Ron Huber

Ron Huber is the CEO and co-founder of Achieve Internet. He's an experienced senior executive with over 15 years managing and leading software teams in the online media, Internet, and software development space.

About the Author

With 65% of companies accelerating their digital transformation in 2021, the desire to find an API portal solution that lets businesses monetize their APIs is on the rise.

Whether you're just starting out or have years of experience behind you, choosing between a DIY dev portal or a pre-built API portal is challenging.

If you're curious about the AWS API Portal and wonder what you can do with it? This post will give you a comprehensive overview of the AWS API Portal, including an explanation of what it is and how to use it.

What is AWS API Portal?

The AWS API Portal, or Serverless Developer Portal, is a cloud-based web application nested within Amazon's API Gateway service that makes it easy for developers to create, publish, maintain, and monitor APIs.

This self-service portal lets developers explore and create applications using your Amazon API Gateway managed APIs or non-API Gateway managed APIs (OpenAPIs).

This regularly updated (via AWS Serverless Application Repository) portal features out-of-the-box functionality and a customizable, React-written front-end.

The Serverless Developer Portal provides:

  • A site where consumers can browse and test out your published APIs

  • Documentation on all the available resources

  • API keys for registered users

  • Basic API monitoring capabilities

Why Use Serverless Portal Architecture?

With serverless architecture, you don't have to worry about managing servers and provisioning them—the cloud provider does.

This approach has many benefits, including reduced cost of ownership for IT teams and improved flexibility because it's easy to scale on-demand depending upon the needs within an organization.

Amazon API Gateway, Amazon Cognito User Pools, AWS Lambda, Amazon DynamoDB, and Amazon S3 are all incorporated into the developer portal application, making it a complex, modular system designed for specific purposes.

Each of these modular systems is divided into microservices. Here are the specific microservices offered in the serverless dev portal:

  • Login/Registration: Amazon Cognito and Lambda features handle identity management, while Amazon Cognito User Pool lets users register and log in.

  • AWS Cloud: The front-end React app handles all requests and uses Amazon S3 to store static content before communicating with the back-end via AWS API Gateway.

  • Catalog Update: S3 buckets and Lambda functions are used to update the API catalog when files are added or removed from the S3 storage bucket.

  • API Key Creation: API Key Creation Services manage API key creations and deletions. They store all updates in DynamoDB tables and notify AWS API Gateway about any modifications.

Deployment Options

Now that you understand how the AWS API portal is structured, you should know that no matter how you choose to deploy your portal, it requires some configuration before use—even if you choose their out-of-the-box option.

These deployment options are important as they will dictate how applications will be built with your APIs, how you'll expose your APIs to consumers, and the amount of maintenance you'll need.

There are three ways to deploy the AWS API portal:

AWS Serverless Application Repository (SAR)

This out-of-the-box option is easy to deploy and use. For this option, you need to launch the API Gateway Serverless Developer Portal AWS CloudFormation stack before entering parameters into the Lambda console.

AWS provides detailed documentation on how to deploy using this method.

Some benefits of using AWS SAR include:

  • Simple application management: With pre-built applications, you can deploy your serverless application with just a few clicks. You no longer need to clone and build the source code before uploading it onto AWS.

  • Accelerate workflows: Use the power of serverless applications to your advantage and reduce duplication. Create and publish apps once, then store them for use by teams as well as broader communities who also need these services.

AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM)