Case Study - Lower TCO & Read Replicas

A leading provider of mobile promotion solutions lowers TCO on AWS with CloudBasic


Overcomes Multi-AZ shortcomings of AWS by using CloudBasic’s RDS AlwaysOn to get fully accessible Read Replicas; Lowers costs thanks to CloudBasic’s support for SQL Web Edition

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The client, a publicly listed advertising company, powers the cross-device promotional programs of prominent brands and retailers around the globe via its signature incentive marketing technology platform hosted on AWS. The company uses a fully managed RDS SQL Server Enterprise edition with Multi-AZ mirroring and encryption. However, access to the mirrored SQL Server instance is not offered by AWS, curtailing the client’s ability to offload the primary database server and use the standby replica for reporting purposes. To offload the primary RDS, and get read access to the mirrored SQL Server instance, the client used CloudBasic's RDS AlwaysOn to replicate multiple databases to RDS SQL Servers Web Editions for their public facing reporting portal, greatly reducing TCO in the process.

The Client

A leading provider of mobile promotion solutions improves TCO on AWS with CloudBasicThe client is a public advertising company, with offices around the globe. It provides marketing promotions, rebates and loyalty solutions to a long list of diverse customers, including Fortune 500 brands, and prominent ad agencies. It launched in 2007 with the mission to bridge traditional advertising with mobile technology.

In the decade that followed the company experienced consistent growth and broadened the scope of its services to include receipt processing, loyalty, rebates, contests & promotions, rewards, mobile messaging, data analytics, and other technology driven marketing solutions, ultimately becoming a global leader in shopper marketing and mobile promotion solutions.

The Case

At the core of the company services lies a sophisticated incentive marketing technology platform, which powers a comprehensive suite of solutions. With millions of interactions generated by the clients and their respective users, the system accumulates enormous amounts of user and transaction data.

An advanced technology platform of this scale is a natural fit for the cloud. The company chose AWS, deploying an RDS SQL Server Enterprise Edition with Encryption and Multi-Zone Mirroring.
While Amazon’s Multi-AZ service, which replicates the data from the primary database to a standby instance in a different Availability Zone (AZ), provides peace of mind with protection against infrastructure failure, it does not provide access to the standby replica. Consequently, users benefit from the “Increased Availability” only in the event of Availability Zone failure or other qualified events, when the automatic fail-over kicks in.

With the heavy read loads on the databases, particularly from the client-facing data analytics tools, the company really needs to use the DB replicas, for reporting and other load balancing purposes.

The Solution

AWS RDS Multi-AZ vs. CloudBasic's RDS AlwaysOn

With CloudBasic’s RDS AlwaysOn you can deploy true Multi-Region server replication scenarios, even with MS SQL Server Web Edition, with full access to the Read-Replica, while still paying 1/2 less than the AWS Multi-AZ deployment. View sample replication scenarios to compare cost and benefits.

CloudBasic’s RDS AlwaysOn Geo-Replicate for RDS / SQL Server was the perfect fit for this situation. While many clients use it to create secondary standby databases for Disaster Recovery, the convenient access to the standby DB replica has made it a popular tool to balance read loads for Reporting, Business Intelligence (BI), and demanding data analytics applications.

To offload the primary RDS, and to get around the RDS Multi-AZ shortcoming of not providing access to the mirrored SQL Server instance, the client used RDS AlwaysOn to replicate more than 20 databases to RDS SQL Servers for their client-facing reporting portal.

CloudBasic’s support for SQL Web Edition with asynchronous replication allows the replica RDS SQL Server to be a smaller, less expensive type.

The Results

Taking full advantage of a mirrored RDS SQL Server, while substantially reducing TCO in the process!

If the client had chosen the classic synchronous replication, their replica RDS would have been RDS SQL Server Enterprise Edition, which comes with the hefty price tag of $5.81 per hour  (r3.2Xlarge, Virginia), or $50,756 per year.

However, thanks to CloudBasic's asynchronous support, which costs only $0.42/h, or $3,669/year, the client was able to use the smaller RDS M3.Large instead. This resulted in annual savings of $47,087 for each primary RDS SQL server.

