high traffic web sites and online scalability

Posted on 2014-04-03
Last Modified: 2014-04-10

As a business system analyst what you need to consider to handle a high traffic website and massive online scalability?

Thanks in advance
Question by:shmz
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LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
ID: 39975597
What do you consider high traffic?

Author Comment

ID: 39976209
that is a question I would like explanation too. :)
LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
ID: 39976394
What kind of traffic did you get last year?  What kind of traffic are you getting now?  What do you project in 2015, 2016, 2020?  

How many unique visitors?  How many pages are they visiting?

Do you require a lot of data required to server your pages?  What type? CMS or are there extensive queries and calculations?

Is your data 1000 rows, 10,000 rows, 100,000 rows or millions?

Is your traffic steady 24hrs a day or do you get slammed at 7am?

What is the peak usage?  

> what you need to consider to handle a high traffic website
The questions above will work.

When you say "massive", I know a little store down the street what feels like 3,000 visitors to their site is massive while google may get over 30,000 searches per second.  What you mean by massive is relative.  

If you have a static website vs heavy data needs plays into this.
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Author Comment

ID: 39978867
And what technologies/tools/software a would help in managing high traffic website?
LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
ID: 39979361
What kind of project is this for?

Author Comment

ID: 39979525
I need to prepare myself for a project with high traffic and massive scalability. That's all I know and hence need some brain storming here to figure if I can take it. :)
LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
ID: 39979586
shmz, I have asked you some leading questions in order to get a handle on what you want and you are just returning vague answers.  I have no idea if massive to you means what can your $9.99 monthly hosting handle or do you expect 200 million monthly visitors.  Is your site static or a web app, data requirements etc.   All of this goes into your mix.  Do you expect instant "massive" or a ramp up.

I think step one should be to better define what this is and what a high/low estimate is for years 1,2,3,4,5...  Is budget a factor?  What is that budget?  Is the content static, updated regularly or updated by the second.

If it helps you to visualize what potential traffic could be, here is a list starting with google that includes imagr and to skype and to are you size? or maybe the size of

The more info you can detail, the better info you can get back.

Author Comment

ID: 39982002
Hi Scott,

Thanks for your response.

Lets say I have a online gaming web application, with 3000 unique visitors per week.

would this be helpful to answer my question?

Thanks in advance
LVL 53

Accepted Solution

Scott Fell,  EE MVE earned 500 total points
ID: 39982491
shmz, many times things that are very clear in my mind are just the opposite to others.  That may be the case here.  I'm sure you have a clear vision in your head of what you are trying to accomplish, but it is not coming off like that.

I said early on, a term like, "massive" is relative and means different things to different people.  Knowing you are talking about A) a game and B) 3,000 unique weekly visitors is a lot more helpful than not knowing this and gives us some perspective.  

Getting back to your question, "what you need to consider to handle a high traffic website and massive online scalability?"

All of the items I have asked of you here http:#a39976394 are things to consider.  You will also want to consider actual usage.  Knowing unique users is what I want to know for marketing reason.  Also in marketing, the last thing we care about are 'hits'.  But that does not help in determining what you need under the hood.  Your considerations will be just the opposite.  

Do those 3,000 people come once a week? or do they actually play every day for hours at a time?

When they play, do they just need to hit the server a few times?  Or are they pressing buttons that send a request to a server 60 times a minute?

Are 3,000 people on at one time?  Or is the average just a fraction of that?

When they are on, is it steady 24hrs a day?  Or are there peak times and days you need to watch for?

Each time they send a request to the server, is processing done in real time or are you taking requests throughout the day and at pre determined times are you compiling all the data and then updating  players dashboard?

I am not asking you to directly answer these questions, but these are things you need to consider. It comes down to how many times per second are you hitting the server and database.

Another consideration is budget.  Do you have a Lamborghini budget or can you only afford a shared bus ride?  

Is it better to buy or rent?  If it were me, I would probably not bother trying to manage all the server infrastructure and just worry about my game/app.  There are plenty of sources for app/game hosting like

Overall, working with 3,000 gamers does not sound like a lot of users to me.  Especially if only a fraction of that are on at any one time.

Some interesting reading for you.

Best of luck on your project.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 39992199
Thanks Scott.
Very detailed and knowledgeable.
The provided links were are also great.

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