AWS Interview Questions with Answers

Are you a AWS Developers seeking a job in one of the top US MNCs? Or, are you a recruiter from a top US MNC looking for an excellent AWS Developers? In either case, you have landed on the right page.

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 Interview questions

Table of Contents

In today’s high-tech world, everything is becoming digital. Most people are connected to the internet somehow, whether it be through computers, tablets, cell phones, or smart devices. As the digital world continues to evolve, we’ve witnessed many new trends in the business world. One is cloud computing, which has taken the business world by storm.

Many businesses use cloud computing in their daily operations for data backup, big data analytics, disaster recovery time objectives, and more. With the cloud computing sector continuing to grow, the need for cloud professionals also continues to rise. One cloud computing platform is Amazon Web Services (AWS), which has quickly risen to be the world’s most popular cloud system, with more than 200 services offered to its users.

AWS is a go-to for many businesses, but finding professionals qualified to manage the AWS platform can be challenging. There’s a lot of competition, and, for the most part, the demand is greater than the supply. However, knowing what to look for and the right questions to ask can help you find and hire the right AWS employees for your team.

AWS Developer Skills

The skills required of an AWS developer can vary from job to job. However, a few are fundamental for all AWS developers to have. These skills include:

  • Fluency in programming languages: When dealing with a technical field, you must have fluency in one or more programming languages. For AWS, the programming language that the developer is fluent in will depend on your needs and the language(s) that your business already uses and has familiarity with. Common languages for AWS developers include C#, PHP, Java, and Python.
  • Understanding cloud infrastructures: Since AWS is a cloud infrastructure, knowing and understanding cloud platforms is necessary. You’ll need to understand storage protocols and other cloud factors, including public, private, and hybrid storage platforms.
  • Knowledge of databases: Databases and web applications go hand-in-hand, so a good AWS developer must have knowledge and experience using databases, including MySQL, NoSQL, and DynamoDB.
  • Understanding security: When dealing with online data, it’s imperative to be familiar with the latest security protocols. AWS developers must be up-to-date on AWS Security Model and IAM to ensure their applications remain bug-free.
  • Ability to deploy: Once an AWS developer has written a web application, they must understand how to deploy the application, both manually and by using CloudFormation.

As for responsibilities, these will also vary between jobs, but the most common ones include:

  • Working with current infrastructures to create, manage, and update web applications
  • Suggest new concepts that will improve the performance of web applications
  • Follow best practices and strategies involved with application deployment
  • Create reusable programs that are cost-effective and scalable
  • Produce different AWS services using API, Lambda, and other applications

Though it varies, some jobs may require an AWS developer to have a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field or hold AWS certificates.

AWS Interview Questions

Interview questions can be broken down into three categories: technical skills, soft skills, and behavioral. Assessing potential candidates in each category is essential to ensure they’re the best candidate for the job.

Examples of Technical Interview Questions Examples

When it comes to technical interview questions, you’ll want to assess how well they know and understand the AWS infrastructure and the critical components behind the cloud service.

Technical questions should center on:

  • Programming languages: Your potential candidate should understand programming languages and how to use them. They should have experience and familiarity with a few languages.
  • Data structures: Data structures are essential for any developer to have familiarity with, as these structures will allow your developer to access and modify data.
  • AWS Infrastructure: AWS developers must have experience with AWS infrastructure, so ensure that your technical questions target this area.
  • AWS key components: AWS technical interviews should also assess a developer’s knowledge of AWS key components, including DevOps, CloudFormation, and Amazon Route 53.

Examples of technical skills interview questions include:

  • What is AWS?
  • What are API calls?
  • What are the different types of cloud services?
  • What AWS products have been built upon the above cloud services?
  • What is Amazon VPC?
  • What is OpenStack?
  • Explain the similarities and differences between AWS and OpenStack.

Soft Skill Interview Questions Examples

Soft skill interview questions test candidates on interpersonal, communication, time management, leadership, problem-solving, and other personal attributes.

Examples of soft skill interview questions include:

  • Can you tell me about a time when you effectively led a team through a challenging situation?
  • How do you handle many different tasks with essential deadlines?
  • Tell me about a time you’ve had to work with someone you didn’t get along with.
  • Explain your process of overcoming challenges in the workplace.
  • Can you tell me about a time when something threw your plans off track and how you managed to handle that situation?

Examples of Behavioral Interview Questions

Behavioral interview questions are meant to tell you about a candidate’s past experiences and how they respond to specific situations, including skills, knowledge, and abilities.

