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2020-03-05T08:39:35Z
Julia Frohwein - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Director of Delivery at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
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What needs improvement with AWS CloudFormation?

Please share with the community what you think needs improvement with AWS CloudFormation.

What are its weaknesses? What would you like to see changed in a future version?

4
PeerSpot user
4 Answers
OB
Cloud Site Reliability Engineer and SecOps Lead at a wellness & fitness company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 10
2021-01-09T00:16:43Z
09 January 21

CloudFormation is not particularly good at handling cross-account dynamic references. If you try to refer to an object that CloudFormation has created in a separate AWS account, it tends to fall apart. That's because it is a byproduct of the multi-tenant configuration. This is the most glaring shortcoming in my perspective because you can't dynamically reference objects in other accounts that CloudFormation has created, but it is not a shortcoming that you can't overcome. This is the only pain point that I've come across that didn't have a workaround natively. Sometimes the confirmation is slow, and it could be faster. The downside to CloudFormation when you're fully embracing it is that the AWS services do not get released immediately fully CloudFormation enabled. If you need to use the latest AWS service that just got announced or reinvented, you're not going to be able to continue with CloudFormation for the first X number of months. This is because they develop the products separately, and then they hand it to the CloudFormation team, which later on develops a CloudFormation integration. So, if you need to be on the newest thing AWS has, CloudFormation is often going to be a constraint that prevents you from doing that.

DD
Principal with 51-200 employees
Real User
Top 10
2020-11-03T07:15:11Z
03 November 20

The one bit of a drawback is that CloudFormation is, only, available in AWS. When I have to work on other clouds or somebody has a configuration to be done on-prem Data Center, there's no way for me to use it. It is what it is, AWS does not apparently intend to make this available all over. The three big players in this area are Ansible, Terraform, and CloudFormation — except CloudFormation can only be used on AWS ! I would like to see less verbosity and better isolation. One area that may be improved would be using variables as parameters in templates. This would make it a lot more flexible. I don't know how soon that's going to happen because I'm trying to think from a developer's point of view - the guys that actually have to write and support all these features that I dream about. Frankly, to evolve it but also maintain compatibility with what's in place now, may be a serious challenge.

SA
Multi-Cloud Consulting at a construction company with 5,001-10,000 employees
MSP
2020-03-16T06:56:22Z
16 March 20

The customization is weak. Whether it is good or not depends on the customer's use case. The solution needs to offer better support to other cloud vendors. The solution requires Kubernetes support including container ops and staging support.

AB
Infrastructure - Presales & Solution Consultant at a tech company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
2020-03-05T08:39:35Z
05 March 20

This tool is not intuitive and there are others that are easier to understand. It is very powerful but it can be developed to make it much easier to use. The learning curve is pretty steep. Unless you have been working with it for a long time, looking at a CloudFormation template is a tough job. The aim should be usability for a person with a non-coding background. There is a lot of syntax and components that require you to look at the documentation, whereas with the inclusion of a few drop-down menus and choices, it would be much easier to work with. You can have CloudFormation create a template based on your existing infrastructure, but not all of the services are included. For example, if you manually set up an environment and you have put in all of the scaling information then you can extract the entire infrastructure and get back a template. CloudFormation is then capable of recreating the environment but it might not have the scaling included automatically.

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Related Questions
Miriam Tover - PeerSpot reviewer
Service Delivery Manager at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Jan 09, 2021
Hi Everyone, What do you like most about AWS CloudFormation? Thanks for sharing your thoughts with the community!
2 out of 4 answers
AB
Infrastructure - Presales & Solution Consultant at a tech company with 5,001-10,000 employees
05 March 20
There is a cost-benefit to using CloudFormation that comes about because of the automation that it provides.
SA
Multi-Cloud Consulting at a construction company with 5,001-10,000 employees
16 March 20
The integration of the solution is very good.
Ariel Lindenfeld - PeerSpot reviewer
Director of Content at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Dec 06, 2016
Let the community know what you think. Share your opinions now!
See 1 answer
PeerSpot user
Systems Specialist, Development, D2C DevOps Architecture at a retailer with 1,001-5,000 employees
06 December 16
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