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From Azure Search to
SearchStax
Portland SUG #10
August 2021
Making the case:
Azure Search vs Solr
2
Hosting options
Azure hosted and self managed
Azure hosted and partner managed
Azure hosted and Sitecore managed (partner managed)
Deployment models
PaaS
AKS
Azure Search vs Solr
Solr blows away Azure’s limits
Solr has better performance – > it’s 4x faster when indexing
Solr is available in more regions than Azure
Solr is significantly less expensive for larger deployments
As of Sitecore XP 10.0.0, Azure Search is deprecated and will be completely removed in the next release (v 10.1)
3
What is SearchStax
4
Managed Solr
Fully Managed Search Service
• Search infrastructure automation
• Alerts and monitoring
• Backups and Disaster Recovery solutions
• Public and private cloud environments on
AWS, Azure and Google
SearchStax’s Managed Solr & Site Search
5
Site Search
Relevant & Personalized Search
• Gain search insights & analytics
• Marketing managed search with advanced
search capabilities & personalization
• Search experience management
• Search results optimization (A/B Tests)
SearchStax for Sitecore
• High availability - Multi-node clusters with fault tolerance architecture. Cross-region backup and disaster
recovery options for mission-critical apps.
• Global clusters - Support for 60+ regions across AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform
• Uptime and support SLA for mission-critical applications - Uptime and response time SLA guarantees 24x7
coverage; less than 30 minutes response time
• Multi-cloud - Run your search infrastructure on any cloud--ours or yours--including AWS, Azure and Google
• Designed for developer productivity - Build applications faster without losing control using automation,
APIs, and Webhooks
• Secure - Built-in security controls, features, and processes to meet compliance standards, including SOC 2
Type II certification
6
Why SearchStax?
7
Problems with a DIY Solr implementation and maintenance
Solr is not a core
expertise
There is no doubt that your
developers have the skills to deploy,
manage and scale Solr — but is that
the best use of their valuable time?
Focus your team on value-added
tasks that improve the customer
experience.
High availability Solr is
complicated
Setting up and managing high
availability Solr is time consuming and
has many moving parts. Your team not
only needs to ramp up on Solr, Java
and Zookeeper — but also do it in a
high availability fashion.
Solr operations are a
distraction
Free your team from incident
management, planned and
unplanned maintenances, post-
mortem, security updates, patches
and continuous infrastructure
improvements.
8
Features of SearchStax for Sitecore
• Checks the connectivity between Sitecore and Solr running on SearchStax
• Uploads config files to the Solr deployment
• Determines if the Solr is running on a single non-production node, or if it’s a multi-node production-grade
high-availability cluster.
• Creates appropriate collections in Solr
• Configures collections for redundancy and high-availability if it detects Solr is running as a cluster
• Creates aliases for XDB collections
• Updates the config files in Sitecore to make sure it is able to communicate with the Solr
9
Sitecore Managed Cloud architecture
10
Compliance
✓ SOC2 Type II Certified
✓ Privacy Shield Framework
✓ GDPR Compliance
✓ Data Sovereignty
✓ CSA CAIQ
✓ PCI DSS
Security
✓ Encryption in Transit
✓ Encryption at Rest
✓ Basic Authentication
✓ IP Filtering
✓ SearchStax User Roles
✓ Audit Logs
✓ Zookeeper Security
✓ SearchStax Dashboard Security
Built in compliance
How it works
13
14
15
Activating SearchStax
16
17
18
19
Managed Solr
20
SearchStax Managed Solr features
Multi-cloud Scalability Private environments
Flexible
architectures
Disaster recovery
21
Webhooks
Integrations
Management APIs
Multi-regional cloud options for Managed Solr
22
MULTI-REGION CLUSTER
Production Deployment
High Availabilityand Performance
with cross-regionredundancy
DEVELOPMENTNODE
PRODUCTION CLUSTER
Solr Architectures for any scale from Development to Production
Auto-ScaleTriggerMechanism
TRIGGER RESULTS
Scheduled Action
Scheduled Action helps define
rules to perform scaling actions
at certain times in future
ChangeCapacity+2 nodesat 3:00pm PST
on December21, 2020
ChangeCapacity-1nodeat 3:00pm PST
on December30, 2020
Scaling Rules
Scaling Rules help define rules to
performscaling actions
depending upon alerts trigged via
Managed Solr
ChangeCapacity +1 node if
Alert(CPU_Utilization > 65% and < 75%,
5mins) UpperBound: 10
ChangeCapacity +3 nodes if
Alert(CPU_Utilization > 85%,
5mins) UpperBound: 10
ChangeCapacity -1node if
Alert(CPU_Utilization < 30%,
5mins) LowerBound: 2
ChangeCapacity +2 node if
Alert(RequestsPerSecond> 100,
5mins) UpperBound: 10
Scaling Service Request
Service Requests allow
customers to submit ad-hoc
scaling requests (unplanned or
not well defined)
ChangeCapacity +1
node
Save Infrastructure Costs — Pay for what youneed
Scaling automation options to help deal with traffic changes
Copyrights © SearchStax® Inc. 2014-2020.AllRights
Reserved.
