A coal miner holding a cage with a canary inside
A miner staring admiringly at a canary

Creating an AWS CloudWatch Synthetics Canary using Serverless

SCaC: Synthetic Canary as Code

Kris Raven
CodeX
Published in
10 min readMar 2, 2024

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Mining is dangerous, especially in the 19th century. Poisonous gases deep underground were especially of concern. There were also no early warning systems or automated monitoring methods. So miners had to employ the help of a small, colourful bird. The canary. This bird would be an early warning sign to the miners. They could look at the canary and if it were having trouble breathing, then soon the miners would have trouble breathing…or worse. This practice is still often used today. Luckily, in most mines, mechanical canaries now perform the same job.

A wonderful example of real-life being replicated in Software Development has meant we now have synthetic canaries. These monitor an application and alert us of any problems it encounters. AWS CloudWatch offers a Synthetics service to create Canaries. This offers monitoring features, integration with the CloudWatch dashboards, and alarms and can be…

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Kris Raven
CodeX
Writer for

Quality Engineering Manager | A wholesome mix of QA, Automated Testing, music and philosophy | Enjoys unit tests | Favours integration tests