Fastly > Case Studies > LaunchDarkly's Performance Enhancement with Fastly's Compute@Edge

LaunchDarkly's Performance Enhancement with Fastly's Compute@Edge

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Technology Category
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) - Cloud Middleware & Microservices
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS) - Application Development Platforms
Applicable Industries
  • Cement
  • Construction & Infrastructure
Applicable Functions
  • Maintenance
  • Product Research & Development
Use Cases
  • Construction Management
  • Time Sensitive Networking
The Challenge
LaunchDarkly, a pioneer in the field of Feature Management, was facing a challenge with its software development kit (SDK) in polling mode. The company was experiencing initialization rates of over one second in several locations worldwide, which was negatively impacting page-load times. This was due to the need to run logic at the origin for their flag management service, and some regions were simply too far away to be highly performant. This latency issue was a concern for clients with global customer bases, who were hesitant to use feature flags for certain use cases due to the potential for excessive latency. LaunchDarkly needed a solution that would bring their feature flagging service closer and faster to their customers, without compromising on security, performance, or resilience.
About The Customer
LaunchDarkly is a software company that has pioneered the practice of Feature Management since its founding in 2014. The company provides a platform that allows customers to use feature flags at scale, enabling them to deploy new features faster and with less risk. Feature flags allow LaunchDarkly's customers to deliver a specific feature to some or all users, with the ability to roll back in milliseconds without affecting user experience or breaking SLAs for uptime. The company has a global customer base and is committed to delivering a service that is secure, performant, and resilient.
The Solution
LaunchDarkly turned to Fastly's Compute@Edge platform to address their latency issues. They built Flagbearer@Edge, which moved flag evaluation to the edge, using Compute@Edge as its foundation. This meant that most requests to Flagbearer@Edge would get a response from one of Fastly's geographically distributed POPs rather than traveling back to the US-based origin. This solution significantly reduced latency, cutting it from hundreds of milliseconds to tens of milliseconds anywhere in the world. Furthermore, LaunchDarkly was able to leverage Fastly’s globally distributed network to provide the benefits of Flagbearer@Edge to customers quickly and efficiently. Now, up to 100% of production polling traffic is served using Compute@Edge, demonstrating the effectiveness of this solution.
Operational Impact
  • The implementation of Fastly's Compute@Edge platform has brought significant operational benefits to LaunchDarkly. The company was able to build a proof of concept for using Compute@Edge and get it up and running relatively quickly, demonstrating the ease of onboarding. The reliability of Compute@Edge has also been confirmed, meaning the team can spend less time worrying about the infrastructure piece of the design and more time investing in other areas. Furthermore, Fastly’s Enterprise Support has been instrumental in ensuring a smooth implementation process and ongoing operation. The team at LaunchDarkly now has the confidence that their system will work correctly without requiring constant maintenance, freeing them up to focus on developing new ways to enhance their service.
Quantitative Benefit
  • Latency was cut from hundreds of milliseconds to tens of milliseconds
  • Up to 100% of production polling traffic is now served using Compute@Edge
  • Average initialization time is down to 25 milliseconds

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