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Sunset plan for Virtual private minion (update to containerized private minion)



What’s happening:

Containerized private minions (CPM), which allows customers to install and upgrade private minions using containers, went GA in November, 2018. As a result, Engineering will continue to provide critical security updates for virtual private minions through August 9th 2019. After August 9th 2019:

  • Virtual Private Minions will no longer be updated
  • Virtual Private Minions will not be available to download
  • CPM will be available to be selected and assigned to monitors
  • Technical support will move to the Explorers Hub

Link to blogpost

Benefits of containerized private minions:

Customers wanted an easier to use interface when monitoring from any location and behind the firewall. As a result, we improved on our private minions, which utilized an appliance and VM, by now running the Synthetics application inside of a container.

With containerized private minions we’re giving more control to the customer, with all the benefits that come from containers. Synthetic users the following:

  • greater ease of use - set up, configure, deploy
  • more control - host provisioning under compliance
  • more secure - less patches to fix
  • more cloud friendly - easier to run in cloud environments vs. VM-based private minions

Legacy private minions utilized an appliance and virtual machine to run minions from any location and behind the firewall. Legacy private minions, while effective, were heavier (shipped with an appliance), time-intensive to install / configure / upgrade, often had to be massaged to run in cloud environments, and offered a host of other challenges and dependencies.

What’s required of Synthetics customers:

For customers using virtual appliance private minions

  • The Synthetics team will be providing critical security and product updates to the virtual appliance private minions through August 9th 2019. After August August 9th 2019, the virtual private minions will no longer be maintained (no further updates). Troubleshooting and questions for Legacy VM Private Minions will be available through the Explorers Hub. We recommend that customers begin the process of updating their minions to the CPM and hosting on Docker.

Making the change:

  • You don’t have to immediately switch your workloads to CPM. If you’re interested in gradually converting from legacy VM-based private minions to CPM, you can run both concurrently. Start deploying CPMs, and run them alongside your legacy private minions, and then retire the older ones as you get more comfortable with the containerized versions


  • While you will be able to use both CPM and Legacy Private Minions in your environment, technical support through the Support Portal will remain available for CPM only. After August 9th, 2019, troubleshooting and questions for Legacy VM Private Minions will be available through the Explorers Hub.

Hosting a container

  • Instead of managing the full operating system (required by the virtual appliance) we have provided an easier option. This requires you to run docker instead of a virtual environment and run the CPM on a container. You can learn more about Docker on their website:

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your Account Executive or Customer Success Manager.