When BCcampus decided to host the Moodle Shared Service infrastructure at Simon Fraser University in the summer of 2006, SFU did not support Linux for production systems and was not ready to support MySQL databases for enterprise applications. A decision was made to run Moodle on Sun Solaris while Lambda Solutions provided the Moodle and MySQL support. Fast forward a few years, and SFU now fully supports Linux MySQL for enterprise applications.
During the 4th quarter of 2010, BCcampus deployed a new MySQL master / slave pair on new Dell Servers running Redhat Linux. This migration has dramatically increased the performance and reliability of our service and eliminated the problem of locked tables hanging overnight backup jobs.
For the first quarter of this year we have been busy building a load-balanced Moodle application server cluster. A key benefit of cluster infrastructure is the ability to add servers as the shared services load grows. We are now starting to migrate Vancouver Island University over to the new Moodle application server cluster.
Upcoming upgrades (later this year) will include new higher performance load balancers plus a storage solution that will allow for course archival.
Capilano University and Kwantlen Polytechnic University have indicated they are interested in moving significant portions of their Moodle courses onto the BCcampus Moodle Shared Service.
The future for this shared service certainly seems to be strong.
We also have more information on all the service changes and upgrades BCcampus is planning for spring 2011 here.