Web Site Scalability
Pagviews Peak Capability
1 19 368 7063 135512 2600000
Oct 1, 2007 Dec 3, 2007 Feb 4, 2008 Apr 6, 2008 Jun 7, 2008 Aug 9, 2008 Oct 14, 2008
The graph displays page views per a day for the Stratfor.com website. As the legend shows, the static line at the top of the graph represents our peak capability in page views per day, while the blue line represents actual traffic. The graph is logarithmic due to the large difference between current traffic levels and the peak capability. The regular downswings are weekends. The large downswing in late December is the launch of the new site during which tracking was interrupted. The upswing in August is the Russia/ Georgia Conflict and illustrates our highest peak traffic days.
Our peak traffic day historically was reached on August 11, 2008 at 165,273 page views. The current system can handle 30 pages/sec which equates to 2.6 million page views a day. The 2.6 million peak load capability was verified with several weeks of load testing consisting of measuring the number of simultaneous random non-duplicate page requests per a second the site could handle before showing response delays.
The graph above and our historical peak shows that the site has never reached 1/10 of the current tested capability. This means a factor of 10 increase can be handled with no slow down.
Scalability for traffic support at above 2.6 million page views a day can be accomplished with Round Robin load balancing.
Round Robin load balancing requires the purchase of extra web and database servers at a combined cost of $7000-$9000 a set, and load balancing hardware.
The Load Balancing hardware would cost initially $7000 - $10000 for a single unit capable of load balancing multiple web servers. For redundancy weʼll want two for $14,000 - $20,000.
Combined initial recommended expenditure for handling traffic above our current peak capabilities of 2.6 million page views a day would be $29,000. Majority of this cost is the load balancing equipment. Scalability in 2.6 million page view increments after that initial expenditure would run $7,000 - $9,000 per a 2.6 million page view capability increment.
IT Corporate Support / Desktop Support
Created Resolved Employees
0 22 44 66 88 110
Oct 7, 2007 Dec 9, 2007 Feb 17, 2008 Apr 27, 2008 Jul 6, 2008 Sep 7, 2008 Nov 7, 2008
The graph above shows employee head count in yellow, IT tickets opened per a week in blue, and IT tickets resolved per a week in green.
An IT TIcket is a submitted request for IT assistance from an employee.
Note: High Ticket count in late 2007 is due to high numbers of non-desktop support tickets associated with the new site launch in late December and are not representative of desktop support load.
Average tickets open/closed a week is roughly 25-30. This is a low estimate despite being derived directly from the ticket system as roughly 4-5 more issues never make it into the system a day. Tickets have a 1.5 hour resolution time average.
This means we has about 45-50 hours of reactionary work a week. Spot checking tickets shows that roughly 30% of these tickets are handled by non-desktop support staff.
Interesting to note we had over 100 employees pre-April and 70 or so now, yet the ticket numbers have not dropped substantially. Due to this, Iʼm weighing my opinion on
number of employees a single desktop support engineer can handle with pre-April 2008 ticket levels in mind.
Considering that employee head count and desktop support load is not a linear relationship, I estimate we will need another desktop engineer when employee head count reaches 110-125 and again at roughly 275 to 300 employees.
Corporate Mail System
Disk space needed per a user is the limiting factor in regards to our mail server capabilities, as such scalability is defined by economically increasing disk space. The current corporate mail system is licensed for 100 users, and will reach capacity at 150 users. Licensing is $40 dollars a year per user. For the next 50 employees we just buy more licensing.
At 150 we will need another server on top of licensing. Zimbra, our server software, is “Cluster” ready. Clustering allows us to buy more similar servers as our head count increases at 150 employee increments and transparently deploy them.
Server cost is $7,000 per mail server. Licensing is incremental per user and can be bought in any quantity. As an example, Mail support for 200 employees would cost $11,000.
Austin Office Phone System
Current phone system is at capacity at 64 extensions. Phone cabinet will have to significantly upgraded or replaced if moving beyond. Pricing on expanding the existing phone system to handle more than 64 Austin Office employees will cost $10,000 - $12,000 for an additional 64 phones. Moving beyond 130 phones for our Austin office will require a complete replacement of our phone system. Rough quotes from phone vendors have placed systems capable of handling 200+ employees at $30,000+.