Leverage the cloud at its best! For more information about CloudBasic and its cloud technology products and services, please contact CloudBasic.

RDS Always-On/Geo-Replicate (Multi-AR) for SQL Server HA/DR

RDS SQL Server Multi-AZ and Multi-AR (Cross-Region) Readable-Replicas for HA/DR, reporting, off-loading of primaries. On-Premise to AWS replication for Cloud HA/DR.

View product details

You'll be in good company:

Amazing Product for RDS SQL Server replication


Cloudbasic RDS Always-On/Geo-Replicate for SQL Server provided us with just what we were looking for. It saved us a lot of time during our migration process by taking care of the database schema replication and keeping large amounts of data in sync. Also, the support has been amazing in terms of being available in-spite of the time zone differences. Read full review >>

Bernadette Hensley

Great product, fantastic support team!

We’re a small, growing company so our AWS budget is tight and the CloudBasic replication product is the perfect solution for our needs. This product has allowed us to implement a reliable, near real-time replication solution without resorting to expensive SQL Server/RDS replication solutions. The CloudBasic product has proven to be fast, reliable, easy to set up, use and manage.

Before our AWS migration we managed our own physical SQL Server installation and used SQL Server log shipping to sync our online and reporting databases with typical latencies of 15-30 minute range. With the CloudBasic solution our latencies are now in the 2-5 second range…  Read full review >>

Damien Hanna, Roomex Limited

CloudBasic is an AWS Rockstar!

The CloudBasic RDS Always-On/Geo-Replicate for SQL Server solution is an absolute lifesaver when working with RDS SQL Server! SQL Server on RDS falls short in a lot of aspects when it comes to replication and disaster recovery, and this solution makes the process seamless. We’re able to migrate very large amounts of data and keep the in sync while we move applications around, as well as create usable read-replicas that RDS simply doesn’t provide. Anytime we’ve run into any snags in the process, CloudBasic support has been right there available to help get things going right away. I’m truly impressed with the product and the company behind it! Read full review >>

Chris Kizziar

five-starsGreat product, simplifies architecture and hassle free

CLOUDBASIC RDS Always-On/Geo-Replicate for SQL Server HA/DR/Redshift/S3 provided us a way to replicate multiple on site MSSQL DBs to other datacenters as well as Amazon RDS\EC2 and also from the cloud into our datacenters. After spending weeks of investigating how we could manage this using SQL’s own replication or writing our own replication jobs we found Cloudbasic. We were up and running within a hour and our DBA team could test replication paths hassle free and have full control over the source and destination DBs. The ability to replicate into SQL Web version saves us $10,000’s every year whilst maintaining the ability to have read\write replicas. The Cloudbasic support has been fantastic, helping us with any questions we have and also releasing new features to meet specific needs, we couldn’t ask for more from a product support group. I would highly recommend you trial this product if you are looking at any form of hybrid MSSQL replication and want the most cost optimised solution that works straight out the box (AMI). Read full review >>


five-starsExcellent product and support!

CloudBasic RDS AlwaysOn/Geo-Replicate for SQL Server HA/DR is an excellent product backed by great support. Using the pre-configured AMI we were up and running in minutes. Used CloudBasic to migrate SQL Server databases into RDS, followed by setting up cross-region Multi-AR RDS SQL replications for Disaster Recovery and Multi-AZ High Availability. It works well with RDS Multi-AZ, creates SQL Server read-replicas which can be used for reporting, data-locality and offloading of primary RDS SQL Servers. With help form the responsive CloudBasic support team we were able to migrate our databases with no down time. Setting up DR and HA was straightforward.

I strongly recommend the product and the CloudBasic advisory support team…  Read full review >>


five-starsI’m really happy I found your product

I’m really happy I found your product as there are not many options for this sort of thing with RDS and SQL Server.


Daniel O’Connor,

five-starsDoes what it says on the box, easy to use, amazing support.

I found this tool when I was looking for a way to transfer databases between our development systems and our production systems. These comprised of a mix of in house physical SQL, EC2 SQL and and RDS. Cloudbasic Geo-replicate solved this problem.