Copyrights © SearchStax® Inc. 2014-2020.AllRights
Reserved.
SearchStaxsupports Managed Solr deploymentsin Virtual Private Clouds (VPC) on AWS or Google Cloudand on Virtual Private Networks (VNet)on the MicrosoftAzureCloud
Private environments for security and performance
Disaster recovery options
Hot
• A standby system that replicates
your production or active
environment.
• An interruption in service at the
primary site triggers a rapid
switch to the standby site.
• The standby system runs in a
different cloud-provider region.
Warm
• A single-node version of a “hot”
system
• Limited throughput and
redundancy
• Lower-cost option relative to Hot
Cold
• Uses Cross-Region Replication to
write your backup file to a remote
region
• There is no standby deployment
and no expense for maintaining
one
• If the primary system fails,
SearchStax engineers spin up a
new deployment in the remote
region and restore a pre-
positioned backup.
26
Management APIs for managing Solr deployments remotely
• Authentication
• Users
• Basic Auth
• IP filtering
• Deployment
• DNS Alias
• Backup/Restore
• Tags
• Alerts
• Webhooks
• Zookeeper
27
Integrations for additional monitoring and alerting
• New Relic monitoring
• New Relic APM – application analytics
• New Relic Servers – server metrics
• Pager Duty alerts
28
Alerts & webhooks for advanced customizations
Alerts – create alerts based on a selection of metrics Webhooks – add custom functionality based on alerts
29
Site Search
30
Reliable & trusted implementation partner
Search configuration
Search analytics
Search UX
accelerator
SXA Toolbox support
Sitecore
personalization and
testing support
31
With SearchStax UX Accelerators deliver site search best practices on your site in less than 60 minutes.
✓Search feedback
✓Prominent search bar
✓Auto-suggestions
✓Facets
✓Color coded
categories
✓Promotions
✓Spellcheck
✓Alternative result views
✓Sorting
✓Pagination
Get up and running quickly
Use a dashboard interface to configure search features with facets, synonyms, stopwords, spell checking, auto-suggest and related
searches.
✓Results and Display
✓Hit Highlighting
✓Faceting
✓Stopwords
✓Synonyms
✓Spell Check
✓Auto-Suggest
Manage search without coding
Create or edit differentmodels to quicklytest and compare competing search experiences.Give specific fields the boost they need to rank
higher in results.Use Rules to improve the search experience.Promote content to the top of the results page to create customized experiences.
✓Multiple Relevance Models
✓Search Fields
✓Ranking
✓Rules
✓Promotions
Improve search ranking & relevance with Relevance Models
Relevance models are also used in Sitecore personalization
35
Models allow customizing search fields, search ranking, search rules, and custom promote search results in a given order for a particular
query.
SXA Toolbox support for the search page rendering
36
✓Dashboard
✓Most Popular Searches
✓No Result Searches
✓Searches With No Clicks
✓Most Clicked Content
✓Least Clicked Content
✓Power Search (search
query reporting)
May 30, 2021 — June 30 2021
1.4k 185
TOTAL SEARCHES TOTAL CLICKS CLICK-THROUGHRATE
12.8%
CONVERSIONSFROMSEARCH
AVERAGECLICKPOSITION
5
4
3
AVERAGE
CLICK
POSITION
2
1
CLICK-THROUGHRATE
50
40
30
CLICK-THROUGH
RATE
%
20
10
NORESULTSSEARCHES
10
NO
RESULTS
SEARCHES
%
5
06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03 06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03 06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03
TIME TIME TIME
AVERAGESEARCHLATENCY
5.8MS
▼37.9%
SiteSearch
Straight-forward search analytics
Let’s create
remarkable search
experiences!

