I don’t use a Cloud for any of my blogs or email services. I’ve looked at three different cloud providers including Amazon, Rackspace and others. I guessed that they all would work, more or less.
Well, after I’ve spent a week or so installing Linux, NGINX, Varnish/Memcache, PHP, WordPress etc. Then spend time hardening the Linux, NGINX, WordPress etc. And configuring the email server. And the DNS server. And patch/update it every week or two.And after all that, my hosting costs spiralled out of control almost immediately. It was a complete failure from start to finish.
I’ve decided to summarise my Cloud Computing experience by preparing a ConsultoBabble ™ report for your enjoyment. I warn you, it’s not happy reading.
“ConsultoBabble™” exit statement
This report summarises the exit statement from the closure of the Cloud Computing Project for EtherealMind.com. We agree that this project did not meet the high expectations of our customers and that we failed to meet the necessary service levels.
Implementation of EtherealMind.com on the Cloud
Initial implementation was estimated at twenty hours. However, unexpected software implementation challenges resulted in approx two hundred hours investment. We could have improved this time with better Linux skills however the correct skill set was not available at project commencement.
We agree that our convention for naming this process “DevOps” was misleading.
The initial deployment was completed on a cloud server despite the time pressures. However, the Cloud Provider billing systems was specified in the initial design, and ongoing review of charges was specified. The planned monthly cost of the website was exceeded in the first week with no recourse for refund or reparation from the Cloud Provider.
A deep analysis of the system logs from NGINX was initiated. Our process shows that the web sites are being scraped on the RSS feeds from hundreds of separate sources including “market sentiment analysis” companies, chinese scrapers, internal corporate intranets, vendors feeds and much more that could not be identified.
And none of these “hits” resulted in “page views” for success measurement or impressions. As such, they are classed as failure criteria for service delivery benchmarks specified in the initial service outline.
There are no mechanisms to control who can “hit” the websites, or restrict access. Inbound filtering of client traffic for an open website isn’t practical. We accept that each HTTP request was costing money in terms of CPU/Memory consumption, Storage (logs) and CDN/Caching volumes. each resource request consumes compound resources and compound charges are levied by the Cloud Provider.
Customer Impact Statemet : Costs are increasing without any control mechanism or business reward. Further, no control over the demand side of the business opportunity to restrict costs within a set budget.
Cost Containment: After performing an analysis of possible rectification processes to limit the performance of the systems it was clear that these options also required a significant investment to locate, learn and implement software that would deliver cost management.
Recommendation: This project is agreed closed. It’s our recommendation that use of Cloud solutions is impractical unless you have control over the demand. That is, unless you can control the resource consumption by reaching the demand for services, you may be committing your budget to an unlimited amount of funding. Further, there are many unexpected ways for Cloud to incur costs.
We apologise for making hyperbolic promises about the suitability of deploying a medium sized web site to a cloud hosting system. We recognise that this solution would never have meet the requirements if we had understood a how a “Cloud Computer” worked.
We understand that you now have a successful deployment using a managed service provider whom is specialised in providing specific solutions on the dedicated systems.