HomeDevelopment5 Options for Canary Releasing in Cloud-Native

5 Options for Canary Releasing in Cloud-Native


If you want to optimize your release process and minimize risk, you should consider using a canary release. A canary release is when you deploy a new version of your software to a small subset of users before releasing it to the public. By gradually exposing a new feature to a small subset of users, you can measure its impact and ensure that it works as expected before making it available.

The canary release technique is particularly well suited to cloud-native applications, which are designed to be highly scalable and resilient. Using canary releases can minimize the risk of disrupting your application and causing downtime for your users.

Read on to find more about 5 Options for Canary Releasing in Cloud-Native:

What is Canary Releasing in Cloud-Native

Canary releases can be used for both new features and bug fixes. For new features, a canary release can help determine if the feature is ready for general release. For bug fixes, canary releasing can help identify the fix that solves the problem. 

While canary release can be useful, it is not without risks. The most obvious risk is introducing new errors into the production environment. This risk can be mitigated by thoroughly testing code changes before deployment to canary users. If canary users are unhappy with the new code changes, they may provide negative feedback that could impact the rollout. This risk can be mitigated by carefully selecting canary users and monitoring feedback.

Canary Release Solutions

1. Flagger

Flagger is a popular open source tool for managing canary releases. It automates the process of promoting new versions of software from development to production, monitoring the canary’s health, and automatically rolling back if needed. Flagger consists of two main components: a controller and an analyzer. 

The controller runs in your Kubernetes cluster and manages the canary deployments. The analyzer runs outside of the cluster and uses machine learning to detect issues with the canary. Flagger can also route traffic to canaries based on advanced criteria such as user location or device type.

2. Argo Rollouts

One way to do canary releasing is with Argo Rollouts. Argo Rollout is a tool that can help you manage canary releases for your Kubernetes services. It allows you to define rollout policies and automatically roll out new versions of your services according to those policies. Argo Rollouts makes it easy to control the rollout of your canary releases. You can specify the percentage of users that should receive the new changes, and Argo Rollouts will automatically handle the rest.

3. Spinnaker

Spinnaker, an open-source tool backed by Netflix, Google, and Microsoft, offers several features that can make your life easier. One of the most valuable features of Spinnaker is its support for canary deployments. With canary deployments, you can gradually roll out changes to your users and monitor their impact in real-time. This can significantly reduce the risk of unexpected problems when you introduce changes to your software.

Another handy feature Spinnaker offers is its ability to clone and spin up new environments on demand. This can be a great way to save time when testing new changes. And if you need to roll back a change, Spinnaker can help you do that quickly and easily.

4. GitHub Actions

If you’re using GitHub for your development work, then you’re probably aware of the Actions feature. Actions allow you to automate various tasks, and one of the most popular use cases is for Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD).

One of the benefits of using Actions for CI/CD is that you can automatically deploy canary releases. A canary release is a technique where you first deploy a new version of your software to a small group of users to test for any potential issues. If everything goes well, you can deploy the new version to everyone.

Using GitHub Actions for canary releases is a great way to get early feedback on your changes and ensure that any new deployments are fine. Plus, it’s just one more thing that you can automate with Actions!

5. Optimizely

Optimizely is a tool that makes canary releases easy to manage. With its simple interface, you can quickly set up and monitor canaries for your applications. Additionally, Optimizely can automatically roll back canaries that don’t work, so you don’t have to worry about broken code getting pushed to your users. Optimizely allows you to experiment with different versions of your product and track how users interact with each version. This data can then be used to help you make decisions about which version of your product to roll out to all users. 


Canary releases are a great way to test new features or updates in a production environment without risking the entire system’s stability. But how do you choose the right canary release solution for your needs? There are a few different options, but they all essentially do the same thing. The first option is to use a tool like Argo Rollout or Flagger. Although GitHub Actions is also a popular choice if you prefer working with Git for your code. Another option is to use a tool like Spinnaker, an open-source tool. No matter what you choose, ensure that the tools fulfills your requirements. 

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