SOASTA, a provider of cloud-based testing services, has been awarded a cross-cloud grid provisioning patent that lets it leverage more than 500,000 servers across the globe. The goal is to help companies setup tests, so they can avoid crashes and failures caused by an influx of website traffic.
With the patent, Silicon Valley-based SOASTA can simulate hundreds of thousands of users accessing a single app or website simultaneously. It’s ideal for extreme test-cases where people suddenly flood a website. For instance, prior to the London Olympic Games, SOASTA helped staff prepare the official website for millions of people attempting to buy tickets.
Prior to the invention of cross-cloud grid provisioning technology, a lack of servers constrained this kind of performance testing. Setting up servers in the cloud would take hours. However, SOASTA’s can tap into servers in 60 global locations running on 20 providers, including Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Rackspace. Setup takes place in a matter of minutes — even for the largest tests.
“This kind of cloud testing is now done daily by 400 of our corporate customers,” said Tom Lounibos, the company’s CEO in an interview. When asked about whether the unique IP will make the company more attractive to potential acquirers, Lounibos said SOASTA will likely go public.
Analysts agree that it’s an important step for the industry as a whole, and boosts customer’s faith in the cloud. “Cloud computing depends on rapid deployment and on-demand access,” said Melinda Ballou, program director for technology research firm IDC in a statement. This technology can provide now provide “immediate access to those load servers across environments to help with the problems users face when trying to utilize different cloud platforms for testing.”
SOASTA is often billed as Mercury Interactive for the cloud, a testing services provider that was sold for $4.5 billion to HP. It was formed in 2008, and is currently used by 12 out of the 24 top online retailers. It’s most high-profile customers include NASA, Microsoft and Netflix.
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