The Complete Guide to AWS Perforce Deployment Options

Allison Bokone
Allison Bokone
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Last updated on April 22, 2024

Perforce Helix Core running on AWS is an industry leading version control solution because of its speed, scalability, and distributed architecture. If you’re considering a move to the cloud to experience the benefits of Helix Core on AWS, this guide walks you through configuration options and what to consider to prepare for deployment. We look at what to consider before doing your own deployment and explore some managed and pre-configured options so that you can find the best fit for your needs.

DIY AWS Perforce Deployment and Management

This section walks through the decisions that need to be made for an in-house AWS deployment and discusses what ongoing maintenance is required to keep a self-managed instance running.

Choose a Design Pattern for AWS Perforce

AWS and Perforce support any number of custom configurations, but the Building Perforce Helix Core on AWS guide gives a good overview of four common design patterns:

  1. Building only Perforce Servers (P4D) on AWS
  2. Hybrid pattern on AWS
  3. Building only Perforce Proxy Server (P4P) on AWS
  4. Building only Perforce Replica on AWS

EBS Storage Configuration

Once you’ve decided on your design pattern, you need to configure the Perforce Master Server on AWS. This includes configuring your EBS (elastic block store) storage to match the Perforce repository data structure, which includes versioned files (or archive files), metadata (database), and live journals (access logs, etc.).

EC2 Instance Configuration

As you’re configuring your AWS EC2 instance you’ll need to consider CPU and RAM resources in order to choose the EC2 instance type that will best meet your needs. For more details about how to choose your instance type, see EC2 Instance Configuration section of Perforce’s Best Practices for Deploying Helix Core on AWS. You’ll also need to set up security groups and configure AWS to allow Inbound Port Access.

Deploy the Server

When you’re ready to deploy your server you have several options: 

  • Deploy everything manually yourself
  • Leverage pre-built server images on the AWS Marketplace
  • Start from samples on GitHub and customize them for your deployment. 

If you’re deploying your own server, there are additional considerations like reserved instances, availability zone, VPCs, and more, which are all covered in the Best Practices for Deploying Helix Core on AWS whitepaper. If you want to explore the Amazon Marketplace or GitHub options, the second part of the Helix Core on AWS guide, Centralize your Game Production Assets on AWS With Perforce Helix Core, takes a closer look at these solutions.

Perforce Hosting on Assembla

Deploy Helix Core in the cloud in less than 1 minute.

Assembla’s Fully Managed Perforce on AWS Infrastructure

As you can see, building and maintaining your own AWS instance for Perforce gives you a lot of flexibility but also comes with considerable overhead in terms of configuration, deployment, and monitoring. That’s where Assembla can help.

Our Perforce Cloud and Perforce Enterprise are hosted on AWS infrastructure and we have a team of experts that will plan the migration with you, ensure the transition goes smoothly, and continue to monitor and provide support for your instance once you’re up and running on AWS.

Perforce Cloud

With Perforce Cloud hosted by Assembla on AWS, you don’t have server installation, ongoing management or unpredictable billing to worry about. You won’t need to hire an in-house expert because our support staff is available up to 24x5x365. You still get the customizability and integrations you’re used to with Perforce, plus you get our integrated project management and code review tools to streamline feature tracking. And as the only cloud hosting solution that supports Git, SVN, and Perforce we can mix-and-match to accommodate whatever setup works best for your teams.

Perforce Cloud includes 1TB of storage and support for up to 100 Helix Core users. Assembla provides user permissions controls from within the Assembla platform, making it easier for you to manage custom permissions and control access to your assets. We use secure data transfer over SSL and are SOC2 Type 2 Certified to keep your data safe, secure, and compliant in our US or EU data centers.

Perforce Enterprise

Perforce Enterprise includes everything in Perforce Cloud plus several enterprise-grade additional features. Our Enterprise offering introduces a support SLA up to 24/7 and additional maintenance and monitoring by our expert DevOps engineers. We can accommodate custom geographic deployments and set up replication servers to ensure you have the best worldwide coverage and performance with the fastest connection speeds for your global teams.

At the enterprise level, storage is scalable from 10GB to 100TB and we support an unlimited number of Perforce Helix Core users. Assembla supports the Perforce P4 Command-Line Client (p4admin) to provide advanced ACLs and we support auth-sync via SSO, LDAP, and AD to make enterprise permissions management even easier.

With Perforce Enterprise we can also integrate Helix Plan (Formerly Hansoft) Project Management, Helix DAM, and Helix Swarm so that your team can continue using the suite of Perforce tools they are familiar with, in addition to other industry-leading tools like Slack, Jenkins, and more.

Perforce Enhanced Studio Pack

The Perforce Enhanced Studio Pack is a pre-configured environment with Perforce Helix Core running on AWS, with the optional additions of Helix Swarm and Helix Plan Project Management. It’s a great way for companies to get started quickly, with little investment, on a platform that can scale and grow as needed. However, keep in mind that you still have to pay for the AWS costs and assign staff to handle some of the administrative tasks associated with the infrastructure.

Free Perforce on AWS

For very small teams of up to 5 users you can use Perforce Helix Core for free. You get access to all the Helix Core features but will need to manage your AWS infrastructure and version control settings in-house. It might be simpler for small teams since there are fewer permissions and configurations to manage, but it can also be a lot of overhead for individuals already wearing many hats in a small studio.

Remangu

Remangu is another third-party provider of game studio resources in the cloud. They can deploy and manage your Perforce Helix Core servers in the same environment as GPU workstations, storage, CI/CD system. They also support Managed Perforce in AWS for studios that just want infrastructure support for those products. This is managed through the AWS CLI (command line interface) and you can deploy Perforce into an existing AWS account if you have one.

Assembla’s Perforce Free Trial

To find out more about how your team can benefit from Perforce Helix Core hosted and managed by Assembla on AWS, start a free 14 day trial of Assembla. Our team would love to talk with you about how our solutions can meet your development needs.

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Allison Bokone
Allison Bokone
Allison Bokone is an instructor at Miami University in Ohio for the Computer and Information Technology department, specializing in process and DevOps. Prior to teaching, Allison worked at Microsoft for 18 years, first as a Technical Writer, then as a Program Manager and Director at Xbox. In her last role she was a regular contributor to MicrosoftGameDev.com.
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