The product improvements I asked for were implemented within days allowing me to extend our use of this product into our devops continuous delivery model.

Oniqua Cloud

five-starsAffordable SQL Server High Availability Solution

As a consultant I look for affordable and easy to maintain solutions for my customers. This SQL Server HA solution features a simple web interface. I did not have to worry about configuring server clusters, log shipping etc. I was able to setup a DB instance replication to a cross-region AlwaysOn RDS in minutes. I was pleasantly surprised that MSSQL Web Edition is also supported. I had to call for support related to DB issues on my end. I was assigned a dedicated support representative who proved to be very helpful. I did an extensive testing to ensure that this product is very reliable. With this product I am planning to scale up my Cloud Disaster Recovery implementation efforts.

Nick Semer, IT Consultant

five-starsSimple, Powerful, with Stellar Support


The software delivers what it promises. Its easy to use. The support is fantastic. We were impressed how fast they reached out to us to want to help. The software is fast, economical and affordable. It doesn’t put any stress on your source and destination databases. It seamlessly does what it does and it does it well. I highly recommend this product to anyone.

Otelz Development Team

five-starsSimple cross-region RDS replication solution

We were looking for a way to continuously replicate our RDS based SQL Servers from west to east coast, for disaster recovery and reporting purposes. We started from looking for a SQL Server log shipping and high availability based solution ..then found CloudBasic’s Geo-Replicate server. We launched the server from the market place, entered RDS source and destination information and within minutes were able to stream data. The secondary DBs seeded very fast, and … Read All

Radmeister, Inc.

five-starsEasy setup. Various deployment scenarios.

We were looking to utilize AWS as a fail-over site for our on-premise SQL Server based applications. We turned to the AWS Market place to find solutions to help us speed up implementation. Found this product, and within minutes were able to steam SQL Server data to an RDS SQL Server on AWS. All we had to do is enter source and destination SQL server connection strings. Then selected if we wanted a one time migration of the SQL server or also… Read full review >>

J.P., Solution Architect

five-starsWorks very well. Easy to use. Some minor issues need to be addressed.

We intended to use this software to do a one time migration of SQL databases from our co-located datacenter to AWS. Then figured it is very easy to setup continuous replication from East to West coast (AWS in California to AWS in Virginia). We currently use EC2 SQL Server Web edition in California, replicating to a small RDS Web Edition in Virginia… Read full review >>

John M.

five-starsSimple and inexpensive solution to replicate SQL Servers from West to East coast

Our customer base spans 100+ hospitals, including Tenet Healthcare, Baptist Health of South Florida and Texas Health Resources. We migrated our systems to AWS a year ago. Then shortly after, as part of our business continuity planning, selected the pre-AWS Marketplace version of CLOUDBASIC REPLICATE to … Read full review >>

Versant Holdings, LLC

five-stars-review-on-AWS-MarketplacePowerful Yet Simple Replication Solution

The most important feature we were looking for was to be able to access the end point of the replica for our reporting. This product replicates between SQL servers manages by us. We have to ensure the destination SQL Server is used in read-only mode, but this gives us the flexibility to setup replication in various scenarios: on-prem to AWS, across AWS regions, zone-to-zone. It does seem that SQL Server Web edition is supported in all scenarios as well… Read full review >>

George K.

five-starsCloudBasic SQL Migrate to RDS Solution

I used CloudBasic to Migrate my SQL2012 to an RDS 2012 instance. Install of CloudBasic was easy and once the connection strings were set on the CloudBasic Server webpage, my database connectivity was verified and the db migrated very fast to the RDS instance. CloudBasic is the easiest and fastest solution to replicate your data to an RDS instance for production and or testing. Thank You for making my job easier!!! Read full review >>

Tampa Bay Times

five-starsCloudBasic works great! Easy to setup and comes with outstanding support.

CloudBasic has a nice web user interface. There’s a quick setup feature to start replicating your databases in minutes after you setup the AMI from Amazon’s Marketplace. If you have any questions, RJ and their support team will go to great lengths to make sure CloudBasic gives you the ROI that you’re looking for in a database replication solution. Awesome product. Read full review >>

AnswerFirst Communications