what certification might look like in relation to Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS certifications are hot right now and you'll understand the various certifications available, and their differences, in this episode.

Essentials Chapter 2 - AWS Security & Costs

Solutions Architect Chapter 1 - AWS Cloud Services Overview

Cloud Computing Defined

What exactly is cloud computing? In this episode, you will learn the answer to this important question and discover some examples of cloud computing service providers.

Benefits of Cloud Computing

Why move to the cloud? This episode provides an overview of the benefits of cloud computing. You can save money, time and headaches when moving to the cloud.

Cloud Computing Models

You may be wondering how you can use the cloud. Do you have to move everything to the cloud or just some solutions? What do the buzzwords like IaaS, Paas, and SaaS mean? You will find out in this episode.


Amazon Web Services (AWS) has been around for more than a decade. To understand where we are, it is often helpful to see from where we've come. This episode takes you on a historic tour of AWS.


Throughout this course, you will hear about compute services, storage services, database services, and networking services. The Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform provides all of these and this platform is explored in this episode.

Services, Part 1

In this first part of two episodes, you will begin exploring the Amazon Web Services (AWS) offerings. By browsing through the services list in the AWS console, we can explore everything AWS has to offer.

Services, Part 2

This episode continues the Amazon Web Services (AWS) offerings tour finishing up where we left off in the last episode. By the end of this episode, you will have a birds-eye view of the AWS services.

Security and Compliance

Have you wondered how you can secure the solutions you run in Amazon Web Services (AWS)? This is a valid concern and you will begin to learn the answer to this important question in this episode.

Regions and Availability

Where is Amazon Web Services (AWS)? The answer is: everywhere. AWS is deployed in various regions around the globe with datacenters in these regions. Additionally, many regions have multiple Availability Zones (AZs). This episode explains the terminology of regions and AZs.

Solutions Architect Chapter 1 - AWS Cloud Services Overview Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 2 - AWS Storage Design

Storage Services

Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers many storage functions. Many cloud services offer storage alone, but AWS offers advanced storage services and many compute services as will. This episode introduces the array of storage services offered.

S3 Storage Class

S3 is the primary file or object storage service in Amazon Web Services (AWS). What can you do with S3? This episode explains the basic concepts of S3 storage and management.

S3 Terminology

Like any technology, S3 has unique terminology associated with it. If you hope to understand and implement S3 well, you must understand this terminology and this episode will provide you with definitions of key S3 terms.

S3 Advanced Features

Can you do more than simply store files in S3 buckets? You definitely can and this episode explores some of the more advanced features of S3.

Creating S3 Buckets Lab

Would you like to see S3 in action? This episode demonstrates the process of creating S3 buckets and then using those buckets for object (file) storage.

S3 Bucket Properties

Each S3 bucket has a collection or properties associated with it. These properties are explored in this episode.

S3 Managing Objects Lab

After you have objects (files) in an S3 bucket, you have to manage these objects. Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides several management functions for the objects in S3 buckets and they are explored in this episode.


What if you want to store data for a very long time and you do not need to access that data immediately when it is needed? Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides a less expensive storage solution for this kind of data. It is called Glacier and it is introduced in this episode.

Setting up a Glacier Vault Lab

Now that you understand Glacier as a concept, it's time to explore the process of creating Glacier storage. This storage is called a vault with archives. This episode demonstrates their creation and use.

Elastic Block Store (EBS)

While S3 and Glacier can be used to store files, what do you do when you need storage for a virtual machine (an instance) in Amazon Web Services (AWS)? The answer is found in the AWS Elastic Block Store (EBS) service. This episdoe introduces the concepts of EBS.

Creating EBS Volumes Lab

After understanding the EBS concepts, you can begin creating and using EBS volumes. This demonstration will show you how.

Elastic File System (EFS)

Do you need to store data in your Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud that can be accessed by multiple AWS virtual machines (instances)? If so, you need something like a Storage Area Network (SAN) in the cloud. The Elastic File System (EFS) provides this service and this episode introduces the EFS service and features.

Creating an EFS File System Lab

Now that you know what the Elastic File System (EFS) offers, you can begin working with it in Amazon Web Services (AWS). This episode demonstrates the creation of an EFS share.

