Grafana vs Kibana vs Zabbix

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Grafana

17.5K
14K
+ 1
415
Kibana

20.2K
16K
+ 1
262
Zabbix

670
970
+ 1
66

Grafana vs Kibana vs Zabbix: What are the differences?

Introduction

Grafana, Kibana, and Zabbix are widely used open-source monitoring and visualization platforms. While they serve similar purposes, there are key differences between them that make each suitable for different use cases.

  1. Data Sources: Grafana provides support for a wide range of data sources including databases, messaging systems, and cloud platforms. Kibana, on the other hand, is tightly integrated with Elasticsearch and primarily focuses on analyzing logs and metrics stored in Elasticsearch. Zabbix supports multiple data sources such as SNMP, JMX, and IPMI, making it versatile for monitoring various systems.

  2. Visualization Capabilities: Grafana is renowned for its extensive and customizable visualization options. It offers a user-friendly drag-and-drop interface, allowing users to create dynamic dashboards with interactive graphs, charts, and tables. Kibana also provides visualization features, but it is more focused on log-based analysis, providing features like histograms and heat maps. Zabbix offers basic visualization capabilities but lacks the customization and interactive features of Grafana.

  3. Alerting and Notification: Grafana enables users to set up alerts based on specified conditions and receive notifications via various channels such as email, Slack, or PagerDuty. Kibana lacks built-in alerting capabilities, but it can be integrated with external systems for this purpose. Zabbix, on the other hand, has comprehensive built-in alerting capabilities, allowing users to define complex triggers and actions for alert notifications.

  4. User Interface: Grafana boasts a modern and intuitive user interface, making it easy for users to navigate and interact with their dashboards. Kibana also offers a user-friendly interface with powerful search capabilities, tailored for exploring and analyzing data in Elasticsearch. Zabbix has a more traditional and less aesthetically pleasing interface, which may require some getting used to for new users.

  5. Community and Ecosystem: Grafana has a large and active community, with extensive online resources and a marketplace to extend its functionality. Kibana also benefits from the Elasticsearch community and ecosystem, allowing for seamless integration with other Elastic Stack components. Zabbix has a dedicated user community but may have a smaller pool of available resources and integrations compared to Grafana and Kibana.

  6. Ease of Setup and Configuration: Grafana is known for its straightforward setup process and ease of configuration. It provides an intuitive web-based interface for setting up data sources, dashboards, and alerts. Kibana also offers a relatively easy setup, especially when used in combination with Elasticsearch. Zabbix, on the other hand, can be more complex to set up and configure, especially for users with limited systems administration knowledge.

In summary, Grafana excels in its wide range of data source support and powerful visualization capabilities, while Kibana is specifically designed for Elasticsearch log and metric analysis. Zabbix stands out in its comprehensive built-in alerting features and versatility in monitoring various systems. Choose Grafana for versatile and dynamic visualization, Kibana for Elasticsearch-centric analysis, and Zabbix for robust monitoring and alerting capabilities.

Advice on Grafana, Kibana, and Zabbix
Susmita Meher
Senior SRE at African Bank · | 4 upvotes · 791.2K views
Needs advice
on
GrafanaGrafanaGraphiteGraphite
and
PrometheusPrometheus

Looking for a tool which can be used for mainly dashboard purposes, but here are the main requirements:

  • Must be able to get custom data from AS400,
  • Able to display automation test results,
  • System monitoring / Nginx API,
  • Able to get data from 3rd parties DB.

Grafana is almost solving all the problems, except AS400 and no database to get automation test results.

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Replies (1)
Sakti Behera
Technical Specialist, Software Engineering at AT&T · | 3 upvotes · 576.5K views
Recommends
on
GrafanaGrafanaPrometheusPrometheus

You can look out for Prometheus Instrumentation (https://prometheus.io/docs/practices/instrumentation/) Client Library available in various languages https://prometheus.io/docs/instrumenting/clientlibs/ to create the custom metric you need for AS4000 and then Grafana can query the newly instrumented metric to show on the dashboard.

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Needs advice
on
CentreonCentreon
and
ZabbixZabbix

My team is divided on using Centreon or Zabbix for enterprise monitoring and alert automation. Can someone let us know which one is better? There is one more tool called Datadog that we are using for cloud assets. Of course, Datadog presents us with huge bills. So we want to have a comparative study. Suggestions and advice are welcome. Thanks!

