AWS and Microsoft Technology Centre GAP video
Powered by Windows Azure®, Microsoft’s cloud computing offering, the Global Alerting Platform has been designed from scratch to provide near limitless scalability, high availability and integrity. Distributed across a network of globally inter-connected datacentres, GAP provides a secure way to globally route messages between satellite based messaging devices, corporate systems, search and rescue authorities and personal end points.
Using the ‘compute on demand’ features of Windows Azure, GAP allows for dynamic changes in traffic load ensuring there is always sufficient compute power to cope with growth. Additional compute power can be provisioned at the 'press of a button'. The underlying software has been architected to be horizontally scalable, meaning it scales linearly with increased compute power.
One of the main advantages provided by the platform is robust availability based on extensive redundancy achieved with virtualization technology. GAP provides numerous levels of redundancy to provide maximum availability of customers data. Data is replicated to three separate nodes within the platform to minimize the impact of hardware failures.
Customers can leverage the geographically distributed nature of the platform infrastructure by creating a multiple accounts to provide hot-failover capability. In such a scenario, customers may create custom roles to replicate and synchronize data between datacentres.
Confidentiality ensures that a customer's data is only accessible by authorized entities. GAP provides confidentiality via the following mechanisms:
The platform has multiple levels of monitoring and integrity checking. Each compute node has a monitoring agent that monitors the health of the virtual machine (VM) node on which it runs. If the agent fails to respond, the platform reboots the VM. In case of hardware failure, the platform automatically creates a new hardware node and reprograms the network configuration to restore the service to full availability.