Watch any kid at a local gaming arcade and you're likely to see a pocket full of game tickets that can be cashed in for stuffed animals, toys or, perhaps, a new pet goldfish. Collecting game tickets in the physical world is easy. Reach a level of success while playing a game and you'll be rewarded for your efforts; reach a higher level and you'll earn even more tickets.
Creating an online game where users can earn tickets that can later be "cashed in" can be a challenging proposition, however. Six Degrees Games, an online publisher of sports entertainment based in Marina Del Rey, Calif., has developed a virtual sports destination, www.ActionAllstars.com, that enables tweens to play games, save their results, and earn credits that can later be cashed in to expand their online gaming experience.
The company currently averages more than one million avatars ("Athletes") created every month and each player has the ability to customize their identities, accumulate game credits and buy virtual prizes. This combination of users, identities, games-in-play, credits and prizes generates a lot of data at a very fast pace — all of which is core to Six Degrees Games. In order to ensure that user data is never lost, Six Degrees Games turned to Zmanda, the leader in open source and cloud backup and recovery solutions, to backup all company servers and company data warehouses on a daily basis.
Six Degrees Games data backup and recovery strategy utilizes Zmanda Recovery Manager, an open source, enterprise-class backup and recovery solution designed to help MySQL database administrators prevent the serious damage caused by data loss in the event of a human error or a system failure. ZRM is designed specifically for MySQL databases and includes unique, enterprise-grade features such as MySQL storage engine and snapshot intelligence, replication support, and integration of backup operations with MySQL binary logs.
Six Degrees Games uses ZRM to backup three MySQL databases running on CentOS Linux. Databases use a combination of InnoDB, MyISAM and Archive Storage Engines. In addition to regular full backups, the company completes an incremental backup of MySQL every 15 minutes, in order to be able to quickly recover to any point in time after a data loss situation.
"ZRM helps us formalize and automate the backup process for all our production data, and consolidates all backups from different systems into one consistent platform," said Franck Leveneur, senior data architect, Six Degrees Games, Inc. "Furthermore, the ZRM platform greatly simplified our production systems' recovery scenarios by reducing the number of steps required in the data recovery process."
ZRM's compression feature enables Six Degrees Games to condense data at a 10:1 ratio, thereby saving a significant amount of disk space. Six Degree Games identified four ZRM strengths as key reasons why the company selected Zmanda's solution: ZRM's ability to provide a central place to backup all information; the browser-based management console, which allows the company to manage backup operations from anywhere; ZRM's excellent compression capabilities; and ZRM's comprehensive reporting feature.
Six Degrees Games also utilized Zmanda's support, training and consulting services during the installation process.