EDB Ark creates fully-functioning, cloud-based, high-availability database clusters of various sizes complete with replication, load balancing, connection pooling, backup and failover capabilities. An EDB Ark cluster can be defined in minutes without any special database knowledge or skills. This characteristic is greatly appreciated by application developers who want to create robust, data-intensive applications quickly, and who may not have the time, inclination, or skills to otherwise achieve the same results. This type of black box setup was designed to dramatically increase the productivity of developers, DBAs, and system administrators alike.However, there are many users who, while enjoying the black box benefits described above, prefer to take a more hands-on approach to managing their databases. EDB Ark was also designed with these users in mind.You can also use supporting components to extend the functionality of your EDB Ark cluster; the following sections provide an overview of how to add an extension to a new or existing cluster.