Dead Man's Snitch


Announcing: Error Logs with Field Agent

Last year we introduced Field Agent, an important addition to your toolkit that gathers extra data on your critical tasks, packages it up, and radios it back to Dead Man's Snitch. Since then, we've been working on new ways to leverage the data that Field Agent collects to give you more insight into your Snitches and their failures.

Diagnosing why a job failed often involves jumping onto servers and parsing through logs to find out what happened. Starting today, we're making it easy to see the job's output to help get problems resolved faster with new error logs.

error logs for dead man's snitch

Error logs, a feature of Error Notices, are available right now to anyone using Field Agent and are on the Surveillance Van plan or higher. To get started you need to set up your job to be monitored by Field Agent. Our documentation is a great place to start. As always, if you have questions let us know.

For those of you who use integrations for alerts, don't worry. You'll be able to access error logs from Slack and PagerDuty, which will include a link right to the logs when available.

Slack error log

To start being alerted immediately when your job runs but errors, and access to the error log output, you may want to consider upgrading to the Surveillance Plan or higher.

Calling for Backup: Introducing Teams

We're excited to announce that Dead Man's Snitch is now easier to use with your entire team. Gone are the days of sharing a single login or using a shared mailing list for alerts. Now, everyone on your team can have their own login and personalized alert settings. Using Slack or PagerDuty and don't need emails? You can now opt out of email alerts as well.

We want Dead Man's Snitch to be a great fit for teams of any size. So all of our paid plans allow you to invite as many team members as you need, at no extra cost. All team members are able to monitor and manage Snitches, create new API keys, and add or develop their own integrations.

Ready to get started? Start inviting your team now.

Teams page on Dead Man's Snitch


Along with better support for teams, we're also introducing Cases, a new way to separate your Snitches by project or team. With Cases, you can organize Snitches from multiple projects, applications, or teams in a way that makes sense to you. There's also no need to log in and out to access the Cases. Each Case has its own set of team members and integrations, so alerting the right team members of any issues is easy.

Cases for Dead Man's Snitch

Need help moving Snitches around? Let us know and we can help move your Snitches between Cases.

Multiple API Keys

Dead Man’s Snitch now supports multiple API keys. The ability to enable or disable API access over a variety of services will give you more control, security, and granularity. If you are currently utilizing an API key through Dead Man’s Snitch, that key will continue to work without interruption. For more information on multiple API keys, visit our documentation.

Smart Alerts and Error Notices

Level up your Snitches with our two newest features: Smart Alerts and Error Notices. Both features are focused on letting you know as soon as possible that a critical job ran into problems. They also make it easier for you to get those issues fixed a lot sooner.

Together, Smart Alerts and Error Notices create a powerful combo. Error Notices let you know as soon as a job runs but errors, and Smart Alerts gives you a safety net when/if that job fails to run at all.

Smart Alerts

Smart Alerts empower your Snitches to let you know sooner when they go missing. Dead Man's Snitch will learn from your snitch's check-in behavior and adjust the expected check-in time as it learns more about when your snitch checks-in. This means no longer having to wait until the end of the day to find out your snitch failed to check-in 23 hours earlier.

Smart Alerts are available for weekly and monthly Snitches for all paid plans. Hourly and daily Snitches are supported on the Surveillance Van plan.

Error Notices

It's now possible (and highly recommended) to send your job's exit status along with your check-in rather than checking in only on success. If your job runs but errors, we will immediately notify you if something went wrong.

If you're already using the Dead Man's Snitch Field Agent, then there are no changes required and you can start getting Error Notices today.

If you're using an HTTP client (like Curl) to check-in, you can send the status as the "s" parameter in either the query or a form. We will treat an exit status of "0" as a success and anything else as a failure. When using Cron it's also important to always check-in whenever your job runs and not only on success. To do this replace "&&" with ";" and use "$?" to get the exit status of your command.

Example; curl$?

To get started with Error Notices you can read up on the documentation. This feature is available for users on the Surveillance Van plan.

Field Agent

Field Agent If you haven't already, you may want to add our Field Agent to your tool set. Error Notices is just the first of a host of features we have planned that take advantage of the Field Agent. Start using the Field Agent today so you’ll be ready when we roll those features out.

Introducing: Field Agent

Today we are introducing Field Agent, our new cross platform utility for monitoring your scripts and important jobs. Field Agent watches over your jobs, checks if they error, measures how long they take, and radios it all to Dead Man's Snitch.

We're not ready to take the wraps off of everything that the Field Agent is capable of just yet. We recommend you start using it today so you're able to take advantage of new features as they're released.

Field Agent is a stand alone binary that works on Windows, Linux, MacOS/OSX, FreeBSD, NetBSD, and Solaris. Having no dependencies means installation is easy and it will continue to work even as you upgrade your systems around it.

To get started, download Field Agent for your operating system. Unzip the binary, and then update your jobs to be run by the Field Agent.