Examples of behavioral interview questions include:

  • How have you handled past conflicts with team members or supervisors?
  • Tell me about a time when you made a good impression on a client.
  • Tell me about a time you had to think on your feet. Explain your process.
  • Explain your favorite method of communication and why.

AWS Interview Questions and Answers with Explanations

Interviewing potential AWS developers can be a difficult task for some. When you go into an interview, you must be prepped with the right questions to ask and know what answers to look for from potential candidates. Additionally, you should cater your interview questions based on your specific needs and what skill level you’re looking for. For example, if you’re looking for a junior AWS developer, the questions you ask should be based on their specific skills and experience. In contrast, the questions can be more advanced if you’re looking for an intermediate or senior AWS developer.  

To find the perfect employee for your team, make sure you’re asking the right and looking for the right native AWS interview questions and answers.

Junior AWS Devops Interview Questions

Junior developers are at the bottom of the totem pole. They’ve likely just completed their education or have a minimum of 0-2 years of experience and are looking to grow in their field. With that said, junior AWS developers shouldn’t be expected to have a resume full of top skills, but they should still have a decent understanding and familiarity with the basics of AWS.

Examples of junior AWS interview questions include:

What are the three fundamental cloud services?

There are three services that the cloud is primarily known for: computing, networking, and storage.

Cloud computing is an on-demand service that delivers IT resources over the internet and is based on a pay-as-you-go pricing system.

Cloud networking is an IT infrastructure that hosts a business’s network resources in a public or private cloud platform. It is maintained in-house or by a service provider and is accessible on demand.

Cloud storage is a system that allows users to store, access, and transfer data and files through a cloud provider over various devices.

Your potential candidate should be familiar with these fundamental services and be able to explain in detail what each one is and what they are used for. They should also be able to give examples of companies who use these services.

What AWS products have been created using essential cloud services?

AWS has been used to create various products through computing, networking, and storage. These products include Amazon EC2 instances, Lambda, Auto-scaling, Elastic Book Storage, and Amazon CloudFront.

Your potential candidate should be able to walk you through each of these products, what they are, what they’re used for, and which cloud service they were based on.

What is a DDoS attack, and how can you reduce the risk of them occurring?

Since security is a huge concern in the digital world, an AWS developer should be able to recognize one of the most common AWS attacks – the DDoS attack. The DDoS attack is a cyber-attack where the attacker makes it impossible for users to access services.

Your potential candidate should be able to explain what it is, how it happens, and what can be done to prevent or reduce the risk associated with these attacks.

Can you explain the different types of instances and their uses?

Instances are virtual environments that are used apart from the standard operating systems. They can be used for several objectives, including hosting web servers, running deployments, storing data and files, and more. There are five types of instances and on-demand instances, including:

  • General purpose
  • Computer-optimized
  • Memory-optimized
  • Storage-optimized
  • Accelerated computing

Your candidate should be able to name each type of instance and explain what they’re used for. They should also be able to demonstrate how to use them.

What is auto-scaling and its benefits?

Auto-scaling is a feature that allows users to establish and run new instances. Auto-scaling also allows users to increase and reduce resource computing capacity automatically, depending on demand. Benefits of using auto-scaling include fault tolerance, cost management, and improved availability.

Your candidate should be able to explain how and when auto-scaling should be used. They should also be able to explain the benefits of using auto-scaling in detail.

What are containers?

Containers are a fundamental component of working with the AWS platform. They help developers bundle up software code and configuration, transforming these assets into objects. Containers work with the server’s operating system to help create a stable and fast deployment that doesn’t rely on the environment.

AWS Intermediate Interview Questions

Intermediate AWS developers will have a more advanced skillset than junior developers but will still have room to grow. Their interview questions should be targeted at a more advanced level.

Examples of intermediate AWS interview questions include:

What are subnets, how do we make them, and what are they used for?

Subnets are used to divide large networks into smaller ones. They’re made by taking bits from local host portions and have several uses. One way subnets are used is to decrease congestion.

Your candidate should be able to explain the above in addition to what the congestion is caused by and how subnets help to defuse congestion.

What are the similarities and differences between spot and on-demand instances?

