When comparing Amazon CloudSearch vs Elastic Cloud, the Slant community recommends Elastic Cloud for most people. In the question“What are the best hosted Search Engine as a Service providers?” Elastic Cloud is ranked 1st while Amazon CloudSearch is ranked 3rd.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Easy to Integrate and Manage
The primary differentiator of CloudSearch is how simple it makes the lives of the developers using it. Not only does it automatically scale, developers can change search parameters, fine tune search relevance, and apply new settings at any time without having to upload the data again and can do so from a simple dashboard.
CloudSearch also automatically takes care of:
- Hardware provisioning
- Data partitioning,
- Software patches.
CloudSearch dynamically scales as the amount of searchable data increases or as the query rate changes. The search system utilizes well-understood and automated sharding and replication to scale.
CloudSearch will automatically add search instances and index partitions as required as well as add and remove replicas to respond to changes in search request traffic.
Pro Search features
CloudSearch lets you add the the following features:
- Faceted search
- Free text search
- Boolean search expressions
- Customized relevance ranking
- Field-based sorting and searching
- Text processing options such as stopwords, synonyms, and stemming.
Pro Results Ranking
CloudSearch does out-of-the-box ranking of search results with simple controls to let developers tweak the ranking. You can add stopwords, perform stemming, and add synonyms.
Pro All Elasticsearch features are supported
Pro New versions are available same day as released
Rather than pricing by number of documents or API calls, they price by instance size. So if you have a lot of documents (>100k) that are very small (50MB), or a large number of shards which are small, you won't be arbitrarily forced into a higher pricing tier. Same deal with number of requests - if you need more memory on your instance, then upgrade. If you have a lot of very fast requests, you can stay on a lower tier.
Pro Extremely stable
This is the official version of hosted ElasticSearch and it's backed by the ElasticSearch developers. This makes it probably the best in terms of stability as far as services that use ElasticSearch as a backend go.
Pro Comes with Shield (security), Watcher (alerting) and Marvel (monitoring)
Pro Allow uploading custom plugins
Pro Includes S3 bucket for snapshot and restore (Automatic Backup every 30 minutes)
Pro Free trial available
There's a 14 days-long trial available without any credit card required.
Pro Dedicated clusters with reserved memory and storage
Clusters aren't shared, customers get their own dedicated cluster. Memory and storage is reserved - there's no upper limit in terms of indexes or documents to be stored - and Linux containers are used (LXC) for and process and resource isolation, which means you get the memory you are paying for without having to compete for it with other customers.
Pro Great support
Supported by the Elasticsearch developers themselves, although they won't respond for days.
Pro Easy to work with
Elasticsearch gained its popularity amongst developers by being enjoyable to use. A simple feature comparison against it's competition doesn't convey the significant advantages of just how easy it is to work with. This is due to multiple design choices such as the use of JSON for the API and queries.
Pro Allows multiple types of documents per index
Another useful and unique feature to Elasticsearch is the ability to have multiple types of documents in a single index. You can then facet, query or filter against all document types or a single type.
Pro Supports cjk plugins
Pro Includes x-pack
Xpack is plug-in for elastic search and Kibana. It provides features for securing and monitoring your elastic search instance.
Con Propriety Tech
While ElasticSearch and Solr both have active open-source communities propelling the technology forward, CloudSearch is closed. This has multiple disadvantages such as:
- Constrained by what Amazon allows you to modify/customize.
- No transparency behind new feature development.
- Potentially slower development of new features.
- No way to modify/extend the search algorithms.
- No existing language specific API to call the Cloudsearch and process the response into objects.
Con No 'More like this'
CloudSearch doesn't support the 'More like this' or 'Find similar' features.
Con No AutoComplete/Suggest
Does not have the functionality to either autocomplete the users search query or suggest an alternative query ("Did you mean?").
Con No Geolocation search
No way to sort and filter by distance.
Con Support not satisfactory
Although this is provided by the creators of elastic search, the support is not as effective. It seems they only want you to buy the Gold / Platinum package for support.
Even though you clearly give proof to the support personnel that there is something wrong with the provisioning of the cluster do not be surprised if you get a mail back saying "Everything looks fine...blah blah ...consider taking gold/platinum support...blah blah."
Typically 0.5-3x the cost of other providers.