Introducing Bob’s Used Books—a New, Actual-World, .NET Pattern Utility

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As we speak, I’m blissful to announce {that a} new open-source pattern utility, a fictitious used books eCommerce retailer we name Bob’s Used Books, is offered for .NET builders working with AWS. The .NET advocacy and growth groups at AWS discuss to prospects recurrently and, throughout these conversations, usually obtain requests for extra in-depth samples. Prospects inform us that, whereas small code snippets serve effectively for example the mechanics of an API, their growth groups additionally want and need to make use of fuller, extra real-world samples to know higher methods to assemble fashionable functions for the cloud. As we speak’s pattern utility launch is in response to these requests.

Bob’s Used Books is a pattern eCommerce utility constructed utilizing ASP.NET Core model 6 and represents an preliminary modernization of a typical on-premises customized utility. Representing a primary stage of modernization, the appliance makes use of fashionable cross-platform .NET, enabling it to run on each Home windows and Linux methods within the cloud. It’s typical of what many .NET builders are simply now going via, porting their very own functions from .NET Framework to .NET utilizing freely obtainable instruments from AWS such because the Toolkit for .NET Refactoring and the Porting Assistant for .NET.

Bob's Used Books sample application homepage

Pattern utility options
Prospects of our fictional bookstore can browse and search on the shop for used books and consider particulars on chosen books similar to value, situation, style, and extra:

Bob's Used Books sample application search results page, which shows 8 books and their prices.


Bob's Used Books sample application book details page

Similar to an actual e-commerce retailer, prospects can add books to a purchasing cart, pending subsequent checkout, or to a private want checklist. When the time involves buy, the client can begin the checkout course of, which is able to encourage them to register if they’re an present buyer or join through the course of.

Bob's Used Books sample application checkout page

On this pattern utility, the bookstore’s workers makes use of the identical net utility to handle stock and buyer orders. Position-based authentication is used to find out whether or not it’s a workers member signing in, through which case they will view an administrative portal, or a daily retailer buyer. For workers, having accessed the admin portal, they begin with a dashboard view that summarizes pending, in-process, or accomplished orders and the state of the shop’s stock:

Bob's Used Books sample application staff dashboard page

Workers can edit stock so as to add new books, full with cowl pictures, or regulate inventory ranges. From the identical dashboard, workers also can view and course of pending orders.

Bob's Used Books sample application staff order processing page

Not proven right here, however one thing I believe is fairly cool, is a simulated workflow the place prospects can re-sell their books via the shop. This entails the client submitting an utility, the shop admin evaluating and deciding whether or not to buy from the client, the client “posting” the ebook to the shop if accepted, and at last the admin including the ebook into stock and reimbursing the client. Bear in mind, that is all fictional, nevertheless—no precise monetary transactions happen!

Utility structure
The bookstore pattern didn’t begin as a .NET Framework-based utility that wanted porting to .NET, however it does use a monolithic MVC (model-view-controller) utility design, typical of the .NET Framework growth period (and nonetheless in use at this time). It additionally makes use of a single Microsoft SQL Server database to comprise stock, purchasing cart, consumer knowledge, and extra.

Bob's Used Books sample application outline architecture

When absolutely deployed to AWS, the appliance makes use of a number of providers. These present assets to host the appliance, present configuration to the operating utility, and likewise present helpful performance to the operating code, similar to picture verification:

  • Amazon Cognito – used for buyer and bookstore workers authentication. The appliance makes use of Cognito‘s Hosted UI to offer sign-in and sign-up performance.
  • Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) – manages a single Microsoft SQL Server Categorical occasion containing stock, buyer, and different typical knowledge for an e-commerce utility.
  • Amazon Easy Storage Service (Amazon S3) – an S3 bucket is used to retailer cowl pictures for books.
  • AWS Techniques Supervisor Parameter Retailer – comprises runtime configuration knowledge, together with the identify of the S3 bucket for canopy pictures, and Cognito consumer pool particulars.
  • AWS Secrets and techniques Supervisor – holds the consumer and password particulars for the underlying SQL Server database in RDS.
  • Amazon CloudFront – supplies a site for accessing the duvet pictures within the S3 bucket, which suggests the bucket doesn’t should be publicly obtainable.
  • Amazon Rekognition – used to confirm that cowl pictures uploaded for a ebook don’t comprise objectionable content material.