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Migrating from Azure Search to SearcStax

  • 1. From Azure Search to SearchStax Portland SUG #10 August 2021
  • 2. Making the case: Azure Search vs Solr 2
  • 3. Hosting options Azure hosted and self managed Azure hosted and partner managed Azure hosted and Sitecore managed (partner managed) Deployment models PaaS AKS Azure Search vs Solr Solr blows away Azure’s limits Solr has better performance – > it’s 4x faster when indexing Solr is available in more regions than Azure Solr is significantly less expensive for larger deployments As of Sitecore XP 10.0.0, Azure Search is deprecated and will be completely removed in the next release (v 10.1) 3
  • 5. Managed Solr Fully Managed Search Service • Search infrastructure automation • Alerts and monitoring • Backups and Disaster Recovery solutions • Public and private cloud environments on AWS, Azure and Google SearchStax’s Managed Solr & Site Search 5 Site Search Relevant & Personalized Search • Gain search insights & analytics • Marketing managed search with advanced search capabilities & personalization • Search experience management • Search results optimization (A/B Tests)
  • 6. SearchStax for Sitecore • High availability - Multi-node clusters with fault tolerance architecture. Cross-region backup and disaster recovery options for mission-critical apps. • Global clusters - Support for 60+ regions across AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform • Uptime and support SLA for mission-critical applications - Uptime and response time SLA guarantees 24x7 coverage; less than 30 minutes response time • Multi-cloud - Run your search infrastructure on any cloud--ours or yours--including AWS, Azure and Google • Designed for developer productivity - Build applications faster without losing control using automation, APIs, and Webhooks • Secure - Built-in security controls, features, and processes to meet compliance standards, including SOC 2 Type II certification 6
  • 8. Problems with a DIY Solr implementation and maintenance Solr is not a core expertise There is no doubt that your developers have the skills to deploy, manage and scale Solr — but is that the best use of their valuable time? Focus your team on value-added tasks that improve the customer experience. High availability Solr is complicated Setting up and managing high availability Solr is time consuming and has many moving parts. Your team not only needs to ramp up on Solr, Java and Zookeeper — but also do it in a high availability fashion. Solr operations are a distraction Free your team from incident management, planned and unplanned maintenances, post- mortem, security updates, patches and continuous infrastructure improvements. 8
  • 9. Features of SearchStax for Sitecore • Checks the connectivity between Sitecore and Solr running on SearchStax • Uploads config files to the Solr deployment • Determines if the Solr is running on a single non-production node, or if it’s a multi-node production-grade high-availability cluster. • Creates appropriate collections in Solr • Configures collections for redundancy and high-availability if it detects Solr is running as a cluster • Creates aliases for XDB collections • Updates the config files in Sitecore to make sure it is able to communicate with the Solr 9
  • 10. Sitecore Managed Cloud architecture 10
  • 11. Compliance ✓ SOC2 Type II Certified ✓ Privacy Shield Framework ✓ GDPR Compliance ✓ Data Sovereignty ✓ CSA CAIQ ✓ PCI DSS Security ✓ Encryption in Transit ✓ Encryption at Rest ✓ Basic Authentication ✓ IP Filtering ✓ SearchStax User Roles ✓ Audit Logs ✓ Zookeeper Security ✓ SearchStax Dashboard Security Built in compliance
  • 13. 14
  • 14. 15
  • 16. 17
  • 17. 18
  • 18. 19
  • 20. SearchStax Managed Solr features Multi-cloud Scalability Private environments Flexible architectures Disaster recovery 21 Webhooks Integrations Management APIs
  • 21. Multi-regional cloud options for Managed Solr 22
  • 22. MULTI-REGION CLUSTER Production Deployment High Availabilityand Performance with cross-regionredundancy DEVELOPMENTNODE PRODUCTION CLUSTER Solr Architectures for any scale from Development to Production
  • 23. Auto-ScaleTriggerMechanism TRIGGER RESULTS Scheduled Action Scheduled Action helps define rules to perform scaling actions at certain times in future ChangeCapacity+2 nodesat 3:00pm PST on December21, 2020 ChangeCapacity-1nodeat 3:00pm PST on December30, 2020 Scaling Rules Scaling Rules help define rules to performscaling actions depending upon alerts trigged via Managed Solr ChangeCapacity +1 node if Alert(CPU_Utilization > 65% and < 75%, 5mins) UpperBound: 10 ChangeCapacity +3 nodes if Alert(CPU_Utilization > 85%, 5mins) UpperBound: 10 ChangeCapacity -1node if Alert(CPU_Utilization < 30%, 5mins) LowerBound: 2 ChangeCapacity +2 node if Alert(RequestsPerSecond> 100, 5mins) UpperBound: 10 Scaling Service Request Service Requests allow customers to submit ad-hoc scaling requests (unplanned or not well defined) ChangeCapacity +1 node Save Infrastructure Costs — Pay for what youneed Scaling automation options to help deal with traffic changes Copyrights © SearchStax® Inc. 2014-2020.AllRights Reserved.
