Provisioning and managing cloud infrastructure with Pulumi

Posted by Donna Malayeri on Jul 20, 2018 12:17:12 PM
Donna Malayeri
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If you’ve been following the blog, you know that Pulumi is great for building serverless applications, container-based applications, and a combination of the two. But, did you know that you can manage any cloud resource in AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud Platform?

You can use the @pulumi/aws, @pulumi/azure, or @pulumi/gcp libraries to manage cloud resources. Using these libraries, you can directly manage the properties of any cloud resource.

For example, in just a few lines of code, you can provision a security group and an EC2 instance:

let group = new aws.ec2.SecurityGroup("web-secgrp", { 
    ingress: [
        { protocol: "tcp", fromPort: 22, toPort: 22, cidrBlocks: [""] },

let server = new aws.ec2.Instance("web-server-www", {
    instanceType: "t2.micro",
    securityGroups: [ ],   // reference the group object above
    ami: "ami-7172b611",

Next, let’s add a a CloudWatch metric alarm that is triggered when when the CPU utilization is over 80%:

const metricAlarm = new aws.cloudwatch.MetricAlarm("mymetricalarm", {
    comparisonOperator: "GreaterThanOrEqualToThreshold",
    evaluationPeriods: 2,
    metricName: "CPUUtilization",
    namespace: "AWS/EC2",
    period: 120,
    statistic: "Average",
    threshold: 80,
    alarmDescription: "This metric monitors ec2 cpu utilization"

In addition to alerting, you may want to provision a CloudWatch dashboard to have a single monitoring view for all your application resources. You can define this dashboard directly in code using Pulumi. The following code defines a dashboard and specifies the widgets to include:

const dashboard = new aws.cloudwatch.Dashboard("mydashboard", {
    dashboardName: "my-dashboard",
    dashboardBody: JSON.stringify({
        widgets: [
              type: "metric",
              x: 0,
              y: 0,
              width: 12,
              height: 6,
              properties: {
                  metrics: [
                  period: 300,
                  stat: "Average",
                  region: "us-east-1",
                  title: "EC2 Instance CPU"

Perhaps you want to post to an SNS topic whenever a user signs in to the AWS console for your production account. This requires provisioning three resources: the SNS topic, a CloudWatch event rule, and a CloudWatch event target. With Pulumi, this can all be specified with just a few lines of JavaScript:

const loginsTopic = new aws.sns.Topic("myloginstopic");

const eventRule = new aws.cloudwatch.EventRule("myeventrule", {
    eventPattern: JSON.stringify({
        "detail-type": [
            "AWS Console Sign In via CloudTrail"

const eventTarget = new aws.cloudwatch.EventTarget("myeventtarget", {
    targetId: "SendToSNS",
    arn: loginsTopic.arn

These are just a few examples of the AWS resources you can manage in Pulumi. You can provision Athena databases, DynamoDB tables, IAM users, roles, groups, and role policies, Kinesis streams, and more.

To learn more, take a look at the @pulumi/aws reference documentation and the sample code that provisions a variety of infrastructure resources.

Topics: JavaScript, AWS, Infrastructure

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