One of India’s top Education company lowers infrastructure operation costs with InfraGuard
By Kislay Chandra
THE GATE ACADEMY is a premiere GATE coaching institute with centers across India. They are one of the first education institutes in India which leverages technology extensively to provide quality GATE coaching to their students. In 2016, they were awarded the fastest growing GATE institute in India. They have also received many industry recognitions and press coverage.
THE GATE ACADEMY is also empaneled with NPIU (National Project Implementation Unit) to provide GATE training under TEQIP-III, implemented as a World Bank assisted project to improve the quality of technical education in the country.
With the kind of growth which The Gate Academy experienced, complexities were inevitable. The idea was to grow exponentially but stay lean at the same time. Operating in the education industry, technology is a huge driving force for them. Founders of The Gate Academy were tech-savvy and they knew that the lean model which they were trying to achieve was possible only if their policies were in place from the beginning.
With rapid increase in student numbers as well as physical centers, the infrastructure was scaling fast. They were heavily using AWS and while it offers a comprehensive dashboard, it is created with the entire landscape in mind, not a specific niche case. Even if someone understands the technology it might be difficult for them to navigate through the console. It needs specific training that could be both time-consuming and frustrating if one wants to concentrate on growing the business. The main areas where The Gate Academy wanted InfraGuard to concentrate were as follows:
- Provide a simplified server management dashboard that will be easier for their employees to manage.
- Enhance efficiency via Automation: Policies once created should work for old instances and new. Reduce new instance addition time to minutes.
- To end SSH key/Password sharing within the company and provide policy-based access to servers
- Granular restriction on actions which can be performed by users
- A centralized way to audit activities based on servers and users with appropriate filters
- A single dashboard but servers segregated based on projects to perform bulk operations like Patch Management, AMI creation, Start/Stop of instances, etc. on a bunch of servers
- To be able to control which server is visible to a user/team and what actions can be performed on them
- Reduce the knowledge gap for employees to manage servers.
InfraGuard’s team merged the business needs with its sophisticated solution. The core of InfraGuard is built on setting and automating policy-based tasks which ensure enhanced efficiency with increased security. Listed below are the solutions which worked for their particular needs:
- The company’s server administration team was onboarded to InfraGuard with roles & privileges as per their assigned job needs. All server management & DevOps were done via the platform after that.
- The two teams worked to create custom policies to automate processes like Key Management, Patch Management, Instance State Management, etc. These policies were then assigned to groups of servers to run at defined time intervals.
- Conceptually, once a user is added to InfraGuard there is no need for SSH or RDP access. From script execution to key-rotations everything can be done without sharing access keys in a controlled and auditable manner. This worked perfectly for their use case.
- Auditing in InfraGuard is done in two different directions - Server and User. These audit pages have appropriate filters and reports are downloadable and shareable. This made Gate Academy’s operations secure and reliable.
- InfraGuard’s project page was built keeping simplification in mind. The team could easily select one or multiple servers from one or multiple projects and perform bulk actions like script executions, update management, instance state changes, and many more.
- The solution is also future-proof. Even if Gate Academy works across different AWS regions, all of their servers can be on-boarded and managed from a single dashboard.
The Gate Academy is on its way to change millions of student lives, and InfraGuard is the perfect long-term partner to ensure that their server infrastructure keeps up with the business growth.