Today is Groundhog Day: the day on which a groundhog (named Phil) crawls out of his hole in Punxsutawney, PA and either sees his shadow, meaning we're in for six more weeks of winter, or does not, in which case it will be an early spring. Phil's official keeper is the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club. As you'd expect, the Club has a website: www.groundhog.org.
The site gets a consistent stream of visitors during the year, but every February 2 it gets slammed.
This year, the 125th Anniversary of the Groundhog Day tradition, the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club turned to CloudFlare's free service to help keep its site online during their spike in traffic. To get a sense of the volume, below is the Analytics page for the site which shows over 2.2 million page views over the last 24 hours, spiking at nearly 300,000 per hour this morning.
We're happy to report that CloudFlare did not disappoint Phil or his loyal following. In spite of the Club's backend server crashing at one point, CloudFlare's Always Online feature kept the site online throughout the day and helped substantially decrease the server load. As Glenn Kelly, who helps administer the groundhog.org site just wrote us:
Yesterday afternoon our server experienced an outage due to increased traffic. If CloudFlare were not in place, the entire website would have been offline.
CloudFlare even kept the contents of the site available when the Club took it down for scheduled maintenance late last night. In the end, even with an enormous flood of traffic, according to Glenn there was "zero downtime." And, all the while, CloudFlare's global network helped make the site about 40% faster for visitors worldwide.
Best of all, since Phil did not see his shadow, it looks like it will be an early Spring. The entire team of CloudFlare is proud to have been a little part of bringing that news to the world.