Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
CASE STUDY: ZAPIERZapier Aggregates Multiple Analyticsin a Single Dashboard with theNew Relic PlatformFounded in 2011, Zap...
CASE STUDY: ZAPIERSolutionFor Carr, New Relic quickly emerged as the solution to beat. “I testeda few different tools and ...
CASE STUDY: ZAPIERCarr is especially impressed with the plugins created by New Reliccustomer MeetMe, which include the abo...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

New Relic Zapier Case Study Platform

506 views

Published on

Zapier Aggregates Multiple Analytics
in a Single Dashboard with the
New Relic Platform

Published in: Technology
  • Be the first to comment

New Relic Zapier Case Study Platform

  1. 1. CASE STUDY: ZAPIERZapier Aggregates Multiple Analyticsin a Single Dashboard with theNew Relic PlatformFounded in 2011, Zapier enables non-technical usersto push data between hundreds of web applications —including Salesforce, Basecamp and Gmail — with no needto write code or wrangle APIs. The objective is to auto-mate mundane tasks by connecting web applications.A user selects a series of triggers from web applicationsand, when the trigger occurs, a chosen action is launched.Together, the trigger and action are called a Zap. Eachautomatic Zap frees up a user’s time, enabling him or herto do more complex tasks and creative work.EnvironmentZapier runs 50 Linux servers on the Amazon ElasticCompute Cloud (EC2). The company’s web frontendis a Django application split across several servers,with Amazon Elastic Load Balancing (ELB) betweenthem. The backend consists of a dynamic number ofcelery task workers fed by messages published to aRabbitMQ cluster. Zapier also maintains a number ofinternal web services on nginx in front of Gunicornand Node.js processes. Redis handles simple key andvalue stores, with logging handled by Graylog2 andElasticSearch.ChallengesWhen James Carr joined Zapier as a Systems Engineerin January 2013, his first priority was automating andprovisioning servers for optimal performance. He knew,however, that no level of automation would be sufficientwithout an effective monitoring solution in place. “Ifsomething’s breaking, I want to know immediately,” hesays. “For me, monitoring isn’t really an option. It’s a musthave. And if you don’t have the right tool, it can be anincredibly time consuming task. One of my previousemployers had a dedicated team of six people workingon monitoring. That’s just not practical for us — we onlyhave six people in our entire company. So I started sniffingaround for the best option available.”At a GlanceINDUSTRYData integrationLOCATIONMountain View, CaliforniaEMPLOYEESSixUSE CASEComprehensive monitoring toaccelerate on-demand integrationof more than 200 external servicesWHY NEW RELICFull visibility into an extendedapplication environmentHIGHLIGHTS• The New Relic Platform enables Zapier to look at monitoring data from multiple services in a single dashboard• New Relic drives productivity by diagnosing the root cause of issues in minutes, not hours or days• New Relic proactively identifies problems long before those problems affect users
  2. 2. CASE STUDY: ZAPIERSolutionFor Carr, New Relic quickly emerged as the solution to beat. “I testeda few different tools and I was very happy with what I saw in New Relic,”he says. “Best of all, it was easy to implement. I was able to drop it intoour environment and just run with it.”Today, Carr relies on New Relic to monitor CPU utilization. He also makesheavy use of the Python agent to gain greater insight into Zapier’s Djangoapplication. But for him, the most useful feature of all is App Map. “It’salmost like the App Map was built for us,” he says. “We integrate withmore than 200 external services. We make hundreds of millions ofrequests to third party APIs every month and we are anticipating thatwe will be approaching one billion API requests per month before theyear is out. With such a complex extended application environment,a graphical representation of our entire ecosystem is just incrediblyhelpful. By looking at the map in New Relic, we can see which servicesare taking the longest amount of time and which ones have experiencedissues in the last 30 minutes or so. Then we start digging to find out more.”With the introduction of the New Relic Platform, Carr saw an opportunityto gain even greater visibility into all metrics relevant to Zapier. “Someparts of our environment — like Redis, nginx, RabbitMQ and HAProxy —are major pieces of the business,” he says. “We’re constantly logging intothose tools to run a test, then checking New Relic, then going back torun another test. It’s clearly inefficient. I was already trying to figure outhow I could create