Introduction to Chaos Engineering

…because systems fails in unpredictable ways.

Alex

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Image generated  with AI
Chaos Engineering, image generated with AI

Chaos engineering is a testing method used to build resilience and reliability in complex software systems. The core principle behind chaos engineering is that complex, modern software systems fail in unpredictable ways. By proactively and intentionally injecting faults like terminating servers or inducing latency, chaos engineering helps uncover vulnerabilities before they lead to outages.

The general approach is to hypothesize potential failure points, design controlled experiments to test those failure points, run the experiments in production, and use the results to improve the system. These experiments reveal weaknesses and allow engineers to address them, increasing the system’s resilience against turbulent conditions it may face.

Chaos engineering injects real-world failure scenarios into the system, complementing other testing methods focused on individual services and components. The insights gained give companies confidence that their systems will perform and recover as expected during inevitable failures. Overall, chaos engineering is the practice of proactively inducing controlled chaos in complex systems to build resilience.

Goals and Benefits of Chaos Engineering

Chaos engineering has several key goals and benefits for complex, distributed IT systems:

Build Resilience by Proactively Causing Failures

One of the main goals of chaos engineering is to proactively induce failures like servers crashing or networks slowing down. By intentionally creating turbulent conditions and causing outages, system vulnerabilities can be identified. This allows weaknesses to be addressed before they create problems in production environments. Essentially, chaos engineering stress tests systems to build confidence that they can withstand random faults or unplanned events.

Identify Weaknesses Before They Lead to Outages

By proactively injecting faults like latency, disk space errors, or CPU load, chaos engineering reveals vulnerabilities that could lead to outages if encountered in the real world. Weaknesses…

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Alex

DevOps Lead @evinova, former Dynatrace Solutions Engineer. Cheerleader in Chief for KMMX, Technical Writer & International Speaker, Dad & 2 cats.