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Replies (4)
Geoffrey Timmerman
Systems Engineer at Simac · | 6 upvotes · 284.8K views
Recommends
on
ZabbixZabbix
at

I work at Volvo Car Corporation as a consultant Project Manager. We have deployed Zabbix in all of our factories for factory monitoring because after thorough investigation we saw that Zabbix supports the wide variety of Operating Systems, hardware peripherals and devices a Car Manufacturer has.

No other tool had the same amount of support onboard for our production environment and we didn't want to end up using a different tool again for several areas. That is the major strong point about Zabbix and it's free of course. Another strong point is the documentation which is widely available; Zabbix Youtube channel with tutorial video's, Zabbix share which holds free templates, the Zabbix online documentation and the Zabbix forum also helped us out quite a bit. Deployment is quite easy since it uses templates, so almost all configuration can be done on server side.

To conclude, we are really pleased with the tool so far, it helped us detect several causes of issues that were a pain to solve in the past.

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Recommends
on
CentreonCentreon

Centreon is part of the Nagios ecosystem, meaning there is a huge number of resources you may find around in the community (plugins, skills, addons). Zabbix monitoring paradigms are totally different from Centreon. Centreon plugins have some kind of intelligence when they are launched, where Zabbix monitoring rules are configured centrally with the raw data collected. Testing both will help you understand :) Users used to say Centreon may be faster for setup and deployment. And in the end, both are full of monitoring features. Centreon has out of the box a full catalog of probes from cloud to the edge https://www.centreon.com/en/plugins-pack-list/ As soon as you have defined your monitoring policies and template, you can deploy it fast through command line API or REST API. Centreon plays well in the ITSM, Automation, AIOps spaces with many connectors for Prometheus, ServiceNow, GLPI, Ansible, Chef, Splunk, ... The polling server mode is one of the differentiators with Centreon. You set up remote server(s) and chose btw multiple information-exchange mechanisms. Powerful and resilient for remote, VPN, DMZ, satellite networks. Centreon is a good value for price to do a data collection (availability, performance, fault) on a wide range of technologies (physical, legacy, cloud). There are pro support and enterprise version with dashboards and reporting. IT Central Station gathers many user feedback you can rely on both Centreon & Zabbix https://www.itcentralstation.com/products/centreon-reviews  

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muutech
at Muutech Monitoring Solutions, S.L. · | 3 upvotes · 282.4K views
Recommends
on
ZabbixZabbix

We highly recommend Zabbix. We have used it to build our own monitoring product (available on cloud -like datadog- or on premise with support) because of its flexibility and extendability. It can be easily integrated with the powerful dashboarding and data aggregation of Grafana, so it is perfect. All configuration is done via web and templates, so it scales well and can be distributed via proxies. I think there also more companies providing consultancy in Zabbix (like ours) than Centreon and community is much wider. Also Zabbix roadmap and focus (compatibility with Elasticsearch, Prometheus, TimescaleDB) is really really good.

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Recommends
on
KamonKamon
at

Hi Vivek, what's your stack? If huge monitoring bills are your concern and if you’re using a number of JVM languages, or mostly Scala / Akka, and would like “one tool to monitor them all”, Kamon might be the friendliest choice to go for.

Kamon APM’s major benefit is it comes with a built-in dashboard for the most important metrics to monitor, taking the pain of figuring out what to monitor and building your own dashboards for weeks out of the monitoring.

https://kamon.io/apm/

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Mat Jovanovic
Head of Cloud at Mats Cloud · | 3 upvotes · 720.2K views
Needs advice
on
DatadogDatadogGrafanaGrafana
and
PrometheusPrometheus

We're looking for a Monitoring and Logging tool. It has to support AWS (mostly 100% serverless, Lambdas, SNS, SQS, API GW, CloudFront, Autora, etc.), as well as Azure and GCP (for now mostly used as pure IaaS, with a lot of cognitive services, and mostly managed DB). Hopefully, something not as expensive as Datadog or New relic, as our SRE team could support the tool inhouse. At the moment, we primarily use CloudWatch for AWS and Pandora for most on-prem.

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Replies (2)
Lucas Rincon
Recommends
on
InstanaInstana

this is quite affordable and provides what you seem to be looking for. you can see a whole thing about the APM space here https://www.apmexperts.com/observability/ranking-the-observability-offerings/

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Recommends
on
DatadogDatadog

I worked with Datadog at least one year and my position is that commercial tools like Datadog are the best option to consolidate and analyze your metrics. Obviously, if you can't pay the tool, the best free options are the mix of Prometheus with their Alert Manager and Grafana to visualize (that are complementary not substitutable). But I think that no use a good tool it's finally more expensive that use a not really good implementation of free tools and you will pay also to maintain its.

