AWS CloudFormation is a vital cog in provisioning and managing AWS assets in a templated and redundant manner with infrastructure as code (IaC). However, creating a CloudFormation template involves filling in a series of parameters for every resource to be defined in a deployment stack. In order for the operators to know the best practice criteria for every resource, AWS CloudFormation modules are used to improve reusability and ensure best practice values are followed across multiple CloudFormation templates.

What are AWS CloudFormation Modules?

The role of AWS CloudFormation Modules is to predefine best practices so that you don’t have to while you set up your CloudFormation templates. This includes best practice configurations that teams can use across their templates. Also used as a native CloudFormation resource, the modules can be found in CloudFormation registry.

AWS CloudFormation Modules Use Cases

While AWS has created several modules for the operators to get used to the new feature, there are several use cases for AWS Modules.

1. Community-Driven Modules: AWS offers a public repository for community driven modules that will expand the reach of AWS and AWS-native tools. This calls for leveraging best practices criteria right away as organizations adopt more tools and decrease time to market.

2. Company-Driven Public Modules: Organizations can publish their products as public AWS modules to enable their customers, embedding product deployments in customers’ templates.

3. Company-Driven Private Modules: In order to accelerate the development teams through reusability of IaC and achieve best practices, organizations can create their own set of modules with best practices.

Advantages of AWS Modules

Apart from being able to share modules within the organization, CloudFormation modules offer better transparency and visibility. With the help of new modules, AWS addresses visibility issues by leveraging CloudFormation nested stacks.

How AWS Modules can improve IaC Reusability?

With AWS CloudFormation modules still in their infancy, organizations would like to see added macro support within modules. Moreover, modules don’t currently solve issues with maximum template size. The CloudFormation quotas apply to the processed template whether the resources included come from modules or not.

Despite the shortcomings, AWS CloudFormation Modules are a strong contender to Hashicorp Terraform and AWS Cloud Development Kit (CDK) for any organization’s solution portfolio development. Should you start using AWS CloudFormation today, you can start using the new modules feature to improve reusability and modularity without migrating to another solution. Businesses have already turned to IaC to grow their infrastructure modularity, codify best practices and enhance consistency through version control. The AWS CloudFormation Modules will help you reap maximum rewards, while boosting productivity and time to market.

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Sreyesh Sarma