In Drupal in the Cloud: Part 1 I went over some basic background for why I wanted to use the cloud. If you are planning on using Amazon's Web Services, or AWS, start here.
AWS is a tricky beast. Nothing is truly external, at least not without some authorization keys. I'm not going to go over signup completely, but be warned- it involves a phone call, a credit card, and your first born son. Ok, maybe not the last one, but it sure feels like it.
Once you are signed up, you'll see a bunch of services they offer. The one that we are looking for is EC2, which stands for Elastic Computing Cloud. This is essentially their "cloud server", which they refer to as an Instance.
- From the EC2 Console Dashboard, click on the Launch Instance button.
- There are three options to choose from, select the Classic Wizard and continue
- Depending on your budget and needs you can select a different instance type, but for me the 613MiB RAM Micro instance will be just fine. If you have a Zone preference you can select that as well, but the Micro instances are limited to only a few zones.
- Select the most recent Ubuntu LTS release, which is 12.04 at the time of this writing.