more integration between New Relic and these otherservices. Then I heard about the platform and it was clear that New Relicwas on the same page.”The New Relic Platform is community-driven, open to any developer whowants to create a plugin either for public consumption or private use.Zapier is already relying on three of the platform’s many extensions: • The RabbitMQ plugin keeps track of queue backlogs over time, proactively identifying scalability issues by generating alerts when Zapier crosses a given threshold of messages in the queue. • The Memcached plugin monitors the amount of memory and number of commands executed per second on cache nodes. The Zapier team uses this data to determine how much of its cache is being utilized — even forecasting necessary adjustments to the caching infrastructure. • The Redis plugin tracks the number of active connections to each Redis instance, the number of commands executed per minute and the total number of keys stored. That way, Zapier can set thresholds for notification when additional resources need to be allocated.Zapier gets better visibility into its technology metrics with the New Relic Platform.“We no longer need to run our own custom metric tracking for allof our resources because we can now get all of that informationinside the New Relic Platform. We can aggregate analytics in asingle app. We don’t waste time looking for data — it’s all in onedashboard. And with each new plugin, we have a new opportunityto save a little more time.”James CarrSystems Engineer, Zapier
  3. 3. CASE STUDY: ZAPIERCarr is especially impressed with the plugins created by New Reliccustomer MeetMe, which include the above-mentioned RabbitMQand Redis extensions. “I subscribe to the platform developer mailinglist and I check out any new plugin related to the services we use,”he says. “Before long, we might even create a plugin to share withthe community. When it comes to open source, the possibilities arepretty much endless.”ResultsWith help from New Relic, Zapier gains insight into problems it wasn’taware of and receives notifications before those problems affect users.“Shortly after implementing this tool, we identified a number of issuesthat were minor, but had the potential to become major,” says Carr.“For example, we had complex SQL queries running on tables that didn’thave indexes. New Relic alerted me to the issue by sending a notificationto my phone and we addressed the problem before it really becamea problem. That kind of proactive insight is invaluable.”By diagnosing issues quickly and with great precision, New Relic isa major productivity enhancer for the Zapier team. “Just last week,we launched a new Chrome extension and we immediately saw reportsof sluggishness on the site,” says Carr. “New Relic showed us that ourresponse times were skyrocketing. We identified the endpoint that wascausing the issue and we provisioned new servers to fix the problem.We were at a coffee shop when all of this happened. The diagnosis tookmaybe 10 minutes and I honestly have no idea how long it would’vetaken without New Relic.”With the introduction of the New Relic Platform, Carr foresees evengreater improvements in productivity. “A good example is theMemcached plugin,” he says. “We no longer need to run a separatescript to monitor Memcached, because we can get all of that informationinside the New Relic Platform. We can aggregate analytics in a singleapp. We don’t waste time looking for data — it’s all in one dashboard.And with each new plugin, we have a new opportunity to save a littlemore time which is great for me and great for Zapier.”“New Relic showed us that our response times began skyrocketingin conjunction with a new feature announcement. We identifiedthe endpoint that was causing the issue and provisioned new serversto handle the increased load while we fixed the problem. We were ata coffee shop when all of this happened. The diagnosis took maybe10 minutes, and I honestly have no idea how long it would’ve takenwithout New Relic.”James CarrSystems Engineer, Zapier© Copyright 2013, New Relic, Inc. All rights reserved. All trademarks, trade names, service marks and logos referenced herein belong to their respective companies. 6.12.13About New RelicNew Relic is an all-in-one SaaS-based application performance management solution that provides comprehensive, real time visibility into web andmobile applications regardless of where they’re run. Our platform combines Real User Monitoring, web monitoring, server monitoring, and iOS andAndroid mobile monitoring in one powerful dashboard experience. Our 40,000+ customers use our cloud solution every day to optimize over 108billion daily performance metrics. Learn more at: newrelic.com.

×