The plain Ubuntu image that is often used with AWS is very under-configured. Here are a few things to change.

Timezone

This is annoying... the default timezone is set to UTC.

sudo dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

Swap

There is no swap configured, so lets put it on SSD ephemeral driver. By default the ephemeral drive is mounted to /mnt. The commands below will create a 5 GiG swap drive on the ephemeral drive.

sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/mnt/swapfile bs=1M count=5120 sudo chmod 600 /mnt/swapfile
sudo mkswap /mnt/swapfile
sudo swapon /mnt/swapfile

You might also want to add it to /etc/fstab

/mnt/swapfile swap swap defaults 0 0

Hostname

Change the hostname, by default AWS assings an ugly looking hostname such as: ip-10-233-64-xxx.

sudo pico /etc/hostname

Remove the name add whatever you would like.

sudo pico /etc/hosts

Add this line: 127.0.0.1 name-from-step-1