Test Drives provide an easy way to provide sand-boxed, time-limited demonstrations of software and solutions that run on AWS. Note that test drives require an AWS account to run in, and you will be charged for any usage within that account. If you are looking for information on how to expose your Test Drives through your own website, please see the guide on the Orbitera portal widget here.

Customers who want to run Test Drives must register for access. Test Drives occur in three stages - Launching, In Progress, and Completed. Test Drives enter the launching stage when a customer selects a Test Drive and presses a launch button. During the launching stage, Orbitera provisions a CloudFormation script. For more on how to create CloudFormation scripts, please see the AWS documentation. Please note that CloudFormation scripts used for Test Drives cannot accept custom user input, except for certain Orbitera-provided inputs (see the guide on using these within your CloudFormation template here).

Creating a Test Drive in Orbitera

To get started, click on the "Test Drives" tab.

Click on "Add" at the bottom of the screen to add a new Test Drive

A new screen will pop up. In this screen you can enter the information specific to the Test Drive you are adding. Enter a title, upload a banner image, and provide a description. All customers will see these when selecting a test drive to launch. Banner images should be 2:1 ratio such as 830x340. They should be at least 415x170.

If you choose to include a video, customers will see this while the test drive is launching. Copy the embed video code from the video you wish to include (e.g. youtube) and paste it in the Embedded Video field.  

Under these fields are three more fields, "Launching Text," "In Progress Text," and "Completed Text." This is where you can configure text that will display to the customer when they run your test drive. Launching text displays as the CF stack is being launched. Your "In Progress" text displays after the script has launched and while the customer can use the service. "Completed" text is displayed when the test drive is finished and the CF stack is running.

You can also add upload PDF Manuals and provide additional Links that customer will see while the Test Drive is launching. 

Under "Links" is a button to upload your CloudFormation/ARM template script. Upload your script and select a region to run in.

If you upload more than one template, during the launch a customer will have a choice to pick up which one to launch. This way you can set up a single Test Drive for different regions.

During the initial upload and later, when you click in the template name you will be also presented with additional options. You can put default values for the template input parameters here.

If you mark a "Public" checkbox here, the customer will be able to change the parameter before the launch.

You can also use a placeholder parameters here to randomize them or bind the specific parameters to the specific Test Drive run, which is described here.

In the "Restrictions" section you can set the restrictions for this Test Drive. Select the time period you want it to run for. This is how long the Test Drive will run each time it's launched. Note that you will be responsible for charges in your account while a Test Drive is running.

"Launch Limit" is how many times a customer can launch a specific Test Drive for each registration. Enter 1 so that each customer can launch the Test Drive at least once.

"Starts in" is how many minutes it will take the Test Drive to fully launch. The indicator on the Test Drive widget will count down from this value.

"Status" denotes whether the Test Drive is live. Setting it to active will cause the Test Drive to be displayed in the menu of available test drives, and ensure customers can launch it.

In the "Shut Down Callback" section you can set the http call that will be made to the defined URL on the Test Drive stop.
You can put the external service address to the "URL" field or use a server launched by the Test Drive itself. 
The Callback will be made right after the customer clicks "Stop" or the Test Drive expires.
"Timeout" is the time in minutes between the Callback and actual deletion of the infrastructure deployed by the Test Drive.

Your Test Drive deploys a server with a web application listening on the http port. You want the Test Drive to make a call to the stop.php web page after it stops.
The server's IP is shown in the Test Drive output as "ApplicationIP:".
The Callback URL can in this case look like this:  http://{OutputParam:ApplicationIP}/stop.php)

In the example above, if the "ApplicationIP" parameter is internal and you don't want to show it to the customer, you can hide it form the output from by using the "Output Parameters" section.

In the "Credentials" section, enter the access key and the secret key for your AWS account. We recommend you create an IAM user with the appropriate access in your account. The user must be able to access and configure CloudFormation and all of the necessary AWS products and keys to launch your service. For more information on creating users using AWS IAM, see the AWS documentation here.

Click on "Save." Congratulations, you've just added a Test Drive!

Previewing Your Test Drive

You should now see your Test Drive in the list of Test Drives. To preview it, select the "Store" button and click on "Test Drive." Login with customer credentials to run it.

A window will now pop up. This is what your users will see when they launch your Test Drive. To test your script simply press the launch button. Note that pressing the launch button will launch the script, which will result in charges in your AWS account for the resources that are launched. When the time period is over, Orbitera will delete the CF stack automatically. 

The environment window will display the output from the CF stack being provisioned. Any output from your CF script will appear here, and will also be emailed to the user once the stack is ready.

Now that you've created a Test Drive, you probably want to give customers access to it. Orbitera provides a widget that can be embedded into any website.  Read here for more on widgets and how to use them.