Amazon announced it has expanded the functionality of its virtual private cloud services, saying it is now possible to specify which private cloud resources can be accessed from the Internet and which can only be accessed from a virtual private network (VPN).

Amazon said the new capability opens up the Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC) to a much broader set of use cases. In the past, the VPC service could only be accessed via a VPN.

“Amazon VPC has been the first stop for many enterprises as they build migration plans to the cloud,” Peter De Santis, general manager of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), said in a statement. “The service has provided a secure bridge between an existing data center and the AWS cloud via a VPN and enables enterprises to extend their existing security and management policies to AWS.

“Starting today, enterprises can also choose to connect to AWS without a VPN, by setting up virtual networks within the AWS cloud that they can control and customize.”

In a blog, Amazon technology evangelist Jeff Barr said it is now possible to create a network topology in the AWS cloud that closely resembles the topology of a corporate data center, including public, private and DMZ subnets – layers around a network that provides extra security. “Instead of dealing with cables, routers, and switches, you can design and instantiate your network programmatically,” he said.

“You can use the AWS Management Console (including a slick new wizard), the command line tools, or the APIs. This means that you could store your entire network layout in abstract form, and then realize it on demand,” he added.

Amazon launched its VPC service in August of 2009.




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