February 1, 2021

Empowers Developers with Harness

Table of Contents

Key takeaway

About Vuclip

Vuclip is a leading global technology-driven media company delivering on demand entertainment to emerging markets including India, Southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Vuclip’s market success in on demand entertainment is built on its leadership at the intersection of technology, consumer insights and media.
Viu is a leading OTT Video service by PCCW, and is available in 15 markets with 16 million active users. Viu’s unique value proposition of fresh and localized regional and local premium TV shows, movies, and originals entertains millions of consumers every day.

CI/CD Before Harness

Vuclip has six development teams that deploy to production twice a week.
Deployments in the past were handled by a centralized deployment team that would maintain Jenkins and Chef deployment scripts.

An average rolling deployment would take 4 people approximately 6 hours each to deploy, verify, and complete. Deployment verification was done manually by engineers looking at New Relic and ELK stack.
Production rollbacks would occur roughly once a quarter and would take ~2 hours due to the manual process and scripts.

With 2 deployments per week, Vuclip was spending almost 2,500 engineering hours per year deploying and verifying new application versions.

The Compelling Event

Like many organizations, Vuclip decided to transition from monolithic Xen based on-premises applications to cloud-native microservices running in Google Cloud Platform (GCP) using Docker and Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE).

Automating their existing deployment process to support this migration, therefore, became critical.

Evaluating Harness, Open-Source and ARA Solutions

Vuclip evaluated leading open-source CD tools and commercial ARA software and Harness came out on top.

Harness’s ability to pass any configuration to Kubernetes, their support for init containers, daemon sets, HPA and also tight integration with New Relic and ELK was not available out of the box with any other solution.

Harness was the only solution that fully integrated with our GCP, Kubernetes, APM and Log stack - this allowed us to make decisions fast without human intervention to roll-back or forward.

Jishnu Kinwar | VP Technical Operations | Vuclip

The Harness user interface also stood out. It was simple, clean, and more intuitive – an advantage that would accelerate the adoption of CD within Vuclip. Overall, Harness required less setup, configuration, and maintenance than other solutions.

Automating Deployment Pipelines and Verification

With Harness, Jishnu is able to now empower individual development teams at Vuclip so they can deploy, verify, and rollback on their own. The centralized deployment team manages all deployment pipelines, templates, and configuration.

What took 4 people 6 hours (24 hours) each to rolling deploy & verify now takes 2 people 2 hours each (4 hours) using canary deployments from Harness. In addition, rollbacks have been fully automated from 2 hours to just 15 minutes.

We've already reduced deployment effort from 24 hours to 4 hours with Harness, our end goal is 30 minutes.

Jishnu Kinwar | VP Technical Operations | Vuclip

The Harness ROI

With Harness, Vuclip was able to accelerate their cloud migration and CD project by 4 months.

Over the first twelve months Vulcip expects to save ~2,080 hours (equivalent to $200,000 annual savings) of engineering time spent deploying, verifying deployments and maintaining a homegrown solution.

Vuclip worked together with the Harness customer success team so that development teams were onboarded and early adoption of their CD platform was possible.

“Harness has very good people. They listened, partnered, and advised our team so we know where we’re going with microservices and serverless in the future,” said Jishnu.

In its first month, during a production deployment, Harness was able to automatically identify a slow running critical business transaction in Vuclip’s application (via New Relic), and was able to automatically rollback to the previous working version in just 15 minutes. Over the first year, Harness rollback alone is expected to save 420 minutes of unplanned downtime.

Without Harness, Vuclip would have needed to invest several engineers to build their own basic CD capabilities, with at least one engineer per year to maintain those capabilities. For less than a quarter of the cost of a DevOps engineer, Vuclip was able to leverage Harness’ CD-as-a-Service.

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