As a business intelligence and analytics company, Tableau provides visualization software to help people see and understand data. Based in Seattle, Tableau relies on a robust development support infrastructure as part of its production line to enable consistent delivery of quality products to its more than 29,000 customer accounts worldwide.
Producing code is mission-critical for Tableau. The company’s 400 developers depend on a reliable, always-on support infrastructure to efficiently create, compile and test new code before it is packaged and rolled out to customers. Any downtime or outages will put a stop to code development and testing.
Redundancy and growth challenges
Prior to using colocation services with Internap, Tableau experienced challenges around redundancy and growth limitations. Their two data center locations were prone to power and cooling outages, and these intermittent infrastructure failures resulted in downtime for developers. The instability of the infrastructure also restricted the company’s ability to grow and increase capacity as business expanded.
To address these challenges, Tableau began evaluating managed colocation facilities that would provide redundancy and scalability. Tableau started with eight racks in Internap’s Seattle data center, and quickly grew to 29 racks within one year. The company continues to expand much faster than anticipated, and it plans to have 58 racks by the end of 2015.
Scale – As Tableau experienced unprecedented growth, the ability to scale became extremely important. A large part of this growth can be attributed to the expansion of their automated test infrastructure. In January 2015, Tableau was adding and deleting about 100 VMs per week, but this number skyrocketed to 7000 VMs per week at its peak. The average today remains around 6000. The flexibility provided by Internap’s high-density data center allows Tableau to scale per rack in a secure colocation footprint, and support growth even at a moment’s notice.
Redundancy – Tableau has experienced zero outages related to power and cooling since moving to Internap’s Seattle data center. The facility is designed with N+1 concurrent maintainability, which eliminates single points of failure and prevents disruptions to the infrastructure. Fully redundant power and cooling allow backup systems to take over during planned maintenance or unforeseen outages, providing maximum uptime.
With scalable, redundant colocation services from Internap, Tableau’s developers can remain productive and focus on developing high quality software without worrying about infrastructure restrictions. Tableau is well prepared to support future growth and continue developing the highest quality data visualization software for its customers.