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Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch

Amazon provides a range of enterprise cloud solutions for transparency, security, and interoperability. The most critical part of AWS services is searching, which enables the users to find desirable information on the internet. Amazon cloud provides two advanced search tools Amazon Elasticsearch and Amazon Cloudsearch that enable the enterprises to strengthen their search engines.

Amazon Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch both are popular AWS-based tools that use proven technologies. These tools allow users to create fast, scalable, and easily usable search solutions for their applications. These can be categorized as "Search as a Service" tools. However, Elasticsearch is a popular open-source tool that offers flexible APIs for customization when it comes to comparison. On the other hand, Cloudsearch is fully managed.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch

Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch are quite similar, but they also have some differences which make them different from each other. They have a few variations. As both tools offer some different functionalities and capabilities which maintain the difference between them. First, we will discuss briefly about Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch separately and then their differences based on some parameters.

An overview of Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch -

What is an Elasticsearch

  • Elasticsearch is an open-source database and search engine tool. It is capable to store data and search it in near real-time.
  • Basically, it is a NoSQL database to store the unstructured data in the document format.
  • It is a distributed search engine that offers a set of APIs, including RESTful API.
  • As Elasticsearch is a popular open-source tool, it offers flexible APIs for customization. It not only developed for search but also for big data analytics.
  • Amazon Elasticsearch is a cloud-based solution provided by AWS. It is an independent search service developed and maintained by co.
  • There are various search engines which are good for search and analytics. Elasticsearch offers search and analysis features to its users at a cost-effective price.
  • It offers powerful APIs and a great search engine. It is a component of ELK Stack.

What is Cloudsearch

  • Amazon Cloudsearch is a cloud-based solution, which is fully managed by AWS. It is now based on Apache Solr but not exactly Apache Solr.
  • Cloudsearch is a powerful and appealing service provided by Amazon.
  • It allows users to search for a large collection of data like web pages, product information, document files, etc.
  • Cloudsearch set up, manages and scales a search solution for your website.
  • It can be easily configured and makes the data searchable using the AWS Management Console.
  • A user can create a search domain, upload data in it to make it searchable in Cloudsearch by just following few steps in AWS Management Console.
  • Auto-Scaling is a powerful feature of Cloudsearch, which is helpful for automatic scaling for Data &amp.
  • Cloudsearch allows its users to control the scaling of your application.

Difference between Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch

Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch technologies facilitate the users to search a large amount of data. Based on some parameters, we will discuss their differences in detail. A list of differences is given below:

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Upgrade

Users can easily upgrade the Elasticsearch from an older version to the new version. Unlike Cloudsearch, upgrades are manual in Elasticsearch. The process of upgrading the Elasticsearch is as easy as replacing the lib folder of Elasticsearch older version with newer version. So, the users have to replace the 'lib' folder with new one to upgrade the application.

Amazon directly provides all major updates to AWS Cloudsearch and does not require manual processing in it. Therefore, the users don't need to be worried about the upgrade of Cloudsearch. However, this may be a drawback due to delays in upgrades of new release but delay comes with stability.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Data and Index backup

In Elasticsearch, you can take a backup of your data using the snapshot and Restore module and restore it back. Usually, it is necessary to define the shared mount path to take the backup of data. In cloud, users can choose Amazon S3, Azure, or HDFC storage instead.

Now, if we talk about Amazon Cloudsearch for data and index backup, it takes care of entire backup process itself. Cloudsearch automatically takes backup of the data. Unlike Elasticsearch, users do not need to run the restore activity manually from the backed-up indexes.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Security and Privacy

Security and privacy is an essential requirement in any tool whenever it comes to data for every user. So, any unauthenticated user could not access someone's data.

Amazon Elasticsearch offers a licensed plugin called Shield. It handles the authorization, user authentication and permission allocation. This enables the developers to take care of security by performing such functions like encryption, IP filtering, auditing, and permission access control. Shield must be purchased to use for authentication as it is a licensed product.

