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How Cloud Sites Rises To Super Spikes

The Rackspace Cloud Sites team is no stranger to high traffic events (HTEs), and we are definitely proud every time we have the honor of managing our customers’ sites during an anticipated spike.

While surprise super spikes are a challenge we love to conquer, we advise to contact your Cloud Sites team if you know of an upcoming high traffic event. That way we can take the necessary measures ahead of time to ensure your site stands up to the spike.

Here, I will guide you through how we are preparing one of our Cloud Sites customers for an upcoming high traffic event.

1. Evaluate the potential amount of traffic the site is expected to receive.

  • All Cloud Sites web clusters are capable of handling very high amounts of traffic.  Typically, we coordinate with the customer via conversation or answers to HTE questionnaire to determine if additional resources are necessary.
  • In this case, we determined that it was necessary to point the specific website to a “high capacity cluster.” This is basically a web cluster with more resources allocated to sustain much higher spikes in traffic. The resources within this cluster are not shared with any other websites aside from other HTEs.

2. A courtesy glance over the website to identify any possible bottlenecks while looking for areas to increase efficiency.

  • Our administrator specialists view the website’s elements to find areas that can benefit from optimization.

3. Load test

  • We perform load tests and benchmarks while monitoring our systems to evaluate how many hits the website can receive without slowing down or causing system issues.
  • This further identifies what other potential bottlenecks may have been missed during the website look over.

4. Dedicated website monitoring using MaaS (Monitoring-as a-Service)

  • As part of an HTE we add monitoring that checks the website every 30 seconds from six global locations:  Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Hong Kong (HKG), Northern Virginia (IAD), London (LON), Chicago (ORD) and Sydney (SYD).
  • This provides our admin staff alerts including response times, which allows us to immediately jump on any possible issues.

And there you have it! We will always step up to the plate to ensure your business a successful high traffic event, no matter what the situation, but if you expect a super spike, we advise that you give your Cloud Sites team a heads up as an extra measure of caution.

About the Author

This is a post written and contributed by Tony Barrera.

Tony Barrera attended ITT Technical Institute with a focus in Computer Networking Systems. He is a RedHat certified engineer and has been a dedicated Racker for 10 years. Barrera currently serves as the Manager of Cloud Sites Operations.


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