Via my blog subscriptions I picked this wiki article on getting started with Lotus Domino for Amazon Web Services (IBM Lotus Domino 8.5.1 on Amazon Web Services: A getting started guide) and decided to look into it. The availability of Lotus Domino on AWS was announced at Lotusphere 2010 so this was a good opportunity to look into it.
The setup steps in the wiki article are easy to follow although the Lotus Domino image isn’t available in the Europe region “data center”. I had to choose US East or US West to be able to select the Lotus Domino AMI (read: “image”). For testing that isn’t an issue but for production you need to consider network latency to your server. If you have other existing AWS servers it may also be an issue as data transfer within the same region is free but isn’t among regional centers which can become costly for maintenance operations etc.
Besides that it looks slick and allows you to easily setup test servers based on templates. Also you only pay for servers as long as they are running so it might be a nice way to test big deployment scenarios. As mentioned earlier on this blog there are a lot of other IBM templates as well (for DB2, Tivoli, Websphere etc.).
Note that Amazon is not alone in this space. As you might have seen in the showcase at Lotusphere Group is also promoting their GroupLive platform as a service (PaaS) product. Some European companies might want to partner with a European company than with an American company.