Integrating On-Premises Storage

Have you considered how you might integrate storage at your location with Amazon Web Services (AWS) storage? This episode introduces the AWS features that allow you to integrate storage in this way.

Storage Access Security Lab

It's one thing to create storage solutions in Amazon Web Services (AWS). It's another thing to ensure their security. In this episode, you will explore the storage security features of AWS, including the console and CLI.

Storage Performance

In the final episode of this chapter, you will explore the important topic of performance related to storage. It's not enough to have the storage space you require. You must also be able to access at the speed you desire. The key is in selecting the proper volume type (for EBS) or storage class (for S3) and this episode gives you the information required to make this decision.

Solutions Architect Chapter 2 - AWS Storage Design Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 3 - Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) Overview

An organization can run their own cloud solutions internally and this is called a private cloud. AWS provides the same concept in their cloud and they call it the Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). This episode introduces the VPC concept.

Creating a VPC Lab

With an understanding of the AWS Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), you can begin creating them. This episode shows you how to create and use a VPC.

Configuring DHCP Options Lab

You can configure some DHCP options for the devices that participate in your VPC. This episode shows you how to configure these options.

Elastic IP Addresses

With default configurations, AWS instances use private IP addresses that are not routable on the Internet. What do you do if you need a public address that works directly on the Internet without a NAT device? This episod answers the question by introducing Elastic IP addresses.

Elastic Network Interfaces (ENIs)

Virtual serviers need virtual network interfaces. In AWS these interfaces are called Elastic Network Interfaces (ENIs). This episode introduces the concept and use of ENIs.


What if you want services to access other services indirectly? You can use endpoints. Unlike the traditional use of the term in networking, AWS uses the term endpoint to refer to something different. This episode explains how AWS uses the term.

VPC Peering

When you have more than one VPC, you may want thm connected to one another so instances in one can talk to instances in another and vice versa. This episode explains how this is done with VPC peering.

Creating a VPC Peering Connection Lab

After gaining an understanding of the VPC peering concept, you can explore the process of creating a VPC peer. This episode provides an overview of th VPC peer creation process.

Security Groups Overview

If you have worked around networking for just a little while, you've probably heard of groups or security groups. AWS offers security groups, but they are different from the traditional concept and this episode explains how.

Network Address Translation (NAT)

When you want devices with a private IP address to communicate across the Internet, you will need a Network Address Translation device or server. This episode introduces the concept of NAT in AWS.

Gateways (VPGs and CGWs)

Do you want to connect your local network into AWS in a seemingly permanent way that is also secure? If so, you need to understand VPGs and CGWs, the topic of this episode.

Solutions Architect Chapter 3 - Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 4 - Compute Services Design

EC2 Overview

Cloud computing is all the buzz today, but what is the service in AWS that allows for this? The answer is EC2 and this episode introduces the concepts around the EC2 service.

EC2 Instance Types

When you launch an EC2 instance, you must consider more than just the Amazon Machine Image (AMI) to use. You must also determine the instance type or class to use so that you can achieve optimum performance. For this reason, it is important to undersand the contents of this episode.

EC2 Pricing

Pricing for EC2 instances varies greatly within AWS. The most impacting factors in EC2 pricing are instance types/classes in use and the pricing category chosen as discussed in this episode.

EBS and EC2

Elastic Block Store is your "hard drive" in the cloud. This episode introduces the use of an EBS volume in AWS.

Solutions Architect Chapter 4 - Compute Services Design Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 5 - Compute Services Implementation

Launching an EC2 Linux Instance Lab

Want to know how to create a Linux-based EC2 instance in AWS? This is the episode for you. You'll see the process from start-to-finish.

Configuring an EC2 Linux Instance Lab

After implementing the Linux instance, you'll need to know a bit about configuring. This episode takes you through some important instance configuration tasks.

Setting up an EC2 Windows Instance Lab

How about a Windows instance running in AWS? This episode provides a demonstration of the processes used to instantiate a Windows instance in AWS.

Shared Tenancy

You may have heard the phrase "shared instance," but what does it mean? You'll understand after watching this episide. Grasp the concept and the way it's implement in AWS here.

