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Burris Builder Explained


A developer is not finished when the code is complete, a website must be delivered to its users. Acting as the bridge between fruition and reality, it is typically the developer who is held accountable for both launch and continued delivery of a website throughout its life cycle.

A client cares not why a website is down, or why it's slow; it is the developer's issue to fix. Should a client accidentally delete important content, it is the developer's disaster recovery plans which will be called into action. For these reasons, and many more, a developer must have complete control of the website foundation, not just the code which runs it. Buried within the complexity of the elastic cloud, is the very control which web developers need.

Burris Builder simplifies, focuses and standardizes the control of Amazon Web Services for open sources web developers. It was built in response to real-life business demands of those in the trenches of building and maintaining business grade websites. The overview of how this is accomplished, and the principles which drive its creation, are discussed here.


The engineers behind Amazon Web Services have devised brilliant, sometimes revolutionary ways to offer enterprise grade services. These services scale big enough to carry some of the largest businesses on the Internet, yet still deliver cost effective access to independent, experimental ideas. The collection of these services were designed to deliver an entire business, however, not just a website. At times, especially in the beginning, AWS is daunting.

Burris Builder focuses AWS tools on web development. This helps to shrink the landscape which a developer must understand before creating and controlling a viable product. Focused GUI tools then provide access to those services from the right perspective. This perspective happens on predictable, standardized ways to reproduce that product, which allows web developers to support the infrastructure before and after launch.


When a plan becomes focused for specific purposes, there are less decisions to make. For instance, allocating more storage -which requires provisioning into the correct zone, formatting, mounting and configuring- becomes a point and click process. You decide how much you need and what kind of hard drive you like (magnetic or SSD) and click create. When several previously complicated tasks get streamlined into only the important decisions, your ability to deliver increases exponentially.


It doesn't take much of a time difference to alter human behavior. Our food choices and routes taken to our destinations are often altered by mere minutes of difference. For websites, permanent abandonment begins to take place after just 3 seconds of delay (which is why Burris Builder helps you build performance). Saving precious moments can mean the difference between taking action and forgoing action. Even minuscule differences may have a compound effect on behavior, when measured over time.

Burris Builder saves time, not only in creating infrastructure and provisioning important resources, but in building the websites inside those servers. Drupal, WordPress, GitHub repos or blank canvas websites are built in moments, on architecture which is designed to be easily scaled. Saving you time, while promoting best practices for performance, which saves your users time.

For any given task, Burris Builder often performs several steps for you, requiring several minutes when performed manually, and often using several different interfaces, even if you know exactly what to do. Burris Builders GUIs operate efficient scripts, they reduce the number of decisions which need to be made, and they do everything with the right perspective.


Your Ec2 web server acts as the center point -the web server- for your infrastructure. You want domain names to point to your Ec2 server, you want to build a MySQL RDS for your Ec2 server, you want to build a Content Distribution Network for a website, on your Ec2 server. Burris Builder operates on the server you would like to affect. Once your perspective is known, settings become automated, the potential for errors gets reduced and the layout of your architecture becomes more clear.


Standards allow people to collectively push a single movement forward; to build inertia. With a unanimous goal, a community creates documentation, answers and ideas on a predictable foundation. This helps you build your project, and it helps any developer who may follow in your footsteps.

Boilerplate Infrastructure

It is not trivial to setup a LEMP stack, and the stack is not the only thing you need. Which additional products have been vetted and are productive to use, and how you set them up is time consuming. Burris Builder starts you out with a foundation with sensible defaults, built on standardized ways of configuring according to common scenarios by developers in the trenches. You have complete control to make a product yours, but without the tedium involved in getting started.

Life Cycle

A standardized, community-driven product reduces the amount of proprietary decisions being made in your foundation. This means documentation, training or other resources will help assure you that issues can be resolved when people are counting on you for a smooth launch, and it helps keep clients assured your products will continue to be supported even after you are no longer active in the project.

Bi-Directional Customization

It shouldn't matter where you like to make your customizations. If you're hands on, a manual edit should not disrupt your scripts and scripts should not disrupt your manual edits. Achieving complete bi-directional functionality is currently in its alpha status, but it is driving the core element of development for Burris Builder.

Control: Hosting that's Yours

AWS provides infrastructure. It is infrastructure so large and vast that established hosting companies provide cloud hosting on top of Amazon. While using "white label" infrastructure is not new, enterprise grade capacity and tools have never been available at the small scale of an independent developer. This is where Burris Builder comes in. The tools help you provision infrastructure which is yours; a personal hosting company. You create it in minutes, tear it down if you don't need it and build something else if you like. This applies to your websites and even your infrastructure.

This goes beyond "root access" to your server. This is complete freedom to build predictably repeatable machines and build on standards which allow you to quickly retrieve help on new ideas. You shape the software and the hardware which drives it as you please; the complete package.