Using AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM) - Tutorial

Welcome to this tutorial on using the AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM). SAM is an open-source framework provided by AWS that simplifies the development and deployment of serverless applications on AWS. It extends AWS CloudFormation to provide a streamlined experience for building, testing, and deploying serverless resources, such as AWS Lambda functions, Amazon API Gateway APIs, and Amazon DynamoDB tables.

Example of Using AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM)

Let's consider an example where you want to create a serverless application that exposes a RESTful API using AWS Lambda and Amazon API Gateway. You can use SAM to define your application resources in a template and deploy them using the SAM CLI.

AWSTemplateFormatVersion: '2010-09-09' Transform: AWS::Serverless-2016-10-31 yaml Copy code Resources: HelloWorldFunction: Type: AWS::Serverless::Function Properties: CodeUri: hello_world/ Handler: app.lambda_handler Runtime: python3.8 Events: HelloWorldApi: Type: Api Properties: Path: /hello Method: get Outputs: HelloWorldApi: Description: "API Gateway endpoint URL for Hello World function" Value: !Sub "https://${ServerlessRestApi}.execute-api.${AWS::Region}"

In the above example, we define a serverless function, `HelloWorldFunction`, using the `AWS::Serverless::Function` resource type. It specifies the code location, handler function, runtime, and an API event that maps the function to a RESTful endpoint.

Steps for Using AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM)

  1. Install the SAM CLI on your local development machine.
  2. Create a new SAM project using the SAM CLI command `sam init` and choose a template, such as "Hello World" or "API Gateway with Lambda Proxy".
  3. Develop your serverless application code and resources within the project folder.
  4. Define your application resources in the `template.yaml` file using the SAM syntax, specifying the AWS resource types and their properties.
  5. Test your application locally using the SAM CLI command `sam local invoke` or `sam local start-api`.
  6. Package your application using the SAM CLI command `sam package`, which creates a deployment package and uploads it to an Amazon S3 bucket.
  7. Deploy your application using the SAM CLI command `sam deploy`, which creates or updates the CloudFormation stack for your application.

Common Mistakes with AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM)

  • Not installing or updating the SAM CLI to the latest version, which may result in compatibility issues or missing features.
  • Not properly organizing the project structure and separating business logic from infrastructure code.
  • Forgetting to define appropriate IAM roles and permissions for your serverless functions to access AWS services.
  • Not testing the application locally using the SAM CLI before deployment, which can lead to errors or misconfigurations.
  • Overcomplicating the template with unnecessary resources or complex mappings, resulting in longer deployment times and increased complexity.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I use the AWS Management Console to work with SAM?

While the AWS Management Console provides limited support for serverless application development, SAM is primarily designed to be used with the SAM CLI and the command-line interface.

2. Can I use SAM with other AWS services, such as Amazon DynamoDB or Amazon SNS?

Yes, SAM integrates seamlessly with various AWS services, allowing you to define and deploy resources like DynamoDB tables, SNS topics, and more, in addition to Lambda functions and API Gateway APIs.

3. Can I deploy SAM applications to multiple AWS accounts or regions?

Yes, SAM applications can be deployed to multiple AWS accounts and regions by configuring the appropriate AWS profiles or specifying the target accounts and regions in the deployment commands.

4. How can I debug SAM applications?

You can debug SAM applications locally using the SAM CLI's built-in debugging capabilities, which allow you to set breakpoints, inspect variables, and step through your application code.

5. Can I use SAM to deploy existing CloudFormation templates?

Yes, you can use SAM to deploy existing CloudFormation templates by converting them into SAM templates or incorporating them as nested stacks within a SAM application.


AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM) simplifies the development and deployment of serverless applications on AWS. By leveraging the SAM framework, you can streamline the process of building and deploying serverless resources using AWS CloudFormation. SAM provides an intuitive syntax, local testing capabilities, and seamless integration with other AWS services, allowing you to focus on your application's logic while abstracting away infrastructure complexities.