Can Support 100 Million Users Per Hour Under Air Force, GSA Collab

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The tech-savvy Kessel Run division of the Air Force and the GSA’s Technology Transformation Services worked together to improve customer service on the federal government's cloud software platform.

A division of the Air Force and the General Services Administration’s Technology Transformation Services announced a partnership Wednesday to help the platform support more users on its network. 

The Kessel Run division of the Air Force entered the partnership with the TTS to help improve customer service on, as agencies turn to it as a modernization solution for them to build new applications and digital services. As the software-focused branch of the Air Force, Kessel Run supported the TTS to help scale’s bandwidth to support 100 million users per hour. 

“This is a great example of an interagency collaboration yielding concrete, scalable results and governmentwide benefits,” said Dave Zvenyach, the director of the GSA’s TTS. “The capability developed as a result of this partnership is another milestone in our efforts to improve digital service delivery and ensure an effective, equitable, and secure digital infrastructure for the public.”

A team within the TTS built out a shared online platform that has the bandwidth to support large spikes in online user traffic, while Kessel Run’s Bowcaster team provided “Chaos Engineering,” which helped support the 100 million post requests. 

Kessel Run officials specifically provided penetration testing, load testing and other testing and scaling services. 

“From a reliability and resilience perspective, we wanted to push the system to the limit, so we tossed everything, including the kitchen sink, at it,” said Omar Marrero, the Chaos and Performance Tech Lead and Deputy Test Chief within Kessel Run. “Based on those steps they were able to re-architect their deployment to handle a surge, until we got to the point where we were able to blast it with the 100 million users without any issues.”

Officials from both teams took 10 days to configure the platform. 

This partnership is a new chapter in the federal government’s bid to improve customer service through modernization, a pillar in the Biden administration's larger push for overhaul in the technology belying the federal government.