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Needs advice
on
GrafanaGrafana
and
KibanaKibana

From a StackShare Community member: “We need better analytics & insights into our Elasticsearch cluster. Grafana, which ships with advanced support for Elasticsearch, looks great but isn’t officially supported/endorsed by Elastic. Kibana, on the other hand, is made and supported by Elastic. I’m wondering what people suggest in this situation."

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Replies (7)
Recommends
on
GrafanaGrafana
at

For our Predictive Analytics platform, we have used both Grafana and Kibana

Kibana has predictions and ML algorithms support, so if you need them, you may be better off with Kibana . The multi-variate analysis features it provide are very unique (not available in Grafana).

For everything else, definitely Grafana . Especially the number of supported data sources, and plugins clearly makes Grafana a winner (in just visualization and reporting sense). Creating your own plugin is also very easy. The top pros of Grafana (which it does better than Kibana ) are:

  • Creating and organizing visualization panels
  • Templating the panels on dashboards for repetetive tasks
  • Realtime monitoring, filtering of charts based on conditions and variables
  • Export / Import in JSON format (that allows you to version and save your dashboard as part of git)
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Recommends
on
KibanaKibana

I use both Kibana and Grafana on my workplace: Kibana for logging and Grafana for monitoring. Since you already work with Elasticsearch, I think Kibana is the safest choice in terms of ease of use and variety of messages it can manage, while Grafana has still (in my opinion) a strong link to metrics

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Bram Verdonck
Recommends
on
GrafanaGrafana
at

After looking for a way to monitor or at least get a better overview of our infrastructure, we found out that Grafana (which I previously only used in ELK stacks) has a plugin available to fully integrate with Amazon CloudWatch . Which makes it way better for our use-case than the offer of the different competitors (most of them are even paid). There is also a CloudFlare plugin available, the platform we use to serve our DNS requests. Although we are a big fan of https://smashing.github.io/ (previously dashing), for now we are starting with Grafana .

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Recommends
on
KibanaKibana

I use Kibana because it ships with the ELK stack. I don't find it as powerful as Splunk however it is light years above grepping through log files. We previously used Grafana but found it to be annoying to maintain a separate tool outside of the ELK stack. We were able to get everything we needed from Kibana.

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Recommends
on
KibanaKibana

Kibana should be sufficient in this architecture for decent analytics, if stronger metrics is needed then combine with Grafana. Datadog also offers nice overview but there's no need for it in this case unless you need more monitoring and alerting (and more technicalities).

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Recommends
on
GrafanaGrafana

I use Grafana because it is without a doubt the best way to visualize metrics

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Povilas Brilius
PHP Web Developer at GroundIn Software · | 0 upvotes · 599.3K views
Recommends
on
KibanaKibana
at

@Kibana, of course, because @Grafana looks like amateur sort of solution, crammed with query builder grouping aggregates, but in essence, as recommended by CERN - KIbana is the corporate (startup vectored) decision.

Furthermore, @Kibana comes with complexity adhering ELK stack, whereas @InfluxDB + @Grafana & co. recently have become sophisticated development conglomerate instead of advancing towards a understandable installation step by step inheritance.

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Decisions about Grafana, Kibana, and Zabbix
Leonardo Henrique da Paixão
Junior QA Tester at SolarMarket · | 2 upvotes · 177.2K views

I learned a lot from Grafana, especially the issue of data monitoring, as it is easy to use, I learned how to create quick and simple dashboards. InfluxDB, I didn't know any other types of DBMS, I only knew about relational DBMS or not, but the difference was the scalability of both, but with influxDB, I knew how a time series DBMS works and finally, Telegraf, which is from the same company as InfluxDB, as I used the Windows Operating System, Telegraf tools was the first in the industry, in addition, it has complete documentation, facilitating its use, I learned a lot about connections, without having to make scripts to collect the data.

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Leonardo Henrique da Paixão
Junior QA Tester at SolarMarket · | 15 upvotes · 358.1K views

The objective of this work was to develop a system to monitor the materials of a production line using IoT technology. Currently, the process of monitoring and replacing parts depends on manual services. For this, load cells, microcontroller, Broker MQTT, Telegraf, InfluxDB, and Grafana were used. It was implemented in a workflow that had the function of collecting sensor data, storing it in a database, and visualizing it in the form of weight and quantity. With these developed solutions, he hopes to contribute to the logistics area, in the replacement and control of materials.

