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February 8, 2018

How to Draw AWS Architecture Diagrams Online

Diagrams for Software Engineering

Gliffy is an easy-to-use diagramming app and AWS diagram tool. Get started with a free trial in Gliffy Online or learn more about our Atlassian apps, then follow along with this tutorial to learn how to make your own AWS architecture diagram.

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Excited to get started? Jump ahead to one of these sections:

What is an AWS Architecture Diagram?

AWS architecture refers to the technological structure of how a team or organization uses services provided by Amazon Web Services. AWS is Amazon’s Cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (Cloud IaaS) offering. AWS Architecture Diagrams visually describe how that infrastructure is set up.

AWS provides on-demand solutions for data storage and movement, and fills a wide array of IT needs, allowing companies to scale up instantly and only pay for what they need. This means that there are thousands of possible combinations and configurations of solutions, so describing your decisions and overall infrastructure with an architecture diagram is important. You may also hear these diagrams called AWS network diagrams. 

An AWS diagram will show, at a glance, how these services interact with each other to support your organization.

🔎  Want more explanation? Check out our AWS Architecture Diagram Examples blog for detailed examples or become an expert on all things cloud in with our complete guide to Cloud Architecture Diagrams.

Why You Should Visualize Your AWS Architecture with an AWS Network Diagram

It's important to visualize your cloud architecture because it helps you understand, evaluate, and optimize the infrastructure that supports your business. Gliffy runs on AWS and our team documents changes to our infrastructure using Gliffy diagrams. Having this documentation on-hand can help you share with non-technical or external partners if something goes wrong or as your organization evaluates changes. 

One of the biggest reasons to create an AWS architecture diagram with Gliffy is because there are specific shapes or logos associated with the services provided by Amazon. Gliffy comes with these pre-loaded, making it easy to search for and find the icons that match the services your team relies on. AWS Simple Icons fall into several categories including compute icons, storage icons, database icons, and networking and content delivery icons

Using Gliffy to create other types of cloud architecture diagrams like AWS diagrams, GCP architecture diagrams, or Azure architecture diagrams also makes it easy to share with your teammates and track revision history as you make changes.

Video: AWS Architecture Diagram Tutorial

Step-by-Step: How to Create an AWS Diagram in Gliffy

With Gliffy, the easiest AWS architecture diagram tool, making an AWS diagram is fast and simple. So simple, we'll show you how to do it in 4 steps.

AWS architecture diagram

Step 1: Open AWS Shapes

To create an AWS diagram in Gliffy, start by scrolling down to the "more shapes" section of the shape library and select "AWS simple icons." This pre-loads the logos for AWS services that you'll need to include in your diagram. You can drag and drop them onto the canvas from the panel on the left.

Not familiar with these icons? Learn more in our blog about AWS simple icons.

More AWS shapes library

Step 2: Create a Base for Your AWS Network Diagram

Use basic and flowchart shapes to create your base structure and decide how to lay out your diagram. You can change the line width, pattern and color by clicking on your shape and making changes in the pop up window.

By "creating a base," this would mean creating containers or sections for specific availability zones or subnets. It's also a good idea to create a specific region for your AWS services, then show how external services or users are able to interact with it. Check out our page of AWS architecture examples to see how the additional shapes and structure helps clarify the diagram.

Step 3: Draw Your AWS Architecture Diagram 

Once your structure is in place, simply drag and drop the AWS shapes you need. If you’d like to add logos of other services you use in conjunction with AWS, it’s easy to add them to the Gliffy canvas by finding the images online then dragging and dropping them directly onto your canvas. You can save time by starting with an AWS architecture diagram template.

Learn more about adding your own shapes to Gliffy with this tutorial >>

Step 4: Share the AWS Architecture

Once your diagram is complete, you can share it with your coworkers and select whether they can view, edit or comment on it. Click the share button in the upper right to generate a sharable link or embed your diagram in popular tools like Slack, Trello, or Basecamp.

Not seeing a shape you need? You can also download Amazon’s latest shapes here and drag and drop them into Gliffy or upload your own custom library.

Draw AWS Architecture Diagrams with Gliffy

Get started today with a free trial in Gliffy Online or check out our apps for Confluence and Jira.

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