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Michael McCarthy

Michael is veteran software engineer and cloud computing aficionado. After starting his career as a Java software engineer, he evolved into a consultant, focusing first on enterprise content management and later on AWS. He is currently an AWS Cloud Practitioner and AWS Solutions Architect Associate, although he has held many more certifications in the past.

What is Cloud Enablement?

Cloud Enablement is the process of building a highly effective cloud environment. That still sounds non-specific, so what it really consists of is cloud migration strategy and readiness, cloud migration, cloud governance, and DevOps. You may think this comes out of the box for a cloud environment. It does, sort of, if you know how to put all the pieces together. Cloud Readiness The AWS Cloud Adoption Framework (CAF) is… Read More »What is Cloud Enablement?

A Zoom Meeting

Zoom Cloud Recording Download Script

Recently I was working with a higher education client who needed to reduce their Zoom Cloud storage. There are many ways to deal with this, including Zoom integrations with Kaltura or Panopto. The client wanted to take a different approach and simply transfer the meetings to Google Drive, so we developed a Zoom cloud recording download script. Earlier this year, we developed a Python script to keep Zoom users in… Read More »Zoom Cloud Recording Download Script


Why You Should Work with an AWS Partner

As a cloud consulting company, we have worked with small and large organizations on a variety of projects. Some organizations have a do-it-yourself philosophy. They believe that they have technical resources and can learn skill sets they do not already have. If your organization falls into this category, I am here to tell you why you should work with an AWS partner on your project. Total Cost of Ownership It… Read More »Why You Should Work with an AWS Partner

AWS SSO for S3

Box to AWS S3

Box Eliminates Unlimited Storage for Education In late 2019, Box announced changes to their pricing model for all educational institutions. Box eliminated the unlimited file storage agreement at the current annual spend. (See:, We will look at one solution to this problem using Box to AWS S3. Many universities stored petabytes of data in Box based on their previous contracts for unlimited storage. The contract changes are leaving… Read More »Box to AWS S3


Machine Image Management: A Brief Analysis

Machine image management is an old topic, but I think one worth revisiting. When automating server provisioning, how much do you put into the machine image and how much do you do at instance start time? Background Information First a bit of background. When provisioning servers in the cloud, you start from a machine image. In AWS terminology, this is called an Amazon Machine Image or AMI. Community AMIs are… Read More »Machine Image Management: A Brief Analysis

CRISP-DM Process Diagram

CRISP-DM, one AI/ML Lifecycle: An Introduction

This is meant to be a simple introduction to the CRISP-DM framework, which is just one of many artificial intelligence and machine learning lifecycles. There are numerous sources for deeper understanding. The CRISP-DM framework, the CRoss-Industry Standard Process for Data Mining, was created in 1996. The process consists of six major phases: Business Understanding Data Understanding Data Preparation Modeling Evaluation Deployment The sequence between the phases is not strict. The… Read More »CRISP-DM, one AI/ML Lifecycle: An Introduction

DevOps Automation, Why is it Important?

It may be obvious to some, but automation is a key concept when moving to the cloud from a data center or on-premises model. Imagine if you will that it is 1999. Data centers were the only real option for hosting large scale business applications. Often, system administrators would build and configure each server individually and manually. This was a time consuming and error prone process. The result was often… Read More »DevOps Automation, Why is it Important?

DevOps Lessons Learned from Leading a Global Application Platform Team

For two and a half years I was the technical lead responsible for the operational management of a global platform running a vendor provided software product for a Fortune 100 insurance company. That’s a mouthful. In simpler terms, we did DevOps for a vendor provided enterprise content management system. The team consisted of between 8-10 people, including 3-5 in Northern Ireland. This included a scrum master and product owner, so… Read More »DevOps Lessons Learned from Leading a Global Application Platform Team

What is Immutable Infrastructure?

Immutable infrastructure is the idea that your servers can not and do not change. As opposed to mutable infrastructure, where servers can and do change. Mutable servers are what everyone who has ever had to manage a physical server did. You can’t throw away your hardware and replace it every time you need to make an update. A system administrator would go in and manually or via script update, for… Read More »What is Immutable Infrastructure?

What is the AWS Well-Architected Framework?

Simply, the AWS Well-Architected Framework helps you understand the pros and cons of decisions you make while building systems on AWS. It is a set of best practices for building secure, high-performance, resilient and efficient infrastructure. These best practices are a distillation of years of observation of cloud based projects. There are 5 pillars of the AWS Well-Architected Framework. Operational excellence, security, reliability, performance excellence, and cost optimization. There are… Read More »What is the AWS Well-Architected Framework?