Elasticity and Scalability, Know the Difference

One of the biggest draws for businesses to migrate to the cloud is automation. Being able to automate security responses, automate responses to increases in web traffic, automate reporting, etc. Automation is a key benefit to utilizing the cloud. At some point, though, your business may need to scale up. Not just have elasticity for traffic bursts, but scale for growth. The difference between elasticity and scalability can be confusing because they are so similar, but they serve two different purposes.

The advantages of elasticity and scalability mostly lie in what your goals are. If you need a server to handle individual spikes in traffic, or bursting, then you want elasticity. If a traffic spike happens an elastic system can spin up another server to help handle the increased traffic and temporarily assist with the spike. When the spike dies down, everything automatically goes back to the way it was. It’s all automated, no one has to manually do anything and it’s handled.

If you need your infrastructure to handle sustainable growth year over year, you want scalability. When you’re first starting out as a business, your needs will be very different than a business which has been around for 10 years. You expect a certain level of traffic, a certain number of member accounts in your database when you start. At some point, your business will grow, and your servers need to grow with it. Not only to keep your database intact as those numbers increase, but so that search queries return at the same rate of speed as they always have, no matter how many records there are to search.

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Originally published at https://www.pwvconsultants.com on June 10, 2020.

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PWV Consultants

PWV Consultants

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Taking big ideas and turning them into the tools of process modernization for businesses like yours. A boutique group of experts in the tech & design industry.