Cost-efficient Auto-scaling of Container-based Elastic Processes

Gerta Sheganaku, Stefan Schulte, Philipp Waibel, Ingo Weber

In business process landscapes, a common challenge is to provide the necessary computational resources to enact the single process steps. One well-known approach to solve this issue in a cost-efficient way is to use the notion of elasticity, i.e., to provide cloud-based computational resources in a rapid fashion and to enact the single process steps on these resources. Existing approaches to provide elastic processes are mostly based on Virtual Machines (VMs). Utilizing container technologies could enable a more fine-grained allocation of process steps to computational resources, leading to a better resource utilization and improved cost efficiency. In this paper, we propose an approach to optimize resource allocation for elastic processes by applying a four-fold auto-scaling approach. The main goal is to minimize the cost of process enactments by using containers. To this end, we formulate and implement a multi-objective optimization problem applying Mixed-Integer Linear Programming and use a transformation step to allocate software services to containers. We thoroughly evaluate the optimization problem and show that it can lead to significant cost savings while maintaining Service Lev

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