October 21 to 23, 2011

UC Berkeley, California

A culmination of the brightest Drupal minds in the technology hub of the world


Scaling, and supporting 200 major artist sites in the cloud

In late 2010, a major media company began exploring the option of consolidating all of their sites to a single hosted web platform. The internal team had been very successful in site deployment, feature development, innovation, integration and customization of business services. The customer reached out to Acquia to see if the media company’s Drupal platform could be changed to provide them with the best of both worlds.
Despite the success of the existing Drupal platform it faced a number of challenges including:
It was targeted to meet site development needs but fell short in operations, maintenance, and marketing team member needs.
Scalability issues caused problems with meeting business’ service level requirements. This was disruptive to the business internally and externally to artists and their fans.
The costs for the platform were fixed

Acquia provided a number of services to help migrate, stabilize, optimize, support, and manage the sites. We will present on how we extended managed cloud to support 200 sites. We will explain the improvements we added:
DNS database failover
Multi-data center high availability
Per site APC optimizations
Memcache tuning
Separated database services including replication to Solr, Syslog, and no-replication strategies
Caching strategies using the reverse proxy-cache Varnish, and the Akamai CDN
Amazon Web Services to experiment, scale, and stabilize a platform that could handle unpredictable, predictable, and growing web site loads.

We load tested this platform using Soasta for 10,000 concurrent authenticated and anonymous users across 120 sites, including four very large traffic sites with 100% authenticated users. Once their instance of managed cloud was stabilized we migrated over 120 media sites and prepared for an additional 80 sites to be added.
To help provide the enterprise tools needed by the operations teams and marketing teams we added new features to the Acquia Network and Drupal Gardens. The Acquia network provides a web based user experience for dozens of common Drupal system administration tasks including migrating sites between dev, staging, production.

Audio available here:


Schedule info

Dwinelle 160