  • 24. Copyrights © SearchStax® Inc. 2014-2020.AllRights Reserved. SearchStaxsupports Managed Solr deploymentsin Virtual Private Clouds (VPC) on AWS or Google Cloudand on Virtual Private Networks (VNet)on the MicrosoftAzureCloud Private environments for security and performance
  • 25. Disaster recovery options Hot • A standby system that replicates your production or active environment. • An interruption in service at the primary site triggers a rapid switch to the standby site. • The standby system runs in a different cloud-provider region. Warm • A single-node version of a “hot” system • Limited throughput and redundancy • Lower-cost option relative to Hot Cold • Uses Cross-Region Replication to write your backup file to a remote region • There is no standby deployment and no expense for maintaining one • If the primary system fails, SearchStax engineers spin up a new deployment in the remote region and restore a pre- positioned backup. 26
  • 26. Management APIs for managing Solr deployments remotely • Authentication • Users • Basic Auth • IP filtering • Deployment • DNS Alias • Backup/Restore • Tags • Alerts • Webhooks • Zookeeper 27
  • 27. Integrations for additional monitoring and alerting • New Relic monitoring • New Relic APM – application analytics • New Relic Servers – server metrics • Pager Duty alerts 28
  • 28. Alerts & webhooks for advanced customizations Alerts – create alerts based on a selection of metrics Webhooks – add custom functionality based on alerts 29
  • 30. Reliable & trusted implementation partner Search configuration Search analytics Search UX accelerator SXA Toolbox support Sitecore personalization and testing support 31
  • 31. With SearchStax UX Accelerators deliver site search best practices on your site in less than 60 minutes. ✓Search feedback ✓Prominent search bar ✓Auto-suggestions ✓Facets ✓Color coded categories ✓Promotions ✓Spellcheck ✓Alternative result views ✓Sorting ✓Pagination Get up and running quickly
  • 32. Use a dashboard interface to configure search features with facets, synonyms, stopwords, spell checking, auto-suggest and related searches. ✓Results and Display ✓Hit Highlighting ✓Faceting ✓Stopwords ✓Synonyms ✓Spell Check ✓Auto-Suggest Manage search without coding
  • 33. Create or edit differentmodels to quicklytest and compare competing search experiences.Give specific fields the boost they need to rank higher in results.Use Rules to improve the search experience.Promote content to the top of the results page to create customized experiences. ✓Multiple Relevance Models ✓Search Fields ✓Ranking ✓Rules ✓Promotions Improve search ranking & relevance with Relevance Models
  • 34. Relevance models are also used in Sitecore personalization 35 Models allow customizing search fields, search ranking, search rules, and custom promote search results in a given order for a particular query.
  • 35. SXA Toolbox support for the search page rendering 36
  • 36. ✓Dashboard ✓Most Popular Searches ✓No Result Searches ✓Searches With No Clicks ✓Most Clicked Content ✓Least Clicked Content ✓Power Search (search query reporting) May 30, 2021 — June 30 2021 1.4k 185 TOTAL SEARCHES TOTAL CLICKS CLICK-THROUGHRATE 12.8% CONVERSIONSFROMSEARCH AVERAGECLICKPOSITION 5 4 3 AVERAGE CLICK POSITION 2 1 CLICK-THROUGHRATE 50 40 30 CLICK-THROUGH RATE % 20 10 NORESULTSSEARCHES 10 NO RESULTS SEARCHES % 5 06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03 06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03 06-05 06-12 06-19 06-26 07-03 TIME TIME TIME AVERAGESEARCHLATENCY 5.8MS ▼37.9% SiteSearch Straight-forward search analytics