If you're currently using curl you can switch to using the Field Agent by changing your existing call from this:

/path/to/ && curl

To this:

/path/to/dms SNITCHTOKEN /path/to/

If you have any questions please check out the documentation or get in touch.

Check-in via Amazon SNS Queues

You can now configure your Snitch's check-in URL to messages from Amazon SNS using an HTTPS subscription. It's now easier to check-in with Dead Man's Snitch when your RDS backups finish.

Happy Snitching!

iOS Update: More Snitch Details

Version 2.2.0 of the Dead Man's Snitch iOS app is now available for download. The latest version is aimed at making it much easier for you to see what exactly is going on with your job, just like you would if you logged into your dashboard at

When viewing snitches on your iOS device, you can now tap on an individual snitch to get a more detailed breakdown. You are now able to view recent history, tags, notes, and messages that were sent with a check-in. With these added details, if something does go wrong with a job, you'll be able to react faster.

In order to make the experience between the app and the website much more seamless, we've updated the icons as well. Another thing we did is fix a bug revolving around error handling. Previously, if there was a network or HTTP error, the app would hang on the loading screen and never display anything. With new error handling, you now know what exactly went wrong.

If you haven't updated to the newest version of Dead Man's Snitch for iOS yet, head on over to the App Store today.

Happy Snitching!

Introducing Webhook Integrations for Dead Man’s Snitch

Webhook Alerts

We have added a new integration for receiving alerts via HTTP POST, making it easier to incorporate Dead Man’s Snitch into your own tools and systems. Now you can build tools to better control how and when you get alerted beyond our support for Slack and PagerDuty.

Get started by reading up on our documentation before adding a new integration to your account. Webhooks are available for users on the Private Eye plan or higher. If you’re on the Lone Snitch or Little Birdy plan, head on over to Plans & Billing to upgrade today.

Snitcher (Ruby) 0.4.0 Released

The 0.4.0 release includes a new API client that makes integrating with the Dead Man’s Snitch API a lot easier. This release should make it easier to manage your Snitches with Chef or other custom tools.

Extensive documentation and examples can be found on GitHub.

If there’s anything else you would like to see us add for Dead Man’s Snitch in the future, drop us a line here.

Happy Snitching!

Easier Invoicing

We've made it easier to access your invoices and track your expenses. Now, when you receive your email confirming your payment, your invoice is attached right to the email.

As always, you can still find a list of all your invoices on your plan page.

Slack Slash Commands

Our Slack Integration just got some exciting enhancements! You can now use the /dms slash command to get information about your snitches right in your Slack channel. You can use it to get a list of your snitches, or check up on a single snitch.

Use /dms missing to get a list of all your snitches that missed their check in, or /dms status followed by a snitches name or token to see how that snitch is doing. /dms list will show you a list of all your snitches. Take control by tacking on a tag or a status to filter the list that is given.

Integrations are available for users on the Private Eye plan or higher. Head to Plans & Billing to upgrade, or your integrations page to get set up! You can read more about our Slack integrations to find out more.

New Year, New Looks

Snitch Activity

We’ve improved what you see when you’re looking at your snitches! When you check up on your snitch, you’ll see a report describing any recent incidents. With this, you will quickly be able to see if your snitch failed to check in at any point, how long it was missing, and if it still needs attention.

We also list your snitch’s check-in activity with all new graphics. It is now easy to see when during a period your snitch checked in. This visual can help you to find abnormalities in your job’s check in time, or just be reassured that everything is running as expected.

Icon Changes

Note, we changed the icon for when a snitch misses a check-in (in preparation for some future developments). You will now be alerted with a blue questionmark icon instead of the red 'X'.

Happy Snitching!

Android Update: Snitches Tell You More

With the latest version of Dead Man's Snitch for Android, we have taken a big step toward giving you the information you need to react quickly and appropriately when the unexpected occurs. Our Android development team has been hard at work so you can get more information about your snitches at a glance.

Snitch Details and Check-in History

In addition to seeing the current state of your snitches, you can now dig deeper to see more information about what is going on within the app. Now you can see your notes about the job and how to fix it if something goes wrong. You can also see the history of your check-in periods and any messages that were sent when it completed or failed.

React Quickly with Enhanced Notifications

We have enhanced our notifications to make it clearer which snitches are acting up and what they are doing. Each snitch now has its own notification stream showing you a timeline of the latest activity right from your lock screen.

Swipe to dismiss the notifications, or click them to open the app directly to the detail screen. Use your notes to let you and your team know about job priority and provide debugging guidelines. Send messages when your jobs succeed or fail so you can react quickly to the problem at hand.

Just as before, you will get push notifications to the app provided you have an upgraded plan. You can also pause any failing snitches to stop those notifications while you investigate the problem, or just decide to wait and see what happens. Either way, we'll still notify you when everything starts working again.

Go download the app to your Android device and start getting informed!