Fueling innovative software
July 15-18, 2019
Portland, OR

Chaos debugging: Finding and fixing microservice abnormalities

Mitchell Kelley (Solo.io), Scott Cranton (Solo.io)
11:50am12:30pm Thursday, July 18, 2019
Average rating: ****.
(4.07, 15 ratings)

Who is this presentation for?

  • Developers and architects




Building microservices applications introduces more complexity into your architecture. Highly distributed applications on elastic, ephemeral infrastructure that communicate heavily over the network make for an environment where an application is always in a fluid, partially failing state at all times. To help developers transition from the monolithic way of designing and building software to a more service-oriented approach, we need to bridge the gap in tooling to help diagnose and understand what a normal state looks like and how to recover from a non-normal state.

Mitchell Kelley and Scott Cranton discuss the types of failures that can occur, namely networking, application behavior/code, and storage, and present a systemic workflow for prodding and exploring a system to detect faults and abnormal behavior. This framework builds on the practices known as chaos engineering. Mitchell and Scott take a look at two open source projects that aim to complement this workflow: the Squash project, for step-by-step distributed microservices debugging, and Gloo Shot, a newly created chaos engineering framework.

Prerequisite knowledge

  • Familiarity with debugging applications and building distributed applications
  • A basic understanding of services-oriented applications

What you'll learn

  • Understand chaos engineering
  • Learn how to debug distributed applications with appropriate tooling
  • Investigate the requisite workflow to apply toward system behavior exploration
Photo of Mitchell Kelley

Mitchell Kelley


Mitch Kelley is a software engineer at Solo.io, where he works to make developers more productive and cloud infrastructure more performant and secure. Mitch is the maintainer of Solo.io’s open source microservice debugger, Squash. In a previous job at an enterprise cloud software company, he came to appreciate the great potential of cloud software and the great need for better tools and workflows. In a previous career as a mechanical engineer, he established a high standard for observability and stress testing. He’s a big fan of open source software and is excited to extend human capability through better technology.

Photo of Scott Cranton

Scott Cranton


Scott Cranton is the director of customer success at Solo.io, focusing on helping our users and customers quickly adopt and smoothly operate API gateways and service mesh-related technologies. Previously, he held a variety of product development, sales engineering, and management roles at Red Hat, FuseSource, Oracle, and BEA. Scott is the author of the Apache Camel Developer’s Cookbook; a contributor to many open source projects; and a writer and speaker on many technical topics.