Question: How can I scale ElastiCache Redis with minimal downtime?


To scale an Amazon ElastiCache for Redis cluster without causing significant downtime, you can leverage its built-in scaling capabilities. Here are the steps for two different scenarios:

  1. Scaling Up a Redis Cluster (Vertical Scaling)

Amazon ElastiCache allows you to change the node type to a larger one, effectively scaling up resources. However, this requires a manual failover and results in a short period of unavailability.

import boto3 elasticache = boto3.client('elasticache') response = elasticache.modify_cache_cluster( CacheClusterId='my-cluster', CacheNodeType='new-bigger-node-type', ApplyImmediately=True )

Remember that ApplyImmediately=True will cause a failover to occur as soon as possible.

  1. Adding or Removing Shards from a Redis Cluster (Horizontal Scaling)

Redis on ElastiCache supports sharding, which enables you to partition your data across multiple shards. Adding more shards is a way to increase write capacity and distribute data more widely to reduce the risk of failures.

response = elasticache.modify_replication_group_shard_configuration( ReplicationGroupId='my-replication-group', NodeGroupCount=4, # New number of shards ApplyImmediately=True )

In this scenario, there should be no downtime because adding/removing shards does not interrupt the operation of the existing shards.

However, keep in mind:

  • For write-heavy workloads, it's suggested to use multi-shard setups.
  • While modifying a replication group to add or remove shards, ElastiCache rebalances slots among all existing and new shards, causing some increased latency.
  • It's recommended not to make another major change while slot migration is in progress.

Overall, while there may be brief periods of increased latency or minor disruption, these strategies should help minimize downtime when scaling ElastiCache for Redis. Always remember to monitor your applications during these operations and test changes in a staging environment before applying them to production.

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