Modernizing a legacy cloud application
The client’s “Compare Tool” allows students to compare various private and federal loan options to an ISA with school-specific branding and to ammortize payment schedules and total cost. The original tool utilized a per-school implementation, deployed as nearly identical, but separate stacks on EC2. When adding a new school, a completely new stack had to be created and deployed.The legacy application was time intensive, requiring more than 2 weeks to onboard new schools. The multiple cloud instances were not cost effective and proved difficult to manage, leaving the tool susceptible to configuration drift and security vulnerabilities. Additionally, the Route 53 A-records were pointed to Elastic IPs (EIPs) to resolve to the EC2 instances. SSL was then terminated on the instance via Lets Encrypt. The default soft limit of 5 EIPs per region, per account is reached quickly with the legacy cloud application.
CleanSlate cloud experts were engaged to work with the client to design and implement a new modern legacy cloud based solution. CleanSlate brought to the table a data-driven solution, eliminating the EC2 backend by creating an API and Lambda solution to function as a single back end for any school, including new schools that may be added in the future. CleanSlate’s cloud team also worked alongside the client internal front-end developer, who was performing a complete rewrite of the customer facing site using React and migrating the hosting solution from Netlify to Amplify Console (S3/CloudFront/Route 53/Certificate Manager). This collaborative partnership allowed for the creation of a seamless solution. Branchbased environments allowed a quick, iterative process while also maintaining control of infrastructure and code rollouts to development and production environments.
Results & Additional Info
The construction of the first release of the application was completed in 6 weeks. The successful implementation has led to faster onboarding time for new schools (hours vs weeks), as well as the elimination of configuration drift since change management is now handled in version control. This migration solved the previous problems of configuring NGINX/ LetsEncrypt certificates and using EIPs to resolve domain A-records to the EC2 instances. Additionally, the retirement of the legacy application means a lower total cost of ownership to manage and secure the application. Along with the new front-end development, and a source countrol driven CI/CD pipeline, this completely modernized application meets the needs of the client and their customers for their immediate needs and future growth.
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