After more than a year of work this last friday, we turned the first paysite (Not safe for work) live on the new architecture. Of course we purposely choose the site that gets the least traffic so that we can make mistakes and not lose money. This is a huge milestone for us because it means that we can now quickly convert the other 13 higher traffic sites over to the new system and start adding new features.
I know what you are thinking... a year of work? It took you that long? Well, when we first started, we really walked into a big mess that needed to be cleaned up first. Nothing was documented so making changes almost always caused something to break, the network was a mess, we were only using the CDN to distribute our promo (free) content, our servers were getting hacked left and right, we needed to hire more people to help us get the work done, we replaced our entire affiliate system with an off the self product (twice... the first one didn't work out) and on and on.
It has been a long road, but I feel like there is some light at the end of the tunnel and I'm happy and proud to have contributed to it. The whole team worked really well together to accomplished quite a bit. I've also learned quite a bit about this industry as well as my own. I've gained a lot of experience with the latest Java technologies (JBoss4, EJB3, Hibernate), deploying secured content to CDN's, affiliate systems and single signon (SSO) systems across second level domains.