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Drex Labs DAO LLC was founded in 2022 by chief engineer Mike Keen, with a focus on leveraging Web3 technologies to create exciting and interactive products.
Drex Labs’ products enable programmers to build real-time applications based on blockchain data, including consumer and business-facing solutions that encourage interaction and support community management.
Their products include Cardopoly, a groundbreaking blockchain game in which users compete in real time to win digital collectibles and cryptocurrency. They’re also the creators of Drop King, a platform for business-to-consumer connection focused on digital collectibles that help distribute and track blockchain-based products.
Drex Labs might be a new player on the block, but their clever use of technology and commitment to cutting-edge innovation has them primed for growth and expansion. They also have a set of complex and technologically demanding needs.
Drex Labs analyze large quantities of data that their apps collect to find meaningful metrics, so they require reliable, high-throughput bandwidth. Since they’re dedicated to customer-facing applications, they also need stable compute connectivity to ensure they deliver the best user experience and a fast network.
Handling blockchain data results in high demand for data streaming, and with the anticipated growth of Drex Labs, they need all the speed and capacity they can get. They also need high compute availability and the ability to scale instantly, as well as many WebSockets and other connections open at all times that can handle user communications. As their platform becomes more popular, Drex Labs will need even more speed, efficiency, and throughput: Drop King and Cardopoly require infrastructure that can scale as their users grow.
As with any early-stage company, Drex Labs also requires the flexibility that comes with innovation. They need the ability to pivot at a moment’s notice to take advantage of emerging technologies and processes: Vendor lock-in and limited integration simply won’t cut it in the fast-moving world of Web3.
Security was also a key consideration, as Drex Labs handles customer information. It was essential to partner with a cloud provider that could enable them to spin up private compute instances on demand.
Drex Labs started looking for a reliable partner to meet their needs now and in the future, so they turned to market-leading infrastructure provider Vultr. As Keen says, “Vultr is the ideal partner if you need to build cloud solutions, and Vultr has serviced 100% uptime over the last year.”
Drex Labs deploys its services on a rolling basis to a collection of 11 instances hosted on Vultr infrastructure. The service’s main back-end application is a Golang API server residing behind a load balancer which can horizontally scale when needed. Among the 11 instances is a Redis 6 server, and they’re planning to migrate to Redis 7 with Vultr Managed Databases. Drex Labs use Vultr’s DNS and are looking to use Vultr’s “bring your own IP” offering as well.
Drex Labs needed dynamic traffic control: the ability to direct user requests to appropriate instances according to real-time requests served by their applications and to control flexible routing rules. They needed public-facing, stable, and secure networking to serve their public-facing APIs. They needed affordable, on-demand virtual instances with high-performance processing capability and high availability.
Vultr has world-class infrastructure capabilities, with servers, load balancers, stable networking, and communication-enabled support systems. Drex Labs can feel confident that their applications have the dynamic traffic control they need, even when demand increases. And with Vultr’s flexible approach and tech-agnostic design, Drex Labs never need to worry about being painted into a corner.
“Vultr never leaves us in a bad spot and they never embarrass us,” says Keen.
Drex Labs benefit from Vultr’s highly effective notification and support systems, which is one of the reasons why they can maintain such high uptime. With clear communications on anticipated events, such as instance reboots, as well as notifications of similar unexpected events, Drex Labs can take action to ensure slowdowns are minimized, and downtime is virtually eliminated.
The Drex Labs team has also found that Vultr greatly supports them as a small startup. Unlike many cloud partners, it’s easy to reach a real person at Vultr.
Vultr’s solution has been effective, reliable, and affordable for Drex Labs. Keen, who is often building tooling and software late through the night, finds that other partners they work with have frequent technical hiccups that can cost Drex Labs time. He hasn’t had a single issue with Vultr.
“With Vultr in the background,” Keen notes, “we can seem like rockstars while doing what we love: providing our users with top-notch software.”