How Hotwire Uses SharePlex  for AWS Cloud Migration

If you’re one of the busiest travel sites on the internet and want to perform an AWS cloud migration of your bookings database while simultaneously upgrading your Oracle version, you know that any interruption in service could be costly. It’s simply not acceptable to lose transactions due to database downtime – so what do you do?


If you’re Hotwire, you turn to SharePlex® for a complete AWS cloud migration tool and upgrade solution that really delivers zero downtime. Representatives from Hotwire recently shared their story at Oracle OpenWorld, and we have the video to prove it.

They told quite a story that involved an active-active datacenter, bidirectional replication, creating a completely new application stack, conflict resolution, upgrading the Oracle database and not losing a single transaction.


Hotwire used SharePlex to solve three problems that could potentially occur during the migration:

  • Problem 1 – With two active data centers (on-premises and on AWS), it was possible that a customer could create the same transaction or update data in both systems.
  • Problem 2 – Creating a new software stack on AWS and moving customer traffic over takes time – downtime – and could also cause performance issues if the stack isn’t right.
  • Problem 3 – The cloud environment must be able to seamlessly roll back to the original environment in case of problems, and that also involves switching traffic. Remember, both data centers are active.

In addition to the application stack piece of the story, there was also a database piece as Hotwire performed a major platform upgrade from Oracle 11G to 12C.


Hotwire used the bidirectional replication and conflict resolution features of SharePlex to ensure the two active data systems remained synchronized as the upgrade occurred and traffic was split back and forth between them. This was the key differentiator of SharePlex that gave Hotwire the confidence to try their approach.


Essentially, Hotwire set up an Oracle database and SharePlex on AWS and started replicating transactions one-way from on-premises to the cloud, but not posting them. They were held in a post queue from a specific point in time forward. Once the upgraded database was in place, Hotwire instructed SharePlex to reconcile transactions in a specific range of the queue.


Then, Hotwire established the bidirectional replication between the two identical databases. At this stage, the two application stacks are thoroughly tested using internal traffic only. When Hotwire was ready to open the system to the public, they were also able to gradually increase the load of public traffic.


This is a highly-simplified description of Hotwire’s process and how they achieved a successful cloud migration and version upgrade using SharePlex. To get the full story, be sure to watch the video to learn how Hotware accomplished this significant project with zero downtime.

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