On the other hand, let's see what Amazon Cloudsearch provides to its users for security and privacy. Amazon Cloudsearch offers an IAM-based access control mechanism. This mechanism controls the access of users to use its features and resources or we can say that it grants the users access. IAM stands for Identity and Access Management. It assigns different roles to users at the permission level.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - License Requirement and Cost

AWS Elasticsearch is an open-source search solution so that it is freely usable. There is no up-front licensing cost of Elasticsearch. Therefore, users do not need to pay any additional costs for licensing. However, a team of experts is required to handle its complex features.

On the other side, Cloudsearch is a paid search solution, which is not free to use. It charges on an hourly basis, which depends on the size of user searches. This means it depends on the search instance size. Cloudsearch imposes the charges in dollars, which could be like -

Search Instant Type Pricing
search.m1.small $0.059 per hour
search.m3.medium $0.094 per hour
search.m3.large $0.188 per hour
search.m3.xlarge $0.376 per hour
search.m3.2xlarge $0.752 per hour

Unlike Elasticsearch, Cloudsearch does not require a team of experts to handle it. It offers a simple interface which simply manage the operations.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Search and Indexing

Elasticsearch provides search APIs which enable searching on both index and type. In AWS Elasticsearch, Filtering and Faceting are also included by search API to search data. Now, if we talk about indexing, Elasticsearch has various built-in libraries. These libraries are used by tokenizers, analyzers, and filters to perform indexing.

Cloudsearch is a technology that offers a simple and quick approach for indexing through an easy configuration service. Users can upload their documents by creating a specific search domain. That search domain consists of sub-services that enables the users to upload their documents.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Cluster Management

In Elasticsearch, whenever a user needs to add or delete a node within a cluster, it is done manually. This means the user has to manually add or delete the nodes in a cluster. In case the cluster instances are vertically scaled, the users have to run the setup process from scratch, and the data must be backed up as well as restored to the new cluster. Thus, the user needs to be more careful while processing. In horizontal scaling, cluster rebalancing and resharding are mandatory.

Amazon Cloudsearch provides built-in scaling and upgrade tools. A server automatically upgrades to next larger instance type whenever it reaches its threshold. An index is partitioned into several instances when capacity goes beyond the largest available instance types.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Data Import/Export

Data processing is an essential features of AWS-based search services. The existing data should be imported into the search engine when it needs to be searched. Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch both provide data handling facility for diverse application.

A dedicated plugin "river" is offered by Amazon Elasticsearch to push the data into a cluster. It helps to handle the data across devices effectively. In AWS Elasticsearch, there are various river plugins such as elasticsearch-river-jdbc, elasticsearch-river-mongodb, elasticsearch-river-couchdb, and many more for carrying out different functions.

While in Amazon Elasticsearch, data or documents convert to XML or JSON formats. After that, converted documents are pushed in batches instead of clusters for indexing. For example - Data pushed to S3 to achieve indexing.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Integration with

It is essential to know that Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch can integrate with which tools. We have already discussed Elasticsearch integration with other tools in previous chapters. Let's see one more time.

Elasticsearch tool integrates with Logstash and Kibana to a complete ELK stack. Apart from that, it can also integrate with various other tools, such as - Datadog, Couchbase, Amazon Elasticsearch Services, and Contentful, etc. On the other hand, Amazon Cloudsearch can integrate with the BindPlane tool.

Elasticsearch vs Cloudsearch - Companies use

Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch both are excellent AWS-based tools and used for quick to search the data. These are demanding technologies and choice of several companies. There are many companies that use Elasticsearch for storing and searching the data. These companies are Netflix, Uber Technologies, Udemy, Instacart, Slack, Walmart, Adobe and several other popular customers of Elasticsearch.

Now, if we talk about Amazon Cloudsearch, it is also used by a number of companies. Amazon itself uses Cloudsearch. Along with that, Studyplus, Zola, WqD, Bizongo, Samsunir and many other customers of Cloudsearch.


Elasticsearch and Cloudsearch both are demanding technologies which are choice of various organizations. Sometimes, it is not easy to choose one of them. So, the users choose according to their needs and requirements. Based on the above different, you can select one of the technologies.

Elasticsearch is becoming a popular technology day-by-day because of its flexibility and active developer community. It is not only used for search but also for data analytics. On the other hand, Amazon Cloudsearch is also a choice of several organizations when it comes to operational efficiency. AWS provides Elasticsearch as a Service.

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