Approach for Scaling to Millions of Users on Amazon AWS Using Microservices

Authored byJay K.on Feb 28, 2017 in Topic Technology
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Amazon Web Services, or AWS for short, grants the freedom to build a business their way, regardless of the use or industry. Thousands upon thousands of customers have joined AWS to save both time and money. Amazon, being the enormous business that is only beginning to expand, can manage a business owner’s infrastructure without worrying about compromising scalability, dependability, as well as security. There is a reason why business owners trust AWS, their cloud services platform is designed to provide rapid access to flexible IT resources. And, if a business owner is looking to allocate their IT department to access a network of resources to bring an idea to life, AWS is a designer’s heaven, so to speak.

The basics of cloud computing are derived from a simplistic design to access storage ad servers over the Internet. A platform such as AWS maintains the network-connected hardware for the necessary application services while the user oversees and provisions what he or she needs.

Scaling 101

It is no secret that Amazon is at the front and center of platform solutions. The impressive design and versatility of AWS maps out exactly what users need and ensure that they have a product in that space. It’s vital that the user start with SQL (as opposed to NoSQL) when necessary. Furthermore, investing in tasks that create a unique identity for one’s business is an innovative strategy – trial and error can only go so far in terms of financial recouping.

Throughout the beginning phases, the user will want to focus on getting a website up and running. Next, the user will want to run a single instance – in regards to architecture. The instance types will vary based on CPU, storage, memory, and networking capacity. Choosing the correct amount of resources for the applications should always remain on the top of the list. For example, one instance should run the whole web stance such as: database, web apps, and management – the DNS should be utilized via Amazon Route 53.

Vertical Scale Incorporation

Scaling to a larger instance type will allow the user to work with a larger framework – such as m3.2xlarge for example. Choosing a new instance type will allow the user to run the network with more power. Note that there are numerous hardware configurations to choose from – anywhere from 244 gigs of ram and higher. Also, some Amazon services will include a provision IOPS option to enhance the overall performance. Certain services such as DynamoDB can take care of numerous scalable services so the user does not have to worry about it. The downside to utilizing vertical scaling is that the user is essentially placing all his or her eggs in one basket. There is no failover and no redundancy. If any segment of the instance becomes problematic, the entire website will fail. Take a cautious approach and ensure that everything is functioning smoothly. Eventually, once a single instance begins to grow, the user will need to look into something that can handle a larger capacity.

Going Beyond A Million Users

Once your app traffic reaches over 10 million users, you will need to apply Sharding and Federation practices to accommodate the increased demands. This process will involve splitting into multiple databases depending upon functional requirements such as Products DB, User DB and Forum DB, among others — Some functionality might also have requirement for NoSQL databases. Once created, each database can be scaled independently to scale the functionality across the rising user base.

This article was authored by Jay Kumbhani, who is a Senior Director of Engineering at Zymr.

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