Building a Resilient ESB Cloud using Availability Zones

When Pentagull began evaluating cloud-computing providers towards the end of 2016 in readiness for launching our ESB cloud, one of our key design objectives was resilience. This may seem obvious, as every cloud provider claims to have extremely high levels of resilience – but we weren’t interested in uptime guarantees and service level agreements – we wanted hard facts about the design of the infrastructure and what features it would provide to back up those uptime promises in real-world failure scenarios. After an extensive evaluation period we eventually chose AWS as our provider – and one of the key factors in that decision was a feature called Availability Zones.

Most cloud providers offer multiple geographically dispersed regions in which they provide cloud services, and AWS is no exception in this regard. However, AWS goes one step further by offering multiple data centres within each region – known as Availability Zones. These data centres are still sufficiently isolated as to protect against the majority of infrastructure issues, but are close enough to offer extremely low latency, high bandwidth links. This makes a huge difference when providing load balanced, redundant services and clustered databases: It is a lot harder to perform effective real-time replication across geographic regions where significant latency may be present. By contrast, the dedicated low latency links between availability zones are perfect for distributed redundancy.

In addition, many of our customers require that their data remains within the UK at all times, so choosing a cloud partner that relies on using alternate locations within the EU for disaster recovery was not an option for us. AWS currently provides a total of 3 UK-based locations, and we make use of all of these in our DR planning. AWS are no longer the only provider to offer Availability Zones, however we believe the fact that AWS was designed and built from the ground up with Availability Zones at its core, rather than as an add-on, is a key advantage when it comes to overall stability.

Our choice of AWS as our cloud services partner will allow us to deliver industry-leading performance and reliability to our ESB cloud customers for many years to come. If you would like to learn more about our ESB cloud offerings, please contact us.

Other news stories

Yet another local authority benefitting from our HWRC booking system
Yet another local authority benefitting from our HWRC booking system

Bristol City Council are our latest customer to go live with our HWRC booking system. The integration of the system will provide effective traffic management and queue reductions at their existing Waste Reuse and Recycling Centres Avonmouth and Days Road. In addition to this, the system will also help manage congestion for the opening of the new site Hartcliffe Way, opening its doors on 21st June, by ensuring every visitor has their own allocated time slot.

ESB 22.04 Released
ESB 22.04 Released

Pentagull is pleased to announce the release of version 22.04 of the ESB platform. This release continues the recent trend of incremental improvements to reliability and usability as well as providing some feature enhancements.

Pentagull welcomes another two customers!
Pentagull welcomes another two customers!

Pentagull are thrilled to announce that South London Waste Partnership’s (SLWP) HWRC booking system and Hertfordshire County council’s commercial waste booking system have both gone live and are already receiving a high volume of bookings.

Providing our support for Ukraine
Providing our support for Ukraine

We are horrified by what’s going on in Ukraine, as I'm sure you are. Particularly cutting are the scenes showing young children and families fleeing a war zone or worse. At least 3 million people have fled their homes to escape conflict in Ukraine. Leaving behind jobs, belongings and loved ones, they now face an uncertain future. This morning we made a donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee.

Things are all go at Pentagull at the moment!
Things are all go at Pentagull at the moment!

Here at Pentagull we are finishing the financial year off with a flurry of activity. South Lanarkshire Council are our latest customer to go live with our HWRC Booking System, meaning they are now seamlessly taking bookings for Carluke Recycling Centre.

Password Advice
Password Advice

We suggest to both our employees and customers that employing a strong password, with a mix of capitalised letters, numbers and special characters is the most effective way of reducing the chance of being compromised by unauthorised access. However, we don’t force regular password changes for several reasons.