Operating System on the Cloud


This lesson is the first of four challenges in a "Build a Web App in the Cloud" project which provides a high interest framework and sufficiently complex challenges for students to learn file management and security. In this lesson, students use a command line interface and web browser to set up a Linux operating system on the Amazon Web Services cloud.

Neither students nor teacher need any previous experience to complete this challenge.


File management and security is at the heart of creating secure and functional computer applications and systems. For students to conceptualize these concepts as well as practice the skills necessary to predictably operate and develop computer systems, students need access to a remote computer system on which they have administrator or root  access. With this access they are able to comprehensively practice and develop the file management skills which are fundamental to all computer systems.

Understanding file management and security is at the core of creating functional computer systems and applications. To better learn these fundamental constructs, the command line is a great tool. Using the command line on a remote web server helps students understand the underlying operations involved in all file management on all operating systems including Windows and Apple iOS.

Modern file systems encountered in professional environments are increasingly virtualized and remote. A remote virtual Ubuntu Linux Operating System hosted on Amazon Web Services is used in this lesson to allow the student to have access to a computer to which they have root access. This allows the student to have a better platform on which to  learn about the administrative aspects of file management and security. This would be impossible on a computer which they have restricted access to, such as the computers available to students at most schools.

This lesson is part of a series of lessons which make up a project. As part of the project, students will set up, launch and customize a publicly available web application. This project provides the high interest  framework and sufficiently complex challenges for students to learn file management and security.

In this lesson, students dive into understanding file management and security by first understanding the basics of modern remote virtualized file systems and how to access them over the network. The students will put their new knowledge into practice by instantiating and logging into a remote virtual operating system.

Lesson Times

Lesson TIme : 50 Minute Class Periods
3 Class Periods
Project Time : 100 Minute Block Period
1 Class Period

Industries / Subjects / Grades

Industries / Pathways
  • Information and Communication Technologies Information and Communication Technologies
    • Software and Systems Development
K-12 Subjects
  • Technology Education
Grade Levels
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • Adult

Standards and Objectives


California's 2013 CTE Standards (3)

Related Instructional Objectives (SWBAT...)

  • Student will be able to provision publicly available operating system on a remote cloud computing resource.
  • Student will be able to configure and use remote command line access to remote server.

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