I decided to see what it would take to move my current WordPress.com blog to AWS. After a quick Google search I found Greg Wilson’s post on moving his GregsRamblings.com blog from WordPress to an AWS micro instance. His post provides an excellent description of what is involved in making such a move. I also encountered Ishan’s post on how to set up a free WordPress blog on Amazon’s EC2 free tier, and Ryan Geyer’s post, “How to host WordPress for Free” and set up via RightScale (note: I’m a big RightScale fan).
However, for many SMBs and individual bloggers this is still too complex an approach (personally, I’m looking forward to the day one can drag and drop a blog from one provider to another) so I sought out an easier way to make the move.
In comes BitNami’s Cloud Hosting service to the rescue!
With a BitNami WordPress stack*, now you too can feel like a world-class administrator (with a little help from BitNami) and can brag to your less technically oriented friends that you setup WordPress on a LAMP stack in Amazon’s EC2 Cloud. You should note that there is also a BitNami WordPress stack on Amazon Web Services, but here I’m referring to their Cloud Hosting service which doesn’t require any command line instructions. Below is a 7 minute demo to give you an idea of their capabilities.
*A stack is an integrated software bundle that includes a web application and all of its required components (web server, database, language runtime), so it is ready to run out of the virtual box.
So instead of just writing about it, I decided to sign up for their free 30 day trial and give it a shot. After 1 hour I had my WordPress installation running on Amazon EC2 – ok, ok, it was really less than 10 minutes (my 3 kids kept distracting me) and 50 minutes looking through 40+ pages of WordPress themes and hundreds of plugins.
Interestingly, in exploring RightScale a week or two ago, I had linked my AWS account, and in setting up BitNami I also linked my AWS account. When I launched the EC2 instance via BitNami, I not only received a BitNami notification, but one from RightScale as well.
I have yet to find an easier way to do this than using BitNami’s service, but if you happen to know one, I’d love to hear about it. Perhaps that’s why Siemens, GoGrid, RightScale, Deloitte, Yale, IBM, Sony, Bank of America, and many others are BitNami users.
As for me, while I enjoyed the BitNami+WordPress+EC2 experience and putting this post together; with a full-time job, part-time blogging, and 3 kids, I just don’t have the bandwidth to work through the necessary fine tuning; after all, I have many more Cloud solutions to research and dozens of posts to write.
Full Disclosure: BitNami offered to host my blog free for a year if I wrote a review (either positive or negative). I have not taken them up on their offer (the free hosting that is), but may in the future – if I ever find the time.