Brisbane's Cloudtrek saves Prezi partner from disaster

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Brisbane's Cloudtrek saves Prezi partner from disaster

Australian AWS partner CloudTrek has won praise for completing an urgent cloud hosting project for an email campaign targetting up to five million people.

The Brisbane firm had less than three days to setup an AWS solution that could cope with the potential spike in traffic from an email promoting Prezzip, a Netherlands-based firm which makes designs for presentations built with Prezi.

With Prezi planning to send the email promting the offer, which linked to Prezzip's new website, Prezzip discovered its hoster could not scale to handle the potential traffic.

"The site was not able to support this, and they were not able to get anything done over the weekend," said Prezzip co-founder Roelof Hengst.

Hengst approached CloudTrek, which a previous customer of Prezzip. "Fortunately we had the pleasure to create a great Prezi for Brisbane based CloudTrek earlier, and I knew they offer AWS support," said Hengst.

CloudTrek proposed a separate landing page for the promotion, hosted on AWS. An initial version was built overnight, and over the weekend the CloudTrek team extended it into a fully functional and tested setup, ready in time for the launch.

CloudTrek used a combination of Amazon services linked together to provide a highly scalable and robust solution. A static page hosted in S3 was served from the CloudFront content distribution network with points-of-presence in Europe, North America, and Asia.

Page submission hit an API gateway backed by the new Lambda functions, avoiding the need to deploy compute instances. Validated email addresses were stored in a DynamoDB table, and the Lambda functions returned a dynamic, signed URL pointing to a per-customer S3 link to the promotional Prezi templates. Customers could click and access their content while the system recorded page statistics and user metrics to measure the campaign's effectiveness.

Less than three days after Prezzip first contacted CloudTrek, the email campaign began.

Prezzip exceeded all previous visitor records within four minutes of the start of the email campaign, and the new site handled the load without a hitch.

During the campaign, the existing hosting provider infrastructure suffered an outage, taking down the main site for eight hours, and Prezzip was unable to contact their old provider. CloudTrek stepped in and created a temporary "Sorry we are down" page for the main site, but the promotional download packs kept flowing smoothly the whole time.

Prezzip are clearly pleased with CloudTrek's work. "Our ambition is to have a complete AWS solution serviced by CloudTrek installed soon," Hengst said.

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