Pixa Prints first contacted UK Servers towards the end of last year wanting to prepare their website for the busy Christmas period. Formerly hosted on a large single dedicated server Pixa Prints had experienced issues with their hosting service in the run up to the holiday period in the previous year. One advantage Pixa Prints provides over their competitors is that they offer the despatch of any order within 24 hours, this is achieved through an automated online design tool and scripted ordering process which can often put strain on their hosting infrastructure when dealing with large files.
“In the six weeks leading up to Christmas we traditionally see around a 150% increase in our sales which puts increased demand on our hosting service. Our last server provider had tried to resolve this issue by increasing memory and hardware within our existing server, unfortunately our site was still struggling to cope at busy times and having been recommended by a client of ours we approached UK Servers to see how they could help us.”
The solution proposed to the client was an enterprise load balanced setup using a number of physical dedicated server machines. The proposed solution not only offers improved redundancy but helps reduce page load times by spreading the load between multiple servers. Anthony Parrington, one of UK Servers complex hosting specialists explains the solution: “Pixa Prints wanted to improve their page load times at busy periods without drastically overhauling their website, the solution we provided uses nginx load balancers that operate in failover with apache webservers to serve the pages. In addition to this we also setup an active-active mySQL replication cluster with auto increment offset to power the database backend for the customer. The benefit of such a solution is as the clients business grows we can simply bring online additional web or mySQL servers into the cluster to spread the load the increased visitors place on the clients’ website.”
As with any solution the proposal was put together according to the client’s budget as Greg Bales of UK Servers explains: “The proposed solution to the client effectively required a minimum of six separate machines, two load balancers, two webservers and two database servers. After taking time to understand the client’s budget we came up with a solution that virtualised a number of physical machines enabling both database and load balancers machines to run from the same physical hardware therefore allowing the client to increase the number of web and database servers he was able to run”
UK Servers were able to deliver the system on time and within budget for the customer, aiding in migration from the customers previous host. Richard Sands comments: “The server solution that UK Servers deployed for us has made a huge difference to our business particularly over the recent busy festive period. We were handling considerably more traffic this year and the site never slowed at all, coupled with the peace of mind that our hosting service can now handle multiple server hardware failures we are very happy with UK Servers”.
More information on our load balanced hosting clusters can be found here: https://www.ukservers.com/enterprise-solutions/load-balanced-hosting/ or alternatively please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of our experienced sales team.