Windows Azure SQL Database Marketplace
part of the Real World Windows Azure series, we talked to Miguel Campos, Chief
Information Officer at Autoplaza about using Windows Azure as a storage
platform for its online classified-ads website. Here's what he had to say:
MSDN: Tell us about Autoplaza
and the services you offer.
is an online classified advertising company based in Mexico City, Mexico. We
are premier website destination for sellers and buyers of automobiles in
Mexico, including consumer-to-consumer and business-to-consumer sales.
MSDN: What were the biggest
challenges that you faced prior to implementing Windows Azure?
Campos: Finding a cost-effective, scalable
infrastructure to support our operations was a critical piece of our continued
has an average inventory of 27,000 classified ads and we used rented servers to
support our operations. However, we had to add new servers every six months-a
time-consuming, costly endeavour. Even with additional servers, we had to limit
the size and number of images customers could upload, and still experienced
intermittent performance issues with the site.
MSDN: Can you describe the
solution you built with Windows Azure to address your need for scalability and
Campos: After evaluating several cloud providers, including Google App Engine and Amazon Simple
Storage Solution, we chose Windows Azure for our storage needs. When a seller
uploads an image to Autoplaza, the image itself is stored in Blob storage
provided by Windows Azure, while the image metadata is stored in the Table
storage service in Windows Azure. Worker roles in Windows Azure process the
images and serve them up to Web roles that post the images on the website with
each associated ad. We can quickly scale up and add additional Web and Worker
roles, Tables, and Blobs as the site grows and storage needs increase.
The Autoplaza website uses
Windows Azure for its storage platform, storing images in Blob storage and
image metadata in Table storage service.
MSDN: What makes your solution
Campos: By using Windows Azure, we can
offer generous limits for the number of images a customer can upload with their
ad. We understand that images are a key component to successful advertising for
our customers and by using Windows Azure and the on-demand scalability, we
increased our limits for number of images per ad from 30 to 100.
MSDN: What kinds of benefits
are you realizing with Windows Azure?
scalability is the key benefit for us because we anticipate that we will
increase our customer base by 15 percent by the end of
2011. With Windows Azure, we can handle that increase-or more-with no problem. Plus,
we've improved the performance of our website. Our website is faster by a
factor of three and we have not experienced any downtime. In addition, we all
but eradicated the cost to maintain and manage servers, which reduced our total
cost of operations by 20 percent.
the full story at: http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000008558
more Windows Azure customer success stories, visit: www.windowsazure.com/evidence