Project Description

About HarperCollins

HarperCollins is the second-largest consumer book publishing in the world. The company publishes approximately 10,000 new books every year in 17 languages and has a print and digital catalog of more than 200,000 titles.

The Challenge

HarperCollins was using several expensive dedicated servers across assorted hosting companies to host their direct-to-consumer and media websites. In order to reduce cost, they decided to migrate to AWS. In order to accomplish their goals, WSM engaged AWS tools to consolidate, migrate, and auto-scale their servers.

The Solution

To transform the direct-to-consumer infrastructure, we developed a program that unfolded over a period of six months.

  1. WSM first assessed the current usage and performance on dedicated servers in order to establish a baseline for usage and performance shortcomings, as well as identify bottlenecks. Using this information, we planned a sustainable automated scaling solution.
  2. Using the AWS API, WSM created auto-scaling policies designed to create an elastic environment that grows and shrinks on demand as necessary server resources change.
  3. Lastly, WSM migrated the websites to EC2 instances using the auto-scaling policies created in step two. Using Puppet for configuration management and remote administration of servers, as well as custom nginx load balancers and updates to Route 53 via the AWS API, the configuration provided the ability to scale down servers without losing active connections to individual websites.

The Results

  • Drastic reduction of costs for the direct-to-consumer department
  • HarperCollins could push their media efforts further without having to worry about impact preventing customer experience
  • Provided a superior, reliable web experience to HarperCollins clients