AWS administrators get no respect 🙂 They constantly face challenges when managing cloud infrastructure and services. We empathize with you… Here are the top 18 things that drive AWS administrators crazy.

Complex Pricing Models

AWS has a staggering array of services and complex pricing structures, making it challenging to estimate and manage costs effectively. Corey Quinn recently quipped “Did you know there are more than 350 AWS services? Nobody knows what they do, but that won’t stop them from billing you.”


Ensuring robust security practices, managing IAM, and maintaining compliance can be daunting tasks for AWS administrators.

Managing IAM Policies

Tuning IAM policies, roles, and permissions to ensure least privilege access without impacting productivity can be challenging.


Seamlessly scaling applications to handle heavy workloads while maintaining performance and cost-efficiency is no small feat.

Auto Scaling

Auto Scaling is powerful for resource optimization, but configuring it optimally and dealing with sudden scaling events can be stressful.

Elastic Load Balancing

Configuring ELB (Elastic Load Balancing) for optimal performance and fault tolerance is complicated, especially with varying traffic patterns.

Networking Complexity

AWS networking involves VPCs, subnets, route tables, security groups, and more. The complexity can be overwhelming for configuration and troubleshooting.

Monitoring & Logging

Setting up monitoring, logging, and alerting for performance optimization across AWS services is challenging. Troubleshooting requires continuous attention.

Service Limits

AWS can impose limits on resources like EC2 instances, S3 storage, and API calls, which can sometimes lead to operational constraints.

API & SDK Compatibility

Managing version updates and ensuring compatibility for AWS APIs and SDKs used in custom applications can lead to compatibility issues and downtime.

Disaster Recovery

Designing and implementing reliable backup and disaster recovery strategies across AWS services requires careful planning.

Instance Management

Keeping track of EC2 instances, instance types, AMIs, and their configurations becomes cumbersome at scale.

Resource Cleanup

Managing unused resources, orphaned volumes, and optimizing resource utilization to avoid unnecessary costs requires regular cleanup.

Resource Tagging

Maintaining consistent and meaningful resource tagging practices for cost allocation and management can be tedious.

Data Transfer Costs

AWS data transfer costs can add up quickly, especially for data-intensive applications or cross-region data transfers.


Manual tasks and lack of automation are inefficient and increase the risk of human errors in AWS administration.

Database Management

AWS database service administration — like RDS or DynamoDB — requires expertise in database management and performance tuning.


We seem to mention compliance often… Why? Addressing compliance requirements, conducting audits, and ensuring data governance within AWS environments is time-consuming and stressful.

AWS Administrators, Don’t Go Crazy…

Effectively managing these challenges demands a blend of technical prowess, ongoing education, automation, implementing best practices, and utilizing AWS tools like AWS Support and the AWS Well-Architected Framework. This multifaceted approach is crucial for optimizing operations and ensuring the smooth functioning of AWS environments amidst complex and evolving requirements.

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