Dedicated Hosts

In addition to shares instances, AWS offered dedicated hosts and dedicated instances. In this episode and the next, dedicated hosts and instances are explored.

Dedicated Instances

Dedicated instances are the final "special" kind of AWS EC2 instance. This episode explains their operation.

AMI Virtualization

After launching and configuring a few EC2 instances from AMIs, you're probably beginning to wonder about the datails of these instance images. In this episode, you will explore the details of AMIs and how they can be created as well.

Solutions Architect Chapter 5 - Compute Services Implementation Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 6 - Compute Services Management

Instance Management

In the preceding chapter, you explored the basics of creating and configuring EC2 instances. In this first episode of Chapter 6, you will begin to explore the ongoing management of EC2 instances.

Connecting to Instances Lab

In addition to managing the instance properties in AWS itself, you will need to know how to remotely connect to the instance guest operating system to manage it. This episode explains how to make these remote connections.

Working with Security Groups

You might wonder how you can control who has access to the EC2 instances you implement. One method is with the use of security groups and this episode introduces the concept.

Working with Security Groups Lab

To assist you in understanding security groups, this episode will demonstrate their creation and use.

Elastic Container Service (ECS)

At times, you might want to run some code in AWS without having to launch, configure, upgrade, and manage entire EC2 instances. You may be able to do this with the Elastic Container Service and this episode explains how.

Elastic Beanstalk Environment

If you would like to have an expert AWS administrator available to you at any time, consider the Elastic beanstalk service. It's not a real administrator, but it's as close as it gets within AWS and it can launch and mage EC2 instances for you.

Solutions Architect Chapter 6 - Compute Services Management Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 7 - Identity and Access Management (IAM)

Identity and Access Management (IAM) Overview

How do you control who or what has access to your AWS account and the services running in it? The answer is Identity and Access Management (IAM) and this episode introduces the fundamental concepts of IAM.


With any identity and access management solution, it is essential to understand the principals that can be managed, such as users and groups. This episode introduces you to the principals you will manage in AWS.

Root User

In operating systems it is common to have a root or admin user. In AWS a root users exists as well. You must understand this root user account and the implications it introduces to management and use of AWS.


AWS provides two primary authentication methods (though more can be implemented) and these are covered in this episode. Additionally, you will learn the basics of authentication.

Authorization Policies

Once authenticated, the user will have full capabilities or limited capabilities based on permissions within AWS. A primary method of permission management is authorization policy, which is covered here.

Multi-Factor Authentication

What if you don't trust a single authentication method, such as a username and password pair? Then you can use multi-factor authentication, which is presented in this episode.

Key Rotation

When using an access key and secret access key it is important to rotate them periodically. Key rotation principles are covered in this episode including the processes involved.

Multiple Permissions

To understand practical permissions you must understand multiple permissions. Permissions can come from multiple sources and they aggregate to form practical or applied permissions. In this episode, you will explore multiple permissions.

AWS Compliance Program

AWS implements templates and recommended architectures that comply with various regulatory constraints under the AWS compliance program. This episode introduces the compliance program and reveals where you can get detailed information about regulations with which you must comply.

Shared Responisbility Model

The final topic of this chapter is the shared responsibility model. AWS does not have full responsibility for the security of your cloud deployment. However, neither do you. Instead a shared responsibility model is used and it is covered here.

Solutions Architect Chapter 7 - Identity and Access Management (IAM) Quiz

Solutions Architect Chapter 8 - IAM Best Practices

User Accounts

As we move forward with a foundational understanding of IAM from chapter 7, we will begin exploring practical application in this chapter. Here in episode one, we will discuss best practices and tasks involved in user account creation and management.

Password Policies

With your user accounts, you will want to have strong passwords. AWS can help you with this through the implementation of password policies and you will learn how to use them in this episode.

Credential Rotation

An additional factor is credential rotation. You will learn about this process and how to configure password rotation policies in this episode.

Principle of Least Privelege

One of the biggest and most common mistakes made in security management is granting too many permissions to a user. The principle of least privilege can assist in preventing this and it is covered in this episode.

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