Serverless Reference Architecture for creating an IoT Backend
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README.md

Serverless Reference Architecture: IoT Backend

The Internet of Things (IoT) Backend reference architecture (diagram) demonstrates how to use AWS Lambda in conjunction with Amazon Kinesis, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), and Amazon CloudWatch to build a serverless system for ingesting and processing sensor data. By leveraging these services, you can build cost-efficient applications that can meet the massive scale required for processing the data generated by huge deployments of connected devices.

This repository contains sample code for all the Lambda functions depicted in this diagram as well as a AWS CloudFormation template for creating the functions and related resources. There is also a simple webpage that you can run locally to publish sample events and query the data from DynamodDB.

Running the Example

The entire example system can be deployed in us-east-1 using the provided CloudFormation template and an S3 bucket. If you would like to deploy the template to a different region, you must copy the Lambda deployment packages under the iot-backend prefix in the awslambda-reference-architectures bucket to a new S3 bucket in your target region. You can then provide this new bucket as a parameter when launching the template.

Choose Launch Stack to launch the template in the us-east-1 region in your account:

Launch Lambda IoT Backend into North Virginia with CloudFormation

Testing the Example

You can use the test webpage to test the system as follows:

  1. Save the testpage.html file to your local system.
  2. Open the downloaded file with a text editor and fill in the configuration values using the outputs of the CloudFormation stack launched in the previous section.
  3. Open your edited copy of testpage.html using a web browser of your choice.

After you launch the test page, you can simulate the submission of sensor data from multiple devices, as well as query the DynamoDB table for the historical data of a given device. In addition to using the test page to query DynamoDB, you can check the CloudWatch metrics published under the Sensor namespace.

Cleaning Up the Example Resources

To remove all resources created by this example, do the following:

  1. Delete all objects from the ArchiveBucket created by the CloudFormation stack.
  2. Delete the CloudFormation stack.
  3. Delete all CloudWatch log groups for each of the Lambda functions in the stack.

CloudFormation Template Resources

The following sections explain all of the resources created by the CloudFormation template provided with this example.

Lambda functions

  • ApiFunction - A Lambda function that provides a simple API for querying the sensor data stored in the SensorDataTable.

  • DdbCloudWatchEventProcessorFunction - A Lambda function that processes events from EventStream and persists them to both the SensorDataTable and a custom CloudWatch metric under the Sensor namespace.

  • EventArchiverFunction - A Lambda function that processes events from EventStream and archives the raw data in ArchiveBucket.

Function roles

  • ApiExecutionRole - An AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) role assumed by the ApiFunction. This role provides logging permissions and access to query SensorDataTable. It also enables the function to call GetFunction in order to read configuration data from the function's description.

  • DdbCloudWatchProcessorRole - An IAM role assumed by the DdbCloudWatchEventProcessorFunction. This role provides permissions for logging, writing items to SensorDataTable, and publishing custom CloudWatch metrics. It also enables the function to call GetFunction in order to read configuration data from the function's description.

  • EventArchiverRole - An IAM role assumed by the EventArchiverRole. This role provides logging permissions and access to put objects to ArchiveBucket. It also enables the function to call GetFunction in order to read configuration data from the function's description.

Event source mappings

  • DdbCloudWatchProcessorSourceMapping - An event source mapping that enables DdbCloudWatchEventProcessorFunction to process records from EventStream.

  • EventArchiverSourceMapping - An event source mapping that enables EventArchiverFunction to process records from EventStream.

IAM Users and Policies

  • TestClientUser - An IAM user used by the test webpage.

  • TestClientPolicy - An IAM policy attached to TestClientUser that grants access to put records on the EventStream and invoke the ApiFunction.

  • TestClientKeys - Access keys that enable the test webpage to sign API requests in order to simulate device events and query the SensorDataTable.

Other Resources

  • EventStream - An Amazon Kinesis stream to receive the raw sensor data.

  • SensorDataTable - A DynamoDB table to store the processed sensor data.

  • ArchiveBucket - An S3 Bucket for archiving the raw sensor data.

Configuration

  • ConfigTable - A DynamoDB table to hold configuration values read by the various Lambda functions. The name of this table, "IoTRefArchConfig", is hard coded into each function's code and cannot be modified without updating the code as well.

  • ConfigHelperStack - A sub-stack that creates a custom resource for writing entries to the ConfigTable. This stack creates a Lambda function and execution role that grants UpdateItem permission on the ConfigTable.

  • SensorDataTableConfig - A configuration entry that identifies the SensorDataTable name.

  • ArchiveBucketConfig - A configuration entry that identifies the ArchiveBucket name.

License

This reference architecture sample is licensed under Apache 2.0.