Spot and on-demand instances are both pricing models. Your candidate should be able to explain the differences between these two models, including:

  • Spot instances allow users to purchase compute capacity and have no upfront commitments, whereas on-demand instances allow users to launch instances based on demand.
  • Users can bid on spot instances as these instances are spares from Amazon. In contrast, on-demand instances are meant to be highly available to support application needs.
  • Amazon can take away spot instances when the bidding price exceeds the spot price. However, on-demand instances are never automatically terminated from Amazon.
  • Users pay for spot instances on an hourly basis, while on-demand instances are paid for on a per-second basis.

What are the differences between Amazon ECS and AWS Lambda?

Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) is a vastly scalable and quick container management service that allows users to run, manage, and stop containers. AWS Lambda is a computing service that will enable users to operate code without an established server. Your candidate should be able to define each of these services as well as explain the differences, including:

  • AWS Lambda supports selective languages, while ECS supports any language
  • AWS Lambda can help users run quick and easy functions, while ECS allows users to run any code regardless of size and difficulty
  • AWS Lambda allows automatic scaling, while ECS requires users to manage servers

What are the differences between a data warehouse and a data lake?

Your candidate should be able to explain what a data warehouse is, what a data lake is, and the differences between the two:

A data warehouse manages data analytics, whereas a data lake stores structured and unstructured data. Both components handle data differently. For example, a data warehouse handles relational data coming from transactional systems and operational databases, while data lakes handle non-relational and relational data from various services. Data warehouses also provide fast query results, but their storage cost is higher, while data lakes also provide fast query results but at a lower storage cost.

There are several other differentiating factors between the two, and an intermediate candidate should be able to explore more of the differences.

Senior AWS Interview Questions

The final level of AWS development is the senior level. These professionals will have years of experience, a solid portfolio to showcase their best work, and varied skill sets. However, it’s still important to test their knowledge of AWS. You can also prepare tests to see how they perform in real-time.

Examples of senior AWS interview questions include:

What are the differences between backup and disaster recovery?

Your candidate should be able to explain the difference between backup and disaster recovery, both vital components of AWS.

Backup recovery refers to the process of locally or remotely copying data. The data can then be accessed and managed whenever and wherever it’s needed. If the file is damaged, it can be accessed and restored from the backup recovery system.

Disaster recovery helps restore access to data, applications, and other critical resources when an outage occurs. It allows these files to be transferred to secondary storage systems and servers until the main ones are recovered.

What is RDS and what types of databases does it contain?

Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) is a distributed relational database that contains several other databases within it. The RDS is meant to create an easier setup, operation, and scale of an application’s use of a relational database. As it’s an important part of the AWS, a senior AWS developer should know all about RDS and the types of databases it contains, including:

  • Amazon Aurora
  • MariaDB
  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • Postgre SQL
  • SQL Server

Explain possible connect issues that you may face when connecting to an instance

A senior AWS developer must be up-to-date on errors and issues that might occur when using instances. Your candidate should be able to explain possible errors, including:

  • Timed out connections
  • Server not recognizing the user key
  • Permission denied due to an unfound host key
  • Unsecure private key files
  • Server refusal of keys
  • No supported authentication method available
  • MindTerm Safari Browser error
  • Mac OS X RDP Client error

Other Factors for Interviewing AWS Devops

When hiring an AWS developer for your team, it's important that you focus on what you're looking to get out of your relationship with your developer. There is a lot that goes into AWS development, and not all developers will be the same or have the same experiences or knowledge. If one area of AWS is more important to you than another, be sure to prioritize and focus on the areas that matter.

Some other common interview questions to ask AWS developers include:

  • What is a classic load balancer, application load balancer, and elastic load balancing, and how are they used?
  • What is a virtual private cloud?
  • Explain the security best practices for Amazon EC2.
  • How do you configure Cloudwatch to recover an EC2 instance?
  • What are the storage classes available in Amazon S3?

Hire AWS Developer with Revelo

It can be challenging to cut through the noise and find the perfect AWS developer to hire to add to your team, but it’s a feat that you don’t have to do alone. Broaden your searches with a global talent pool like Revelo to expand your search to an international market so that you don’t have to be stuck waiting for the perfect local talent to fit into your team.

At Revelo, we match businesses with pre-vetted lists of top-tier tech talent from Latin America. Once you’ve decided on your perfect developer, we’ll assist you throughout the hiring process and after. Schedule a meeting with one of our representatives to answer any questions you may have, and get started in your hiring process today.

Further Resource: Alternative Global Tech Talent Pipeline

Why Choose Revelo?

Quick turnaround for candidate shortlists

A vast talent pool of 
pre-vetted developers

Professional sourcing, vetting, and onboarding support

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Martina L.
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8 years
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