Gremlin, the product that’s bringing chaos engineering to a huge range of organizations, announced today that it has added a new feature to its product: container discovery. Container discovery will make it easier to run chaos engineering tests alongside Docker.
Chaos engineering and containers have always been closely related – arguably the loosely coupled architectural style of modern software driven by containers has, in turn, led to an increased demand for chaos engineering to improve software resiliency.
Matt Fornaciari, Gremlin CTO, explains that “with today’s updates to the Gremlin platform, DevOps teams will be able to drastically improve the reliability of Docker in production.”
What does Gremlin’s new container discovery feature do?
Container discovery will do 2 things: it will make it easier for engineers to identify specific Docker containers, but more importantly, it will also allow them to simulate attacks or errors within those containerized environments.
The real benefit of this is that it makes the testing process so much easier for engineers. Containers are, the press release notes, “often highly dynamic, ephemeral, and difficult to pinpoint at a given moment,” which means identifying and isolating a particular container to run a ‘chaos test’ on can ordinarily be very challenging and time consuming.
Gremlin has been working with the engineering team at Under Armour. Paul Osman, Senior Engineering Manager says that “we use Gremlin to test various failure scenarios and build confidence in the resiliency of our microservices.” This new feature could save the engineers a lot of time, as he explains: “the ability to target containerized services with an easy-to-use UI has reduced the amount of time it takes us to do fault injection significantly.”
Why is Docker such a big deal for Gremlin?
As noted above, chaos engineering and containers are part of the same wider shift in software architectural styles. With Docker leading the way when it comes to containerization – its market share growing healthily – making it easier to perform resiliency tests on containers is incredibly important for the product. It’s not a stretch to say that Gremlin have probably been working on this feature for some time, with users placing it high on their list of must-haves.
Chaos engineering is still in its infancy – this year’s Skill Up report found that it still remains on the periphery of many developer’s awareness. However, that could quickly change, and it appears that Gremlin are working hard to make chaos engineering not only more accessible but also more appealing to companies for whom software resiliency is essential.