Anyone who uses AWS knows the value of EBS snapshots. Not only are snapshots the backbone for any solid backup strategy but can also assist with instance migrations and replication. While manual snapshots are useful for testing changes or for AMI builds, a backup strategy depends on snapshot automation and retention policies. When I first began working with AWS, automating snapshots was done through the EBS Snapshot Scheduler. For AWS architects and system admins, this tool was invaluable. An AWS provided CloudFormation template provided all required resources for the scheduler to run. The CloudFormation template launched a single stack and prompted the user for a tag name, default snapshot time, whether to enable autosnapshot deletion and, if so, what the retention period should be. Once your config was set, you simply tagged your resources with the custom tag you entered in the stack and your backups were on cruise control (of course any Admin “worth their salt” still performed period checks and snapshot verifications).