DataSurge: When Performance Matters

Microsoft Consulting Services


Microsoft Consulting Services were engaged by HSBC to improve the performance and scalability of a critical security system, a service that was used by over 30,000 HSBC managers globally. The system was highly complex, utilising many code tiers making analysis and rectification particularly challenging.

MCS hired DataSurge to improve the performance of the existing system:

Together with HSBC, we agreed that the metric for success was to be the perception of speed by end users: Therefore we implemented a number of different logging techniques in order to benchmark the speed of web pages as well as the performance of the underlying database and web services.

With empirical evidence of application performance, we set about prioritising parts of the application to improve performance, employing a multi-pronged approach, identifying bottlenecks in both the web and database code, substantially increasing the performance of the application by up to 30 times and enabling the whole website to process double the load in the same time period.

Having improved performance, we were asked to conduct a full architectural review including server topology, configuration and underlying storage, as well as the highly complex custom data access layer and data replication.

As part of our remit, we wrote an alternative, high-performance data access layer and a proof-of-concept for an efficient multi-page grid. We then advised the application architecture group on future architecture, including business continuity planning.