Setting up an Amazon Web Services account
I chose Amazon Web Services (AWS) because it seemed like you could do practically anything with it, and could try many services free for 12 months. If the Everyone For Veterans web app (in progress) becomes popular, I wanted us to have the capability to scale up without switching hosts.
However, looking at the lists of services was daunting. There are dozens. At least they are helpfully organized. I wrote down the names and a brief description of the services I thought I'd need, and dove into CodeStar.
That was a challenge in itself, and as a result, I'm still working on setting it up. Here's what happened: I clicked on the tutorial for CodeStar, but then learned that I needed to set it up first. Ok, makes sense. Then, "Getting Started" told me I could only log in to CodeStar with an IAM user profile. What's that?
I learned about user profiles (I should have guessed about setting user permissions, but had no idea that I was working as the root user, which you are rarely supposed to do) and created an admin profile for myself. This was yet more trial and error of setting a password, as I never got a separate email with the password and was then locked out of AWS; signing in with a different browser as the root user and manually changing the IAM password finally worked.
Then, I learned that I would need EC2 credentials (again, what's that?) and so learned about access keys and went through the process again. Then, I needed to pick an IDE: Eclipse, Microsoft Visual Studio, or Command Line tools. As I'd used Eclipse in the past, I chose that first. Turns out I would need to run a legacy Java program that only went up to my previous OS. So, Eclipse was out.
I then went with Git/Command Line. AWS attempted to walk me through that, but downloading Git was not working, so I downloaded GitHub's desktop client after refreshing myself on how version control works. Luckily, GitHub has great tutorials. However, attempting to clone my AWS repository has left the GitHub Desktop "please wait" spinner going for hours now.
Will I figure it out later today? We'll see. In the meantime I will use Atom's delightful-looking text editor to craft my HTML pages, and wish that AWS had a more general onboarding than specifically tailored tutorials.