CloudCAP: A Case Study in Capacity Planning Using the Cloud
Emory University Library teamed with a commercial firm to develop a prototype system for using Amazon’s EC2 to properly size web application server deployment environments. This approach has been successfully applied to both high-transaction commercial environments with hundreds of thousands of users and to lower transaction digital library environments with hundreds of users. Starting with the same EC2-based product, our goal was to assess whether a similar strategy is practical for an academic library as well as for commercial systems. We examined cloud configuration and deployment costs, test preparation and analysis, and overall feasibility of this approach. Typically, for digital libraries, the user levels are significantly lower, the deployment costs are lower, and the return on investment (ROI) is not as immediately obvious. We conclude that the effort is worth the investment only (a) when there are significant repercussions from under-sizing a newly deployed digital library and (b) sufficient engineering staff are on hand to develop and debug the deployment scenarios.
KeywordsVirtual Machine Digital Library Capacity Planning Deployment Cost Unique Visitor
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