Browse Definitions:
Definition

canary (canary test, canary deployment)

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: ALM best practices for advanced DevOps organizations

In software testing, a canary is a push of programming code changes to a small group of end users who are unaware that they are receiving new code. Because the canary is only distributed to a small number of users, its impact is relatively small and changes can be reversed quickly should the new code prove to be buggy. Canary tests, which are often automated, are run after testing in a sandbox environment has been completed.

For incremental code changes, a canary approach to delivering functionality allows the development team to quickly evaluate whether or not the code release provides the desired outcome. The word canary was selected to describe the code push to a subset of users because canaries were once used in coal mining to alert miners when toxic gases reached dangerous levels. Like the canary in a coal mind, the end user who is selected to receive new code in a canary test is unaware he is being used to provide an early warning.

In canary testing, a small subset of traffic serves as a test for updates. If anything in the update causes problems, it alerts the IT team before a large group of users feel the effects. In canary testing, a small subset of end users serves as a test group for updates. If anything in the update causes problems, it alerts the IT team before a large group of users feel the effects.

This was last updated in November 2016

Continue Reading About canary (canary test, canary deployment)

Join the conversation

3 comments

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

I think there might be a typo here.
Users "not volunteering" seems like a seriously dubious business practice.
Cancel
There's a bit of confusion here.
Users' reaction and experience might be tested with this "canary code" but those users do not perform any testing.

Testing includes investigation, isolation, and reporting of the problem. "It sucks" is not very actionable report but one can't hope to get any better with this so called "canary testing".
Cancel
Does Amazon Web Services allow canary release?
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • internal audit (IA)

    An internal audit (IA) is an organizational initiative to monitor and analyze its own business operations in order to determine ...

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • phishing

    Phishing is a form of fraud in which an attacker masquerades as a reputable entity or person in email or other communication ...

  • vulnerability disclosure

    Vulnerability disclosure is the practice of publishing information about a computer security problem, and a type of policy that ...

  • incident response

    Incident response is an organized approach to addressing and managing the aftermath of a security breach or cyberattack, also ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

SearchStorage

  • flash memory

    Flash memory, also known as flash storage, is a type of nonvolatile memory that erases data in units called blocks.

  • NAND flash memory

    NAND flash memory is a type of nonvolatile storage technology that does not require power to retain data.

  • NOR flash memory

    NOR flash memory is one of two types of nonvolatile storage technologies.

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • hybrid hard disk drive (HDD)

    A hybrid hard disk drive is an electromechanical spinning hard disk that contains some amount of NAND Flash memory.

Close