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Pros of Grafana
Pros of Kibana
Pros of Zabbix
  • 89
    Beautiful
  • 68
    Graphs are interactive
  • 57
    Free
  • 56
    Easy
  • 34
    Nicer than the Graphite web interface
  • 26
    Many integrations
  • 18
    Can build dashboards
  • 10
    Easy to specify time window
  • 10
    Can collaborate on dashboards
  • 9
    Dashboards contain number tiles
  • 5
    Open Source
  • 5
    Integration with InfluxDB
  • 5
    Click and drag to zoom in
  • 4
    Authentification and users management
  • 4
    Threshold limits in graphs
  • 3
    Alerts
  • 3
    It is open to cloud watch and many database
  • 3
    Simple and native support to Prometheus
  • 2
    Great community support
  • 2
    You can use this for development to check memcache
  • 2
    You can visualize real time data to put alerts
  • 0
    Grapsh as code
  • 0
    Plugin visualizationa
  • 88
    Easy to setup
  • 65
    Free
  • 45
    Can search text
  • 21
    Has pie chart
  • 13
    X-axis is not restricted to timestamp
  • 9
    Easy queries and is a good way to view logs
  • 6
    Supports Plugins
  • 4
    Dev Tools
  • 3
    More "user-friendly"
  • 3
    Can build dashboards
  • 2
    Out-of-Box Dashboards/Analytics for Metrics/Heartbeat
  • 2
    Easy to drill-down
  • 1
    Up and running
  • 21
    Free
  • 9
    Alerts
  • 5
    Service/node/network discovery
  • 5
    Templates
  • 4
    Base metrics from the box
  • 3
    Multi-dashboards
  • 3
    SMS/Email/Messenger alerts
  • 2
    Grafana plugin available
  • 2
    Supports Graphs ans screens
  • 2
    Support proxies (for monitoring remote branches)
  • 1
    Perform website checking (response time, loading, ...)
  • 1
    API available for creating own apps
  • 1
    Templates free available (Zabbix Share)
  • 1
    Works with multiple databases
  • 1
    Advanced integrations
  • 1
    Supports multiple protocols/agents
  • 1
    Complete Logs Report
  • 1
    Open source
  • 1
    Supports large variety of Operating Systems
  • 1
    Supports JMX (Java, Tomcat, Jboss, ...)

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Cons of Grafana
Cons of Kibana
Cons of Zabbix
  • 1
    No interactive query builder
  • 6
    Unintuituve
  • 4
    Elasticsearch is huge
  • 3
    Hardweight UI
  • 3
    Works on top of elastic only
  • 5
    The UI is in PHP
  • 2
    Puppet module is sluggish

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What is Grafana?

Grafana is a general purpose dashboard and graph composer. It's focused on providing rich ways to visualize time series metrics, mainly though graphs but supports other ways to visualize data through a pluggable panel architecture. It currently has rich support for for Graphite, InfluxDB and OpenTSDB. But supports other data sources via plugins.

What is Kibana?

Kibana is an open source (Apache Licensed), browser based analytics and search dashboard for Elasticsearch. Kibana is a snap to setup and start using. Kibana strives to be easy to get started with, while also being flexible and powerful, just like Elasticsearch.

What is Zabbix?

Zabbix is a mature and effortless enterprise-class open source monitoring solution for network monitoring and application monitoring of millions of metrics.

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What are some alternatives to Grafana, Kibana, and Zabbix?
Datadog
Datadog is the leading service for cloud-scale monitoring. It is used by IT, operations, and development teams who build and operate applications that run on dynamic or hybrid cloud infrastructure. Start monitoring in minutes with Datadog!
Prometheus
Prometheus is a systems and service monitoring system. It collects metrics from configured targets at given intervals, evaluates rule expressions, displays the results, and can trigger alerts if some condition is observed to be true.
Graphite
Graphite does two things: 1) Store numeric time-series data and 2) Render graphs of this data on demand
Splunk
It provides the leading platform for Operational Intelligence. Customers use it to search, monitor, analyze and visualize machine data.
Netdata
Netdata collects metrics per second & presents them in low-latency dashboards. It's designed to run on all of your physical & virtual servers, cloud deployments, Kubernetes clusters & edge/IoT devices, to monitor systems, containers & apps
See all alternatives