One way you may wish to experiment with the EC2 service is to try running a basic web application in the service. In this application, we will demonstrate how to deploy a photo management application called Gallery 2 (http://gallery.menalto.com/) on an instance to give a brief overview of the steps you will need to take to set up the application in the EC2 environment. Most of these steps will be familiar to readers who already have experience running their own servers, which demonstrates the similarity between administering a physical server and one in EC2.
In addition to installing and configuring the photo management application, we will implement a basic back-up process to save the application’s data in S3. This process will protect against data loss due to instance failures by performing regular backups. We will also provide a corresponding restore process, so you can get the application up and running again quickly should your instance fail.
Although this example serves as an interesting application for an EC2 instance, we do not recommend that you run photo-sharing web sites in EC2. There are cheaper hosting services available to do simple tasks like this without the need to implement your own back-up strategy. EC2 is a better option for more sophisticated applications in which you need full control over your own servers, or where you can take advantage of the service’s ability to provide a scalable server pool to meet demand.