What is VPC in AWS & How it Works?

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May 31, 2022

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There are many reasons that more and more organizations are using cloud computing and when we are using the term cloud computing, one thing comes to our mind- AWS (Amazon Web Services). We are very well aware of the services offered by Amazon that are being used to have a better cloud computing experience. So, in this article, we are going to learn more about one such service called VPC in AWS.

We will cover everything related to it and by the end of this page, you will be able to know more about what is vpc in aws, what are its features, its works, and what are the advantages of using it. We know that AWS is making its way into the market and with the new technologies, there are new things coming as well. Learning about those will give us an edge. So, we will also discuss AWS Training in brief at the end of this article, but first, let us learn about what is vpc in aws?

What is VPC in AWS?

If we talk about both Compute and Network AWS categories, one such service that is fundamental in both of these is Amazon’s Virtual Private Cloud. The word fundamental is being used here because all other amazon services like Amazon EC2 cannot be used until there is an underlying VPC network provided by the company. This is one of the best services offered by Amazon that helps you create your own virtual network that is present inside the amazon cloud and you can later use this network to launch various amazon resources. This is basically your own network of various machines and databases that you can use inside Amazon’s network. You will be able to manage them as it is your own data center without any interference.

This virtual network that you can use inside Amazon’s infrastructure will resemble the traditional network that you can have for yourself and this will have various benefits like the scalable features of the infrastructure of AWS. When you are going to use this service, you can have a completely monitored virtual networking environment that will include selecting your own IP address range, creating subnets, and also the configuration of the route tables that will include the network gateways. This will be very beneficial if you are looking to integrate the business.

What are the features of VPC in AWS?

To understand it in a better way, we will look into some of the great features of aws virtual private cloud and see why it is one of the best services by Amazon.

  1. One of the major features that are being offered by AWS VPS is that it is very flexible with connectivity. You will be able to connect it with the internet, and various data centers that are based on the AWS resource. These are ones that are exposed publicly. Not only this, these can be connected to the ones that are needed to be kept private.
  2. There are various software as services solutions that are being supported by the AWS private link. So, the AWS VPC can get privately connected to that software and provide benefits to the organization.
  3. It has the ability to connect the VPCs within the given organizations and various internal services that are across different accounts. The scalability feature is very important when there are various internal services needed in an organization.
  4. Another amazing feature of using VPC is that it will be able to connect privately to the virtual private network without even using the Internet Gateway.
  5. Using VPC, the organization can have peer VPCs that can come together to share the resources across multiple virtual networks that are owned by the organization or other AWS accounts linked to it.
  6. With the feature of the network access control list, inbound and outbound access to and from the individual subnets can be controlled.
  7. Along with the features mentioned above, the AWS VPC is also loaded with security features. Using this, the organization can provide security to the data that is stored in Amazon S3 can only be accessed from within the Amazon VPC.
  8. With the feature of VPC Peering, you can connect with other AWS VPCs and will be able to access all other resources that are provided on other VPCs.
  9. Also, with the aws virtual private cloud, you will be able to create the internet gateways that will allow the subnet to be publicly accessible. These NAT gateways can be used to allow the private subnet to access the internet in the organization. Furthermore, you will be able to create elastic IPs which can be used to attach to NAT Gateways or other given instances.

How does a VPC work in an organization?

When the company is using the VPC in their work environment, they are needed to create an isolated virtual network environment in the AWS cloud that is dedicated to the AWS account for the given organization. If there are other AWS resources or services, they will operate inside of that VPC network that is needed to provide cloud services. If we talk in normal terms, then the VPC network looks just like running the physical data center in the organization. One thing to be noted here is that a vpc will look familiar to the TCP/IP network that can be very easily expanded as well as scaled as per the needs. The only difference here would be the absence of the components of DC that are traditionally used like- routers, switches and VLANs, and much more. They are not part of the VPC network as they are abstracted and re-engineered into the given cloud software that comes with Amazon’s services. When the company is using the VPC network for their cloud computing needs, they will be able to have a quick virtual network infrastructure that can be used by them to launch the AWS instances at any time. Each VPC defines what your AWS resources need, including:

  • IP addresses
  • Subnets
  • Routing
  • Security
  • Networking functionality
  • Elements of AWS Virtual Private Cloud

There are various elements that are part of AWS VPC networking and some of them are explained below now that we have explained what is vpc in aws:

Route Table

Route tables are the set of rules that are known as routes. They are used to determine where the network traffic is directed. The subnets that are present in the network are linked to the routing table and there could be only one subnet that can be linked to one route table. But the route table can have connections with various subnets. These route tables will determine the specific destination that is IP addresses and target where the traffic is needed to be sent.


