This is Segment’s story from monorepo to microservies back to monorepo — “from 100s of problem children to 1 superstar child.”
Software Engineer Alexandra Noonan writes on the Segment Engineering blog:
As time went on, we added over 50 new destinations, and that meant 50 new repos. To ease the burden of developing and maintaining these codebases, we created shared libraries to make common transforms and functionality … Over time, the great benefit we once had of reduced customization between each destination codebase started to reverse. Eventually, all of them were using different versions of these shared libraries.
The woes of operational overhead with each expansion into more microservices.
The number of destinations continued to grow rapidly, with the team adding three destinations per month on average, which meant more repos, more queues, and more services. With our microservice architecture, our operational overhead increased linearly with each added destination. Therefore, we decided to take a step back and rethink the entire pipeline.
One of the original motivations for separating each destination codebase into its own repo was to isolate test failures. However, it turned out this was a false advantage. With destinations separated into their own repos, there was little motivation to clean up failing tests.
I’d love to dig into this story more on The Changelog with the team behind this transition back to a monolith and discuss the deeper details of their lessons learned.