How to Start

Why start?  

The Cloud is more than data centers offering cheap servers and storage.  It’s a technology revolution remaking every industry and impacting our daily lives, largely unseen, but at the foundation of vast changes.  Cloud Astronauts is for anyone curious to learn what the cloud really is and how it actually works.      

Step 1: Pick a Cloud

We offer curated guides for Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure (Azure), the two leading clouds with 33% and 22% of the global cloud services market respectively. Both AWS and Azure offer free services for new user accounts.  Azure even offers a $200 credit for the first 30 days.   Start with one cloud and then compare and contrast with the other cloud later.

Step 2: Pick a Mission

Cloud Astronauts uses a space theme and so our materials are organized as missions with problems to solve on a journey to Mars or while serving at Mars Colony.   Each missions is self-contained.  You don’t have to start with Mission #1.  However, we have organized the missions to be easy at the start and get a little more challenging as you go.  

Step 3: Download the files

When you buy a mission or combo pack you will have links to download in the online confirmation page and also via email (check your junk folder).  If you come back to your account, these links will always be in your Orders history.  You must download the files within 60 days and you can do so at least two times.   You will get one zip file called Free - Blast off and Bail out for your cloud (we provide one for AWS products and one for Azure products).  You will get additional zip files for each mission you purchased (Mission Flight Packs).

Step 4: Create an Account (1x)

We make it easy to start on the cloud.  You get a free Blast Off guidebook to show you how to create an account.  Just creating an account is easy, it takes just 5 minutes.  But our Blast Off guide does more.  It shows you how to use security features like Multi-Factor Authentication (strongly recommended).  It’s not hard.   

Step 5: Run the mission - Test Pilot User Guide

To run a mission, you simply use the Test Pilot User Guide for that mission to go through the full exercise to learn about services on the cloud from deploying a website to exploring AI.  The guide has every step from start to end and includes both word descriptions and a picture for every screen used.  They range from 40-100 pages, but that is because there are 2-3 pictures on every page.  Most missions take less than an hour to complete.

Step 6: Cleanup

For every mission, we provide cleanup steps near the end of the Test Pilot User Guide.  Be diligent.  Cleanup any resources you created in order to avoid costs.  We tell you and show you how.  Cleanup keeps each mission free or very low cost.  

Step 7: Repeat

Try it again anytime you wish.  Try another mission.  Try another cloud.