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How migrating from Terraform Cloud made IaC faster and more affordable for Odos

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Summary
Migrating from Terraform Cloud to Spacelift has delivered massive wins for decentralized finance (DeFi) aggregator Odos in terms of IaC cost reductions and speed increases. Alex Norell leads infrastructure and security at the company. He explains why the company moved to Spacelift to manage their infrastructure as code and what the experience has been like.
Company size
9
Engineering team size
5
Stack
AWS, Terraform
odos logo white text

DeFi aggregator Odos turns tokens into other tokens on Ethereum-based blockchains across different decentralized exchanges (DEXs), leaving users fully in control of their assets while Odos provides a data service that allows them to interact efficiently with the blockchain. “We’ve handled over $15 billion in volume through our platform since we launched in April 2022. We’ve had more than a million unique users, with about 250,000 returning every month,” reveals Alex Norell, head of infrastructure and security.

Switching from Terraform Cloud to Spacelift delivered three big wins for Odos:

  1. 5X IaC cost reduction
  2. Speed increase of 100%
  3. Dedicated support for OpenTofu

The challenge

Following some unsatisfactory manual deployments when the company launched, Odos migrated to Hashicorp’s Terraform Cloud to manage their infrastructure and moved from Google Cloud to Amazon Web Services (AWS). Things were running relatively smoothly until Hashicorp announced a shift to a Resources Under Management (RUM) model for pricing. Facing a renewal quote multiple times what they had been paying, the Odos team realized they had to start looking for alternatives to Terraform Cloud. “We needed something that was feature-compatible with TFC and allowed us to grow at a reasonable rate.”

Alex had previously talked to CloudPosse and some friends in the industry about alternative infrastructure-as-code providers, and they all recommended Spacelift. It was time to avail of a free trial

Why they chose Spacelift

Cost was a key factor in the decision to migrate to Spacelift. Odos performs multiple deploys at a time, a practice that was proving expensive with their existing IaC provider. Spacelift offered far more affordable concurrency. In fact, based on Hashicorp’s pricing model, they would have had to pay more than five times the quote they received from Spacelift to get what they needed to run their infrastructure satisfactorily — not just concurrency, but also SSO and adequate coverage for the number of users and applies they require.   

Stark as the price differential was, the decision to move to Spacelift wasn’t exclusively based on costs. “The performance of the runners was significantly better than what we were seeing on Terraform Cloud in terms of the deployed items.” Odos operates a monolithic architecture, deploying between 1,500 and 2,000 resources at a time. Before they started using Spacelift, the time elapsed from commit to plan was about ten minutes. This dropped to about five minutes following migration due to Spacelift’s superior job placement, representing a 100% improvement in speed

Optimal security technology is non-negotiable for Odos, which makes single sign-on (SSO) a vital component of their defenses. This would have been an additional cost with their previous IaC provider, whereas Spacelift offers free SSO with OpenID Connect (OIDC), a protocol that enables devices to verify identities based on authentication done by an authentication server.

The fact that Odos could also deploy frequently and define more of the stack using Terraform were other reasons that made Spacelift a logical choice to replace Terraform Cloud.

The Spacelift experience

Odos performed a complete migration from Terraform Cloud to Spacelift in just two weeks. 

“The Spacelift team was always available to answer questions I had about the migration. We haven’t run into any issues since,” recalls Alex. Once Odos migrated to Spacelift, they were able to adopt a set-it-and-forget-it approach. “We’ve been able to continue to deliver our product without having to worry about infrastructure automation,” explains Alex. 

Everything is running faster now. ”Speed of job placement is something we were noticing affecting our runs on TFC.” 

Impact

“Spacelift has been great to work with. All the support people have been very helpful, but it really does all come back to speed and affordability — which are the big pluses for Spacelift,” reveals Alex.

The Odos team is also hugely supportive of the shift to OpenTofu, the open-source fork of the legacy MPL-licensed Terraform. A community-driven initiative prompted by Hashicorp’s decision to place Terraform under a BUSL license, OpenTofu is now part of the Linux Foundation, and Odos plan to switch to it in Q1 of 2024. “We’re incredibly pleased to be working with one of the teams that stepped up to build and support OpenTofu,” he says. “It was good to see the industry get behind Terraform as an open-source product and then stand behind OpenTofu as the banner holder rather than Hashicorp Terraform.”

In the meantime, Odos continues to deploy every piece of infrastructure exclusively through Spacelift. “Spacelift is a great product, and I’ve been recommending it to everyone who asks,” concludes Alex. 

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