Case Study

We migrated the largest known Vertica cluster to the cloud

A prominent West Coast online gaming company was outgrowing their aging brick-and-mortar data center and data warehouse.

As is so often the case with enterprise implementations, the need to manage upgrades, add computing resources, and ensure uptime were outside the client’s core competency. Further, the data warehouse quickly outgrew budget constraints.

The client started by working with the enterprise teams at AWS to migrate their more-than-100-node Vertica cluster to the cloud. Other firms had told them it simply couldn’t be done—no cluster that large had ever been built in the cloud. Confronted with this challenge, AWS and the client approached Full 360 for our expertise in determining whether the warehouse could be moved.

Full 360 proved it could be done. We built a complete replica of the client’s data cluster in AWS—migrating nearly a petabyte of data in the process.

However, it wasn’t merely a proof of concept; we demonstrated that such a cluster was reliable in production and that it would meet or exceed strict performance standards.

We built this massive Vertica cluster using our proprietary knowledge including innovative imaging, devops, and service discovery techniques. We demonstrated how to tear down and rebuild the entire infrastructure in an automated, predictable, and repeatable way.

Building the entire 100+ node cluster took only 48 hours, once the data warehouse backup become available in S3. This is incredibly fast for such a massive dataset, and clearly demonstrates the power of running a data warehouse in the cloud.

Benefit: secure and expedient data warehouse migrations at massive scales

Migrating a data warehouse to the cloud offers incredible flexibility: it can be moved geographically, destroyed and rebuilt, replicated, and upgraded. The cloud also removes the need for costly and time-intensive hardware maintenance.

Case Study

We optimized infrastructure and licensing to make costs more predictable

A large news and media company approached Full360 because costs for infrastructure and licensing were projected to increase substantially.

Data growth and integrating new data sources, while essential to the businesses, made planning and maintaining systems a challenge. Further, as data warehousing needs increased, the client was exposed to increased licensing costs.

Full 360 evaluated the current system’s architecture and proposed methods to optimize licensing and infrastructure so that budgeting could be more predictable.

The answer: a data warehouse using Redshift for large amounts of source data, while storing only key tables and aggregates in Vertica.

This approach accommodates ad-hoc analysis on large datasets (Redshift) while still facilitating high performance dashboards and reporting (Vertica). It leverages the strengths of each platform and protects the existing Vertica license investment—so that licensing could be managed carefully to support predicted expansion.

Full360 presented a total cost of ownership model to the client, demonstrating a terabyte of data cycling through the two data warehouse tiers.

Benefit: 71% cost savings through efficient licensing and scalable computing resources

In addition to more efficient licensing, the client benefits from having a cloud-powered system. The cloud offers scalability, so that additional resources can be provisioned immediately, whenever needed. Compared to an on-site system, the difference in flexibility is startling.

This combined approach drove substantial savings; over a 10 year period, we projected that this client could alleviate as much as 71% of licensing and computing infrastructure expenses.

Case Study

Near real-time passenger data to create a personalized flying experience

An airline had built an iPad app to deliver passenger data to customer service agents and flight crew, replacing the typical paper manifest. The attendants could then use the app to provide higher quality, personalized customer service.

However, as the iPad app approached release, the airline discovered that their existing data warehouse was unable to to meet timing and performance requirements. It simply could not combine and deliver data to the mobile devices quickly enough.

The client approached Full 360 to build a faster, more reliable data warehouse. We created a Vertica cluster in the AWS cloud, which integrates multiple sources of data using Talend DI and JRuby, and then supplies a feed of enhanced passenger data that is displayed by the iPad application.

That data reaches iPads on each aircraft in near real-time, delivered through a web service platform built on Sinatra, with Chef, Consul, and Docker for devops and deployment.

Benefit: Better customer service through Fast Data

Airline customer service agents and flight crew now have reliable access to a myriad of up-to-date passenger information, including survey feedback, frequent flyer details, and preferences. All of these were previously unavailable in paper flight manifests. Agents use this information to better serve customers and to create a more personalized flying experience in today’s competitive airline market.

We run the next generation of fast data systems in the cloud

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