New Hire Costs
New hires run $0 for new interns, $600-$800 for regular employees, and $1300-$1700 for execs. These prices are based on hardware and software costs for a laptop or desktop as appropriate and standard office software.
Interns are not always “Free”. Multiple interns share computer resources from a pool of older machines in our “Intern pool”. Employee machines when replaced or otherwise retired are often deployed for use by interns if possible. Significant increases in the number of interns could necessitate new desktop machine purchases. At this moment we have 10 spare desktop machines that could support an additional 20-30 interns depending on scheduling.
Based on a record of equipment failure and loss for the past six months, repair costs work out to $8000-$9000 annually.
The table below shows equipment failure or loss and replacement or repair costs for the last 6 months.
Date Name Result Cost
Feb 21, 2008 Rodger Baker Bad/Video - replace
Mar 6, 2008 Karen Hooper Bad Motherboard $500
Apr 29, 2008 Korena Zucha Bad Display $500
May 22, 2008 Korena Zucha Bad Motherboard,
Date Name Result Cost
Jun 30, 2008 Meredith Friedman Stolen $850
Jul 8, 2008 Anya Alfano Power Supply Fail $500
Jul 29, 2008 Julie Shen Bad Motherboard $500
Recurring IT Costs
• Zimbra Mail Server Software - $3,750 Annual ( 125 licenses ) • Clearspace Collaboration Software - $3,625 Annual ( 125 licenses )
• Corenap Internet Services - $4,000 Monthly ( website and corporate Internet ) • Time-Warner Telecom - $1,300 Monthly ( Austin phone service )
Zimbra, Time-Warner Telecom, and Clearspace cost increases are incorporated into new hire costs as detailed above.
Corenap Internet Services could increase by $1,000 - $1,500 a month if website traffic levels triple or quintuple and appropriate bandwidth saving steps are not taken. Image Size optimization and compression can be used to keep current bandwidth pricing steady even with multiplying traffic levels.
Server Inventory, Maintenance and Replacement
SERVER HARDWARE TASKS
smtp.stratfor.com 1U supermicro base layoutmail gateway, mailman lists, dropboxes for clearspace, virus, spam
ns2.stratfor.com ( yorktown ) DELL 2600 DNS Secondary, logging
core.stratfor.com 2U supermicro high-end layoutZIMBRA primary mail server, Clearspace, RT Ticket System, backups
winserv.stratfor.com ( need to rename )IBM server win2003 domain controller, roaming profiles, network printers, file shares
quickbooks.stratfor.com Dell workstation quickbooks
fw.stratfor.com Dell workstation Smoothwall firewall
asterix.stratfor.com Dell 2600 Asterix IPTelephony
tonkin.stratfor.com Dell 2600 IT development
www3.stratfor.com 1U supermicro web layoutPrimary production webserver
queue.stratfor.com 1U supermicro base layoutProduction mail queue, primary dns ( ns.stratfor.com ), nagios
SERVER HARDWARE TASKS
db3.stratfor.com 1u supermicro base layoutSecondary/backup production DB
dev44.stratfor.com 1U supermicro base layoutSpare - Targeted for clearspace, system monitoring, IM Server, and ticket system
www1.stratfor.com Dell 6600 website image hosting
dev.stratfor.com Dell 6600 Primary staging and website development server
www2.stratfor.com 1U supermicro base layoutRedundant production webserver
For 2009 replacement and retirement of the Dell 2600 model servers with our now standard Supermicro based 1U rack mountable servers are required.
The Dell 2600 servers are now approaching 5 years in service and can be considered at the end of their lifespan. Only two are still in production service and both are being used for non-critical or redundant tasks.
A single new server can replace both machines and provide added capacity for future services.
In addition I intend to budget purchase of two new servers of the same type for on hand parts and replacement of any of the current frontline production servers.
A single new server to replace the aging Dell 2600 series machines and re-tasking of the existing “dev44.stratfor.com” provide more than enough capacity for me to
implement foreseen or unforeseen added corporate services.
Additional production website or corporate mail servers and related hardware are contingent on significant traffic, employee head count increases, or as of yet unknown projects from other departments and have been accounted for previously in this
document where possible.