AiS 35: Scalable Enterprise Applications

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Russell Elledge and I have been conducting interviews at Handmark, looking for help on our Pocket Express and On Demand applications. In this office, we work on the server side, focusing on making these applications robust enough to handle the large numbers of cell phones that are out in the world. So one question that Russell likes to ask our candidates is as follows:

Name five things that you always do in a scalable enterprise application.

This is an open-ended question designed to create discussion and debate, as well as to test the boundaries of their experience. I thought we could all benefit from Russell's experience, so I asked him to answer the question. This is his list:

  1. All information must be a transient in memory.
  2. All information must be in a universally accessible data store or file system.
  3. Use an RPC technology to force the creation of tiers in a system.
  4. Use SOA where possible to help force vertical scalability.
  5. Control your resources.
  6. Author in administrative capability.
  7. Seperate OLTP processing from reporting.
  8. Optimize

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