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SearchStax is launching two-node SolrCloud Clusters with full Zookeeper ensemble support and full scalability. This gives modern high-availability architectures a new, lower entry price point.

Since its launch, Solr has been one of the main options for applications needing high-availability search. And the (not so) new cluster capabilities of SolrCloud further cement this reputation. In nearly every aspect, the SolrCloud architecture is an improvement over the master-slave configuration that preceded it. High-availability: improved. Scalability: added. Flexibility: improved. Manageability: no contest, especially with zookeeper.

The downside is at the low end, in particular with configurations that leverage zookeeper for manageability and scalability. Because ZK requires at least three nodes to form a quorum instead of the two needed for a master-slave setup, the increase in cost and management overhead to switch from a master-slave configuration to a scalable zookeeper-enabled SolrCloud setup is substantial: about 50%.

SearchStax is innovating again with the introduction of two-node Solr clusters, along with a Zookeeper ensemble. The trick is that a third, micro-machine is spun up for the third member in the Zookeeper ensemble. This enables all the Solr Cloud capabilities and allows our clients to scale up from two to n nodes at the touch of a button while keeping the entry point for a cluster architecture affordable. Mid-size applications that require dedicated environments and high-availability search can often make do with two nodes (e.g. Drupal Customers). Other CMS configurations like small Sitecore setups can also benefit in that manner.

This capability is now available for select customers and will be released broadly in the next few months.