The range of IP addresses that is present in your VPC is known as a Subnet. These selected subnets can be used to launch the AWS resources. They are the portion of the network that has a common address component. There are two types of subnets. One is the private subnet which are the resources that are not exposed to the outside world and then there are the public subnets that are exposed to the internet with the help of Internet Gateway. There could be multiple availability zones in the aws virtual private cloud but the subnet will always be mapped to the single availability zone in the network.

VPC Peering

Using the VPC peering element in your network, you will be able to make a connection between the VPCs and other VPCs, you just need to make sure that they are in the same region though they can have a different AWS account. This VPC peering connection allows you to route traffic between the two given VPCs using the IPv4 and IPv6 private addresses.  It becomes very easy for the company to facilitate data using the VPC peering element in their services.

NAT Gateway

Short for Network Address Translation Gateway, it is used when there is higher bandwidth available and there is very less administrative effort is needed. They are launched in the public subnet because the internet connectivity is prominent in this. Along with this, it also requires the IP address that can be selected at the time of the launch. The protocols that are supported by NAT Gateway include TCP, UDP, and ICMP protocols. They are always going to be present inside the public subnet of the given availability zone.

Security Groups

Security is the major factor when we are talking about the AWS services and there are various elements present that help in making sure that the data is secured. The security groups are the set of firewall rules that helps in controlling the traffic for your given instances. In this, the organization can not create a rule which can be denied. In this, there should be a single security group that can be associated with multiple instances.

Network ACL

This stands for Network Access Control Lists. This is one option later for the VPC connection in your organization. This is used as a firewall that helps in controlling the traffic flow to and from one or more subnets. They can have a very similar set of rules as security groups. The rules here are evaluated in the order given. In the diagram, you will be able to find the NACL somewhere in between the route tables and subnets.

Virtual Private Gateway and Customer Gateway

It is known as the VPN concentrator which is on the Amazon side of the VPN connection given. This is the private gateway that is used to create the gateway that can be attached to the VPC and then it can be used to create the VPN connection. And when we talk about the customer gateway, it is an anchor that is on your side of the connection. In the given Amazon VPC VPN connection, the data center is linked to the aws virtual private cloud. And a customer gateway can be a physical or software appliance used in that connection on your side.

There are various other elements that are part of this connection like Elastic IP, Network Interface, and VPC endpoints that make this whole connection scalable, reliable, and secure.

What are the benefits of Amazon VPC?

If we look at the benefits that are being offered by VPC to the organization, there are quite a few. Some of them are explained below:

  • One of the major benefits that come with this is that it is very easy to set up. With the help of Amazon Management Console, one can easily complete this task. The applications and their various elements can be created very easily.
  • Another great advantage of using aws virtual private cloud in your organization is that they can enhance security in the given Amazon Services. The inbound and outbound filtering is very helpful in doing so.
  • The Amazon VPC helps in providing scalability and reliability to the system. It helps in saving the costs as there are no upfront costs. Using this, the resources can be scaled up and down very quickly and this can be done with ease. Right sizes of resources can be used using this benefit.

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What are the best practices to have seamless VPC implementation?

There are multiple layers of security that are needed when you are running a machine. And with aws virtual private cloud you get so many features. So below are some of the best practices that will help you in having a better experience with VPC integration.

  1. Using the private subnets to make sure that the resources are not available on the internet. It will help in increasing the flexibility to launch a service in the given subnets.
  2. To make sure that you are accessing secure internet access, you should use the NAT device as they reside inside your private subnets and provide security.
  3. When you are using the NAT devices, you should always prefect the NAT gateways as they are good at managing the services and there will be less need for the administration. They provide security as well.
  4. If you wish to transfer information between the amazon VPC and other regions, you can easily use the site-to-site VPN. Another way that can be used to transfer information securely is by using the File Transfer Protocol. This is very safe and secure.
  5. While using the VPC in your services, you should make sure that you are familiarized with the Amazon VPC limits as defined.
  6. You should make sure that you are spanning the Amazon VPC across multiple subnets that are available at multiple zones within the given region. This helps in increasing the availability of your VPC.
  7. There are various stages in the project and you should make sure that you are creating separate VPC for those stages like development, staging, testing, and deployment.

Wish to know more about AWS

There are endless services that are being provided by Amazon and VPC is one of such services. In this article, we had a brief discussion about what is vpc in aws, how VPC works, and what are its elements and practices to follow. Furthermore, we saw how this system can benefit the team and helps in scaling and providing reliability in the AWS services. If you wish to learn more about the same then you can go for our AWS Devops Certification where you can learn from working professionals and experts having decades of experience, with case-studies, projects to gain hands-on experience and finally land your dream job. 

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