What Is AWS Step Functions? - AWS Step Functions

What Is AWS Step Functions?

AWS Step Functions is a web service that enables you to coordinate the components of distributed applications and microservices using visual workflows. You build applications from individual components that each perform a discrete function, or task, allowing you to scale and change applications quickly.

Step Functions provides a reliable way to coordinate components and step through the functions of your application. Step Functions offers a graphical console to visualize the components of your application as a series of steps. It automatically triggers and tracks each step, and retries when there are errors, so your application executes in order and as expected, every time. Step Functions logs the state of each step, so when things go wrong, you can diagnose and debug problems quickly.

Step Functions manages the operations and underlying infrastructure for you to ensure your application is available at any scale.

You can run your tasks in the AWS Cloud, on your servers, or on any system that has access to AWS. Access and use Step Functions by using the Step Functions console, the AWS SDKs, or an HTTP API.

This guide shows you how to develop, test, and troubleshoot your own state machine using these methods.

Overview of Step Functions

The following are key features of AWS Step Functions:

  • Step Functions is based on the concepts of tasks and state machines.

  • You define state machines using the JSON-based Amazon States Language.

  • The Step Functions console displays a graphical view of your state machine's structure. This provides a way to visually check your state machine's logic and monitor executions.

Express Workflows

Compared to Standard Workflows, Express Workflows:

  • Are suitable for high-volume event processing workloads.

  • Enable cost-effective processing for short-duration, high-event-rate workloads.

  • Can be inspected in Amazon CloudWatch Logs, when logging is enabled for an Express Workflow.

For more information, see Standard vs. Express Workflows

Service Integrations

Step Functions integrates with other AWS services. You can call API actions and coordinate executions directly from the Amazon States Language. For more information, see the following topics:

Supported Regions

For a list of the AWS Regions where Step Functions is available, see AWS Regions and Endpoints in the AWS General Reference.

About Amazon Web Services

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a collection of digital infrastructure services that developers can use when developing their applications. The services include computing, storage, database, and application synchronization (messaging and queuing). AWS uses a pay-as-you-go service model: you are charged only for the services that you—or your applications—use. For new AWS users, a free usage tier is available. On this tier, services are free below a certain level of usage. For more information about AWS costs and the Free Tier, see Use the AWS Free Tier. To obtain an AWS account, visit the AWS home page and choose Create a Free Account.