Let’s imagine you build a great product; it is performing well and attracting more and more users. As the app grows in time, it needs to process more requests per minute.
The problem is if you do not create the necessary infrastructure to accommodate the app performance you will give your end-users a bad experience and potentially lose a significant portion of your audience.
Good Planning Can Avoid A Lot Of Frustration
Many people experience a great deal of frustration when they attempt to scale their WordPress website or e-commerce store. Because the cost and complexity of scaling, it can be a very costly and demanding process.
Many entrepreneurs refer problems like horizontal scaling and microservices. It is not easy to know how to drive in and effectively scale a website or app.
Be it an app or website, slow loading time, network connections timing out or servers breaking down under heavy load our problems that can break your business.
It Is All About The User Experience
Users demand a great experience and speed is a necessary feature in that experience. Let’s start from the beginning and understand the several steps needed for an application to grow in time.
What Is Application Scalability?
Application scalability is the future capacity of an application to grow in time about the user interaction.
The application needs to handle efficiently the user’s requests per minute, and although it might sound simple, this is not a simple tweak. It is a complicated process that will involve both hardware and software.
You can start by adding new CPUs or even increasing memory limits, but what you are doing is just increasing the processing capability of the app, not the app performance.
It would help if you saw what is causing efficiency problems in your app. It would help if you had to know how your app function before trying to scale it.
What Are the Main Problems with App Scaling?
There is a saying that rails introduce scalability issues when your project grows too big.
The main problem with the application is not about the ability to scale; it’s more about the whole system architecture. If your app is evolving rapidly, it can be difficult if the project was built using the Rails way, although there are exceptions.
For example, Twitter switch from Rails to Scala, but Shopify was built with Rails at the backend for about ten years and is constantly evolving, with more than 50,000 requests per minute at an impressive 45ms response time.
Regardless of the way you decide developing your app, planning and developing the application is the proper way to avoid many scalability problems in the future.
Many problems can be related to:
• Wrong Memory Management
• Bad Caching
• Ineffective Database Engine
• Complex Database Schema
• Limited Physical Resources
• Wrong Server Configuration
Bias Against An Architecture?
It may seem that we don’t like Rails, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth,
Rails have a vast number of open source tools that you can instantly integrate into your stack. Another good reason to use Rails is that it also possesses much profiling and analyzing tools that can assist you to identify bottlenecks on your system.
Scaling Options At What Cost?
Scaling Comes at a Cost.
One thing is for certain you don’t want to attempt to scale your web service before you reach real scaling issues.
Let’s look at different scaling options. Suppose your main workload is processed via a traditional data center, you can easily switch for a cloud solution and achieve greater efficiency with less cost. Moreover, if your workload is already in the cloud, you can use several available out-of-the-box options.
The problem is that common scaling problems introduce complexity which can create a whole range of problems. For example, the code can be harder to test, or adding new features will take more time, finding and fixing bugs will be more difficult.
You need to be prepared to accept those stray dogs if your app is already pushing the limits of what you can handle. Try to avoid complexity as much as you can.
Complexity Is Manageble
Let’s create another scenario, imagine you have a tech news website, and you are the lucky one to be selected for an early-look review of an upcoming smartphone launch, and it went viral. Your review is a blog post on your website that includes pictures and video from the model.
Also, you have enabled comments for the post, so that readers can also rate it. If you are hosting on a Linux server with a LAMP stack, you going to find yourself in a sea of problems in the scaling arena.
Let’s analyze it a little further:
• Where have you stored the image in videos?
• How many read/write requests are you receiving per second? Moreover, per minutes?
• Can you determinate the level of security required?
• Are the requests synchronous or asynchronous?
• You should also consider it if the website has a transactional load like for example an e-commerce website.
Handling Traffic Spikes
If you need to handle spikes in traffic, you could, for example, reduce the server load by moving the images and videos to a third-party content delivery network.
A great example of a highly scalable solution is Amazon CloudFront which is highly scalable with great building security that can handle any DDoS attack.
You can reduce read load by adding more read replicas. MySQL provides database replication; Amazon Aurora can have fifteen read replicas that allows you to achieve high efficiency at reducing costs.
To reduce write requests, you can use Amazon Simple Queue Service which is a highly scalable queue system that can handle any work message load.
Moreover, since we are talking about Amazon, we need to mention Amazon Elastic Cache for Memcached or Redis to reduce write requests.
Moreover, finally, if you are still having issues, it’s because it’s time to scale your server, and for greatest cost-effectiveness and unlimited scalability, I suggest opting for horizontal scaling.