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DevOps Case Study: Zero downtime updates with Blue/green deployment using AWS Pipeline services

Executive Summary

Havence is a small, passionate start-up dedicated to the empowerment of educators. Providing institutions with innovative solutions that radically revamp the way that teachers, parents and students interact.

This school management system relieves teachers and staff of traditional issues and obstacles such as a reliance on pen & paper approaches.

Customer Challenge

Havence wanted a zero-downtime deployment. A zero-downtime deployment is achieved when we can successfully introduce a new version of application to production without the user experiencing any disruption in the application he is accessing. From the user’s and the company’s point of view it’s the best possible scenario of deployment since new features can be introduced and bugs can be eliminated without any outage. The continuous integration and continuous delivery daily basis ensure new feature releases continuously. Havence wanted to have Code Pipeline deployed in such a way that there will be minimal maintenance with easily manageable services.

Why AWS

There are numerous competitive cloud providers available in the market which offer web services to build the web applications. The choice of AWS services for Web applications is because of a significant number of advantages like distributed computing power, cost savings, scalability, security.

To facilitate with smooth and continuous delivery of services in AWS environment, Havence chose to work with AspireNXT as an IT service provider that is part of AWS Partner Network (APN).

Partner Solution

AspireNXT helped Havence to leverage AWS services to build the best solutions and services by giving up traditional way of application build & adopted modern approach of CI/CD deployment.

Using CI/CD approach of automation triggers, the automatic build to code changes, tests it, and prepares for a production/dev release. This eliminates manual work, delays, errors, and rework. In addition, it enables developers to have a deployment-ready build artifact that passes through a standardized test process.

As a standard practice, AspireNXT adopted CI/CD approach to help the customer with zero-downtime service impact using AWS Blue/Green code deployment technique, where a load balancer, forwards requests to the corresponding environment: production or pre-production. When an update is needed, it will be deployed to the pre-production environment. Then after the test, a configuration setting will switch the load balancer so that pre-production becomes the new production environment, and vice versa.

Architecture Diagram

Results and Benefits

Continuous delivery resulted in speeding up the feedback loop between customers and developers which helped in creating better solutions that customers needed.

DevOps practice drastically reduced the frequency of deployment related problems, and together with various environments, allowed company to deploy often, yet safely.

  • Data Protection tools like AWS Key Management System (KMS), Secret Manager, AWS Certificate Manager.
  • Validating the compliance of AWS services with Trusted Advisor and AWS Config.
  • Safeguarded the environments from external threats with the help of WAF.
  • Enhanced control using IAM Groups, roles and policies.
  • Application health checks and statuses monitoring and Email alerts using AWS SNS topics and Integrated the service with Grafana tool.
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