Canvas Beta Information

Canvas Beta Environment

What is the Canvas beta environment?

The beta environment is used to preview new or optional features of Canvas as well as conduct testing of services, resources, etc.

Why is this other version of Canvas called “beta”? When a new product, such as a software program or a service like Canvas, is created or upgraded, there are several stages in development before the manufacturer sells it commercially. The first stage is an “alpha” version, in which software testers within the company test and debug a program as necessary. A “beta” version is the name for the second stage, in which it is often released for free or at a reduced price to a group of external users for additional testing. Instructure also commonly uses these phases during development of new Canvas features to see how well they function for a large user base. The beta Canvas environment previews new features before they are included in a “release,” i.e., one of the monthly updates to Canvas.

So, in short, you would visit the Canvas beta environment to explore new features before Instructure adds them to our live production environment. The beta environment is overwritten with data from the production environment every Saturday evening. So it will look similar to our live production environment, with the same courses and people you’d see elsewhere, but it will not be identical. Any work or content you add to your beta environment will be overwritten every week.

More important points about the beta environment

  • When you log into the beta environment, there will be a large pink bar across the bottom of your screen reminding you that you are not in the live production environment, but are in a “test installation.”
  • Students shound NOT use the beta envioment.
  • Notifications, including course invitations and report downloads, cannot be sent in the beta environment.
  • Any changes you make in the beta environment will not be preserved, so it’s not a place to go to develop a course.

Canvas Beta Login Link


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