Deploying Software at GoCardless: Open-Sourcing our “Getting Started” Tutorial

Lawrence Jones
Jan 12 · 2 min read

Building a modern infrastructure stack is difficult, with a bewildering number of choices to be made. Some technologies complement each other, while others have very different philosophies: it’s easy to get lost.

To help those facing similar challenges, we’re open-sourcing our “Getting Started” tutorial, which is what we ask all GoCardless developers to follow during their onboarding.

Utopia: Tutorials: Getting Started (click here!)

Our stack consists of a number of technologies integrated into a framework we’ve optimistically named Utopia. It aims to help developers build, deploy and operate their services, and leverages:

  • Kubernetes, the compute platform
  • Jsonnet with Ksonnet libraries for templating Kubernetes manifests
  • Utopia Jsonnet library, to encourage consistent deployment patterns
  • The binary, providing commands to operate services
  • Tight integration with our service registry
  • Config Connector, to provision GCP resources through Kubernetes
  • Tekton, for deployment pipelines
  • ArgoCD, for application deployment

Taking about one afternoon, the tutorial has new joiners install their tools, then configure and deploy a small service into a playground Kubernetes cluster.

While people outside of GoCardless won’t be able to run it themselves, it gives a detailed picture of how the technologies work together. As a bonus, you get a sense of how we build infrastructure, and our bar for accompanying documentation.

We hope you find it useful!

Core Infrastructure Team (@GoCardlessEng)

GoCardless has grown a lot in the past few years. When considered from the perspective of an SRE, there have been huge changes:

  • We migrated our entire infrastructure estate from SoftLayer (bare metal machines, rented) into Google Cloud Platform
  • Our technical challenges have grown with our 10x in payment volumnes
  • We went from 20 full-time engineers to >100, and counting!

With our latest $95m funding round, we’re about to grow even faster than we’ve done before.

If you like the sound of our work with Utopia, check out our Site Reliability Engineer job posting. Less SRE, more engineering? Great, we have open Engineering positions too!

Tech @ GoCardless

Sharing experiences from the people building GoCardless