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How-To Architect for High Availability in the Cloud


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Learn how to create a highly available distributed application in the cloud in just 3 simple steps.

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How-To Architect for High Availability in the Cloud

  1. 1. How-To: Architect for High Availability in the Cloud Set Up an HA App in the Cloud in 3 Steps August 20, 2014 © 2014 GoGrid
  2. 2. What is a highly available distributed application?  Definition  High availability (HA) refer to the availability of the application cluster  HA also refers to the ability to failover or scale horizontally as needed  Use Cases  Database applications  File-sharing networks  Social applications  Health monitoring applications  eCommerce websites 2 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid
  3. 3. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps 3 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid  Step 1: Decide What Application Architecture You Need  Distribute the application across multiple servers: This approach lets you balance traffic and scale out the web front end as needed. • In GoGrid, you can do this for free using our Dynamic Load Balancers. Point and click to provision the servers as needed, and then point the load balancer(s) to those servers. The process is simple, so setting up a load-balanced web front end should only take a few minutes.
  4. 4. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps (cont’d)  Deploy the Cassandra cluster: In GoGrid, you can use our 1-Button Deploy™ technology to set up the Cassandra cluster for your database in about 10 minutes. Cassandra is built to be HA so if one server fails, the load is distributed across the cluster and your application isn’t impacted. • Below is a sample Cassandra cluster. A minimal deployment has 3 4 Confidential nodes to ensure HA and the cluster is connected via the private VLAN. It’s a good idea to firewall the database servers and eliminate connectivity to the public VLAN. Your database and web application clusters will look something like this: © 2014 GoGrid
  5. 5. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps (cont’d)  Step 2: Plan for Multi-Cloud (3 Components): 1. Create a multi-cloud backup strategy: Employing a multi-cloud backup strategy simply means not putting all your eggs in one basket. Take the time to create relationships with multiple providers and store your backups on multiple clouds. Even if you don’t distribute your workloads across multiple providers, distributing your backups and archives across providers can ensure you can recover from a catastrophe, if necessary. 5 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid
  6. 6. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps (cont’d) 2. Use standard architectures and deployment tools: Recovering from an incident becomes much harder if you’re working with tools that aren’t consistent across providers or proprietary services. If you are, you can still distribute your backups and recover: One alternative is to set up Cassandra with Hadoop on AWS and also set up Cassandra with Hadoop on GoGrid using the same out-of-the-box application technology. This way, you don’t have to re-invent the wheel for each cloud provider with which you’re engaged. 6 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid
  7. 7. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps (cont’d) 3. Design for failover scenarios across providers: There are a few reasons you may want to direct traffic to alternate locations: to optimize performance, deliver custom content to a specific region, or failover. Geographic Load Balancing lets you direct the traffic for your websites to the servers or data centers closest to visitors based on their geographic location. Adding failover capabilities provides a mechanism for continuous availability in the case of a cluster or data center failure. 7 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid
  8. 8. Set up an HA app in the cloud in just 3 steps (cont’d) 8 Confidential © 2014 GoGrid  Step 3: Design to Scale Out  This is the area where the true value of a cloud provider comes into play. As this figure shows, leveraging cloud infrastructure, you can scale out nodes, servers, databases, load balancers, firewalls, and storage in multiple locations, ensuring your operation is healthy and can recover easily in the event of disaster.
  9. 9. What is a highly available distributed application?  Conclusion  And that’s it. In a few simple steps, you can ensure your architecture is HA. Just keep in mind that you need to build 3 things: 1. A distributed, fault-tolerant application architecture 2. A multi-cloud strategy for disaster recovery and failover 3. A design that enables the ability to scale out across data centers and 9 Confidential providers  Learn More  This “how-to” is based on a blog post by Kole Hicks, GoGrid’s Senior Director of Product Management: © 2014 GoGrid