Seasonal businesses have periods of the year where they experience extraordinary load – usually due
to extraordinary customer demand. Peak traffic might generate a 2x, 4x or more additional load on the
application, such as an e-commerce store.
Insufficient database capacity can result in poor site performance, downtime, and, worse, lost revenue
and unhappy customers. And unhappy customers might never be back… or share their experience on social media(!)
To avoid financial and customer-relations problems, many online businesses ‘bite the bullet’ and provision
enough servers to handle the anticipated peak load. Provisioning for peak means overprovisioning
for the non-peak periods and paying for that peak capacity all year.
Ideally, you want the capacity you need when you need it.
What Causes Peak Loads?
The holidays and daily deal or flash sales for e-commerce sites
End of quarter spikes in registrations for SaaS sites
New product introductions by brands
Increased deployments of sensors on Internet of Things (IoT) applications
MySQL Doesn’t Scale for Seasonal Demand
MySQL and other traditional relational databases were designed to run on a single server — so for seasonal businesses, the only option was to overprovision for most of the year in order to be ready to handle the peak season, even if that season is short. And once you are using the biggest available server, strategies such as sharding or deploying write master/read slave configurations can be used but they are no more flexible to adding and subtracting capacity than when a single server.
And those “database gymnastics” come with a price – complexity, fragility and and expensive changes to your application. With ClustrixDB, you can add and remove capacity with a few clicks of the mouse.
ClustrixDB Flex allows for Temporary Scale During Peak Times
ClustrixDB is a MySQL-compatible, scale-out, relational database designed to scale “elastically” in the cloud or in a datacenter deployment.
ClustrixDB’s Flex feature provides the ability to Flex up to service peak traffic and Flex down when traffic returns to normal. This allows for significant money savings — you pay ONLY for the capacity you use.
With ClustrixDB, no read slaves are needed. and no complicated sharding techniques need to be implemented.
The steps to Flex up and down are simple:
Use a simple command to Flex up to add nodes to the ClustrixDB cluster.
In minutes, ClustrixDB then automatically rebalances the data to take advantage of the new hardware — resulting in more database capacity to meet peak traffic. The Flex feature is transparent to the corresponding application.
When traffic has returned to normal, the ClustrixDB cluster capacity can be Flexed down using another simple command line instruction to remove nodes from the cluster and thereby reduce costs and free up hardware and resources.
For e-commerce providers the holiday season can make or break your year.
Choxi (formerly NoMoreRack), an Internet Retailer Top 100 merchant, was experiencing downtime issues in 2013. So they switched from MySQL to ClustrixDB – an easy change – and had no problems despite a 600% increase in revenue on Cyber Monday.
Every shopping season since Clustrix Deployment in 2013 they Flexed Up, more than doubling their database engine capacity, and then Flexed Down after the holidays. They love the ease and low cost. Read their story here.
Additional Resources About Flex
To read about the business benefits of Flex, download this white paper about a better way to handle spikes.
For More Information on
How to Flex Up and Down, download this white paper.
Watch this brief video
to see how ClustrixDB