Flexisaf Uses Payara Platform on the Cloud

Photo of Veronica Harding by Veronica Harding

Our Payara Enterprise Support Customer, Flexisaf, is using the Payara Platform successfully on the cloud.  Their CTO, Al Amin Ibrahim, explains further details about their deployment architecture and how our support services has helped them with crucial challenges:

Where is Flexisaf located and what services and products does the company offer?

FlexiSAF Edusoft Ltd is located in Abuja, Nigeria. FlexiSAF’s vision is to improve the quality of education using technology through the provision of productivity tools for school administrators and offering platforms that will aid teaching and learning for teachers and students respectively.

Who are your main customers and where are they located?

Our main customers are educational institutions mainly across Nigeria at the moment. These include schools, colleges and universities.

What kind of applications do you run on the Payara Platform?

We run enterprise web applications on Payara Server (Payara Full). Our major applications are the SAF School Management Software (SAFSMS) - (https:safsms.com) with about 500 schools signed up and SAF Tertiary Information Management System (SAFTIMS) (http://srms.ng/) with about 20 tertiary schools and a user base of over 1 million across the two platforms.

Can you give more details about your deployment architecture?

All our major platforms are deployed as cloud services in a multi-tenant architecture. In this way, we maintain a single application version deployed on a cluster of AWS EC2 instances running Payara behind a load balancer in an autoscaling group.

How well is the Payara Platform working in the cloud environment?

It is working very well for our scenario considering the fact that we use Docker containers, we can easily extend the appropriate versions of Payara Servers we want. This has made it flexible and fun. Another concern running on the cloud is usually traffic, which can also be easily handled with the Payara Platform through the appropriate fine tuning of JVM options, EJP pool settings, HTTP settings, acceptor and request threads etc. The Data Grid can also address cache data distribution for JPA cache or user sessions across a cluster of servers.  

What is your favourite tool in the Payara Platform?

Our favourite tool would definitely be the Data Grid. We have read about it and understood how it works. We are currently migrating to Payara Server 5 so that we can set it up to provide a distributed user session across multiple server instances.

Why did FlexiSAF decide to invest in Payara Enterprise Support?

We decided to invest in Payara support for a number of reasons:

We know Steve Millidge (The boss). We know he’s going to do something great. We believe in him.

The expertise of the team. It is clearly apparent that we will be in good hands. We follow the updates and blog contents and it’s an indication of the kind of team you have.

Most importantly, we want to focus on our application domain and let the server experts handle issues related to the application servers such as bug fixes, patches, updates, support for new technologies, etc. We also understand subscribing to Payara Support services will bring shortcuts in setting up the right performance tunings and other optimization hacks.

How has this service helped the business so far?

Well, since our subscription less than 3 months ago, the engagement and commitment by the Payara team has been highly commendable. It has assured our confidence and optimism. Working with the team, we have been able to trace the cause of one of the main challenges we were encountering on eclipse link multi-tenancy library. It has been fixed in a later Payara Server version.

Would you recommend this service to other companies?

Yes, we would highly recommend the Payara Support service to anyone building enterprise applications running on Payara or GlassFish  Servers with a relatively large user base.

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