The appliance is a place to begin to showcase additional modernization alternatives sooner or later, similar to adopting purpose-built databases as an alternative of utilizing a single relational database, decomposing the monolith to make use of microservices (for the latter, AWS supplies the Microservice Extractor for .NET), and extra. The .NET growth, advocacy, and resolution architect groups right here at AWS are fairly excited on the alternatives for brand spanking new content material, utilizing this pattern, for example these modernization alternatives within the upcoming months. And, because the pattern is open-source, we’re additionally to see the place the .NET growth neighborhood takes it relating to modernization.

Working the appliance
My colleague Brad Webber, a Options Architect at AWS, has written the primary in a collection of technical weblog posts we’ll be publishing in regards to the pattern. You’ll discover these on the new .NET on AWS weblog channel. In his first put up, you’ll be taught extra about methods to run or debug the appliance by yourself machine in addition to deploy it fully to the AWS cloud.

The appliance makes use of SQL Server Categorical localdb occasion for its database wants when operating exterior the cloud, which suggests you do presently should be utilizing a Home windows machine to run or debug. Launch profiles, accessible from Visible Studio, Visible Studio Code, or JetBrains Rider (all on Home windows), are used to pick how the appliance runs (for instance, with no or some cloud assets):

  • Native – When you choose this launch profile, the appliance runs fully in your machine, utilizing no cloud assets, and doesn’t want an AWS account. This lets you examine and experiment with the code incurring no expenses for cloud assets.
  • Built-in – Whenever you use this profile, the appliance nonetheless runs regionally in your Home windows machine and continues to make use of the localdb database occasion, however now additionally makes use of some AWS assets, similar to an S3 bucket, Rekognition, Cognito, and others. This profile lets you find out how you should utilize AWS providers inside your utility code, utilizing the AWS SDK for .NET and varied extension libraries that we distribute on NuGet (for a full checklist of all obtainable libraries you should utilize when creating your functions, see the .NET on AWS repository on GitHub). To allow you to arrange the cloud assets wanted by the appliance when utilizing this profile, an AWS Cloud Improvement Package (AWS CDK) undertaking is supplied within the pattern repository, making it simple to arrange and tear down these assets on demand.

Deploying the Pattern to AWS
You can even deploy the complete utility to the AWS Cloud, on this case, to digital machines in Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) with a SQL Server Categorical database occasion in Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS). The deployment makes use of assets appropriate with the AWS Free Tier however do observe, nevertheless, that you could be nonetheless incur expenses in the event you exceed the Free Tier limits. In contrast to operating the appliance by yourself machine, which requires Home windows due to the localdb dependency, you possibly can deploy the appliance to AWS from any machine, together with these operating macOS and Linux. As soon as once more, a CDK undertaking is included within the repository to get you began, and Brad’s weblog put up goes into extra element on these steps so I received’t repeat them right here.

Utilizing digital machines within the cloud is usually a primary step in modernizing on-premises functions due to similarity with an on-premises server setup, therefore the explanation for supporting Amazon EC2 deployments out-of-the-box. Sooner or later, we’ll be including content material displaying methods to deploy the appliance to container providers on AWS, similar to AWS App Runner, Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS), and Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS).

Subsequent steps
The Bob’s Used Books pattern utility is offered now on GitHub. We encourage you, in the event you’re a .NET developer engaged on AWS and on the lookout for a deeper, extra real-world pattern, to clone the repository and take the appliance for a spin. We’re additionally interested by what modernization journeys you’d determine to take with the appliance, which is able to assist us create future content material for the pattern. Tell us within the points part of the repository. And if you wish to contribute to the pattern, we welcome contributions!

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