Making clouds go faster, for fun and profit!
by Alex Howells, Director of Network Services on Oct 18, 2012
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Everyone loves it when things are fast, and that statement holds true whether you're visiting http://www.livingsocial.com or whether you're hitting the OpenStack Nova API and requesting, "Please show ...
Everyone loves it when things are fast, and that statement holds true whether you're visiting http://www.livingsocial.com or whether you're hitting the OpenStack Nova API and requesting, "Please show me all the instances which I've got running". Nobody ever writes in asking for support and saying, "All of my API calls are completing far too quickly. Slow it down!".
Optimizing the performance of software is arguably a never ending crusade. At some point in time you'll get things fast enough that you can say, "Any effort invested beyond this point is not adding value for the business" but then along comes new code which adds a zillion awesome features, but also regresses performance back to a level where it needs another tune-up.
In the process of transforming our infrastructure and preparing our new OpenStack IaaS to host all our applications, we've been looking for performance wins across the whole stack. We've got some aggressive targets to meet. We've investigated many hardware options and chosen an optimal solution, we've instrumented some of the OpenStack APIs and benchmarked to produce interesting results, and whilst we're not done yet, we do have a "Half-Time Match Report".
Join me as I walk through our learnings so far and propose follow-on areas for investigation and optimization.
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