I recently attended to a spot of cloud admin for a fast moving media delivery client. They already host data on Amazon S3 and after having dedicated VM problems decided to migrate their web front end across to a couple of MS 2008 EC2 instances. With sticky sessions scripted and running happily across two load balanced AMI’s thoughts moved toward an easier method for updating replicated copies of the inetpub.
I’d briefly considered DFS but with it being more of a domain based utility it didn’t get much further. FTP was an obvious consideration but even with just two versions to keep matched and mirrored still opened up margin for error. It needed a system which would simply sync up a chosen folder and set of files from a single location across to several remote instances, something like DropBox, but with more functionality, something like JungleDisk “Workgroup” perhaps?
Initially we weren’t sure if such a simply lateral solution could deliver, but for a mere $4 per user non-contracted monthly sign up it was certainly worth a shot and we were happily surprised to discover it not only worked perfectly and seamlessly, it also ran as a system service meaning there was no need to log on to the AMI’s to instigate the sync update, result. Backed by a choice of either S3 or Rackspace storage was also a plus, offering instant linking to the clients existing AWS account during signup, nice, connected and easy.
Being ITIL certified I obviously appreciate the reasons for change management methodology, however outside of the corporate bubble (my previous life) it’s incredibly refreshing at times like this to enjoy creative I.T flexibility with the latest web tech and to resultantly deliver a dynamically stylish and smooth solution for a client in less time than it would have previously taken just to request a departmental meeting.
Good times, next – Auto-Scaling.