Shutterfly goes to the cloud with no down time with Pythian

1 min read
Sep 1, 2023


Global Engineering Company


Digital Consumer Goods


United States

Shutterfly Inc. is an online publishing service that allows users to store, share, and enjoy billions of photos, turning them into picture books, meaningful cards, imaginative gifts, home decor, personal websites, and much more. In 2013, Shutterfly acquired ThisLife, a cloud-based application used for intuitive photo and video organization, storing, and sharing. Together, ThisLife and Shutterfly provide a solution that allows customers to organize, store, share, and create physical and digital products across web and mobile devices. 

The acquisition of ThisLife brought new challenges in terms of developing a scalable, cloud-based database backend. Shutterfly engineers had already designed a scalable and flexible architecture for the new application and had chosen a sharded MySQL database due to its availability features and ability to cost-effectively scale horizontally. They needed expertise in cloud database replication, sharding, monitoring, and tooling to scale the backend affordably and without causing any disruption to existing customer activity or business operations. 

With only three months until the scheduled launch of the newly integrated product, time was of the essence. Pythian provided the expertise and DevOps team they needed to deploy on time. 

What we did

  • Built, tested, and migrated a sharded MySQL cloud-based environment for operational visibility, backup and recovery, scalability, and fault tolerance  
  • Oversaw the launch, tracked and closed and any gaps, and ensured constant communication between all necessary parties 
  • Provided 24x7 post-migration support

Technologies Used

  • Amazon Web Services  
  • MySQL
  • Amazon RDS 
  • Chef


Key Outcomes

Pythian DevOps and Managed Services was a good investment because we got the environment we needed, when we needed it. In the context of the project, it was a high-value solution that fit our budget.”  

– Charles Howard, DBA manager of Internet Operations, Shutterfly 

0 Downtime

during launch; new databases successfully supported traffic spikes

24x7 support

Services and monitoring

Explore our Database and DevOps Services 

No matter your business, no matter the challenge: Pythian’s solutions drive results.