How Eventbrite cuts through the noise to fix what matters with Sentry

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Eventbrite is used in over 180 countries and had over 4.7 million events in 2019 alone. Eventbrite has a team dedicated to the consumer frontend, which includes the homepage and search pages.

Since using Sentry, Eventbrite has seen the following benefits:

  • Real-time Error Tracking: Get ahead of customer issues by finding problems early
  • Programmatic Issue Grouping: The ability to group and merge related issues to filter the signal from the noise
  • Contextual Debugging and Reporting: All errors include relevant context and stack traces so that engineers can fix issues faster

Challenge

In 2020, events went from in-person to virtual. Jaylum Chen, Staff Software Engineer at Eventbrite, and his team needed to quickly adapt to the new demand as creators from large companies to independent musicians and comedians all were looking to host events online. At the same time, the Eventbrite engineering team was building a plan so they could deploy to production continuously. In order to do so, they needed an application monitoring solution that could help their team discover errors in real-time, eliminate noise, and give them visibility into the health of every release.

Before Sentry

Eventbrite was using another bug tracking tool, however, the error reports were noisy and non-actionable. Developers would be alerted to a series of duplicate or related issues that were not efficiently grouped or managed. Having information overload isn’t useful when a developer is trying to determine if there is a real issue affecting users.

Sentry’s merge issue feature and programmatic grouping helped Jaylum and his team create a list of errors prioritized by user impact and frequency. Unlike triaging in the past, where his team had to parse through countless duplicate issues, with Sentry, the team was solving the most impactful errors.

How Sentry Helped

Sentry was really easy to set up. With just a few lines of code, I was able to immediately capture events across our Python, Javascript, and React Projects.

Installing the Sentry SDK was as simple as copy and paste. Instantly after the installation, Sentry started reporting errors. With features like issue grouping and merging, Jaylum’s team was able to reduce the list of issues and address the most critical ones. To make sure the right teams got in front of the right issues, Eventbrite also installed Sentry’s Slack integration for real-time notifications and Jira integration to quickly get issues on the backlog.

Sentry helps our team fix the most important issues in each release. We can track how a release is trending by percent of crash-free sessions. With this data, we can remediate issues that impact the most users and move on to building more features.

Using Release Health, Eventbrite can improve the quality of a release by gauging the levels of adoption and the percentage of crash-free sessions and crash-free users. Sentry takes the mystery out of debugging and gives the Eventbrite engineering team the context needed to quickly fix an issue. This lets them focus their time on building what’s next rather than debugging hard to find bugs.

Future Plans

Eventbrite sees Release Health as integral in being able to achieve CI/CD to support an increasing number of events. Migrating from their “Core” monolith into microservices also means higher complexity in troubleshooting. Sentry helps the infrastructure and feature teams easily isolate issues by helping developers gauge performance, adoption, and usage. This accelerates Eventbrite’s journey to continuous deployment. What does the future look like for Eventbrite?

I’m excited to use Discover. It gives me insights into our event data so I can spot trends across multiple projects and share dashboards with different feature teams. Most importantly, I can create notifications based on saved queries. I can’t wait to see what we can do next with Sentry.

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of Functional Software, Inc.