Chaos engineering is a trend that has been evolving quickly over the last 12 months. While for the decade it has largely been the preserve of Silicon Valley’s biggest companies, thanks to platforms and tools like Gremlin, and an increased focus on software resiliency, that’s been changing.
Today, however, is a particularly important step in chaos engineering, as Gremlin have partnered with Netflix-built continuous deployment platform Spinnaker to allow engineering teams to automate chaos engineering ‘experiments’ throughout their CI and CD pipelines.
Ultimately it means DevOps teams can think differently about chaos engineering. Gradually, this could help shift the way we think about chaos engineering, as it moves from localized experiments that require an in depth understanding of one’s infrastructure, to something that is built-into the development and deployment process.
More importantly, it makes it easier for engineering teams to take complete ownership of the reliability of their software. At a time when distributed systems bring more unpredictability into infrastructure, and when downtime has never been more costly (a Gartner report suggested downtime costs the average U.S. company $5,600 a minute all the way back in 2014) this is a step that could have a significant impact on how engineers work in the future.
Spinnaker and chaos engineering
Spinnaker is an open source continuous delivery platform built by Netflix and supported by Google, Microsoft, and Oracle. It’s a platform that has been specifically developed for highly distributed and hybrid systems. This makes it a great fit for Gremlin, and also highlights that the growth of chaos engineering is being driven by the move to cloud.
Adam Jordens, a Core Contributor to Spinnaker and a member of the Spinnaker Technical Oversight Committee said that “with the rise of microservices and distributed architectures, it’s more important than ever to understand how your cloud infrastructure behaves under stress.”
Jordens continued; “by integrating with Gremlin, companies will be able to automate chaos engineering into their continuous delivery platform for the continual hardening and resilience of their internet systems.”
Kolton Andrus, Gremlin CEO and Co-Founder explained the importance of Spinnaker in relation to chaos engineering, saying that “by integrating with Gremlin, users can now automate chaos experiments across multiple cloud providers including AWS EC2, Kubernetes, Google Compute Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine, Google App Engine, Microsoft Azure, Openstack, and more, enabling enterprises to build more resilient software.”
In recent months Gremlin has been working hard on products and features that make chaos engineering more accessible to companies and their engineering teams. In February, it released Gremlin Free, a free version of Gremlin designed to offer users a starting point for performing chaos experiments.