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Grafana vs Prometheus: What are the differences?
What is Grafana? Open source Graphite & InfluxDB Dashboard and Graph Editor. 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 Prometheus? An open-source service monitoring system and time series database, developed by SoundCloud. 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.
Grafana and Prometheus can be primarily classified as "Monitoring" tools.
Some of the features offered by Grafana are:
- Create, edit, save & search dashboards
- Change column spans and row heights
- Drag and drop panels to rearrange
On the other hand, Prometheus provides the following key features:
- a multi-dimensional data model (timeseries defined by metric name and set of key/value dimensions)
- a flexible query language to leverage this dimensionality
- no dependency on distributed storage
"Beautiful" is the top reason why over 65 developers like Grafana, while over 32 developers mention "Powerful easy to use monitoring" as the leading cause for choosing Prometheus.
Grafana and Prometheus are both open source tools. Grafana with 29.7K GitHub stars and 5.63K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than Prometheus with 25K GitHub stars and 3.55K GitHub forks.
Uber Technologies, 9GAG, and Harvest are some of the popular companies that use Grafana, whereas Prometheus is used by Uber Technologies, Soundcloud, and DigitalOcean. Grafana has a broader approval, being mentioned in 577 company stacks & 325 developers stacks; compared to Prometheus, which is listed in 243 company stacks and 85 developer stacks.
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.
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.
Hi, We have a situation, where we are using Prometheus to get system metrics from PCF (Pivotal Cloud Foundry) platform. We send that as time-series data to Cortex via a Prometheus server and built a dashboard using Grafana. There is another pipeline where we need to read metrics from a Linux server using Metricbeat, CPU, memory, and Disk. That will be sent to Elasticsearch and Grafana will pull and show the data in a dashboard.
Is it OK to use Metricbeat for Linux server or can we use Prometheus?
What is the difference in system metrics sent by Metricbeat and Prometheus node exporters?
If you're already using Prometheus for your system metrics, then it seems like standing up Elasticsearch just for Linux host monitoring is excessive. The node_exporter is probably sufficient if you'e looking for standard system metrics.
Another thing to consider is that Metricbeat / ELK use a push model for metrics delivery, whereas Prometheus pulls metrics from each node it is monitoring. Depending on how you manage your network security, opting for one solution over two may make things simpler.
Hi Sunil! Unfortunately, I don´t have much experience with Metricbeat so I can´t advise on the diffs with Prometheus...for Linux server, I encourage you to use Prometheus node exporter and for PCF, I would recommend using the instana tile (https://www.instana.com/supported-technologies/pivotal-cloud-foundry/). Let me know if you have further questions! Regards Jose
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.
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.
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/
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."
For our Predictive Analytics platform, we have used both Grafana and Kibana
- Grafana based demo video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdTB2AcU4Sg
- Kibana based reporting screenshot: https://imgur.com/vuVvZKN
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)
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
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 .
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.
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).
I use Grafana because it is without a doubt the best way to visualize metrics
@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.
Grafana and Prometheus together, running on Kubernetes , is a powerful combination. These tools are cloud-native and offer a large community and easy integrations. At PayIt we're using exporting Java application metrics using a Dropwizard metrics exporter, and our Node.js services now use the prom-client npm library to serve metrics.
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.
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.
Pros of Grafana
- Graphs are interactive68
- Nicer than the Graphite web interface34
- Many integrations25
- Can build dashboards18
- Can collaborate on dashboards10
- Easy to specify time window10
- Dashboards contain number tiles9
- Click and drag to zoom in5
- Integration with InfluxDB5
- Open Source5
- Authentification and users management4
- Threshold limits in graphs4
- Simple and native support to Prometheus3
- It is open to cloud watch and many database3
- You can visualize real time data to put alerts2
- You can use this for development to check memcache2
- Great community support2
- Plugin visualizationa0
- Grapsh as code0
Pros of Prometheus
- Powerful easy to use monitoring47
- Flexible query language38
- Dimensional data model32
- Active and responsive community23
- Extensive integrations22
- Easy to setup19
- Beautiful Model and Query language12
- Easy to extend7
- Written in Go3
- Good for experimentation2
- Easy for monitoring1
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Cons of Grafana
- No interactive query builder1
Cons of Prometheus
- Just for metrics12
- Bad UI6
- Needs monitoring to access metrics endpoints6
- Not easy to configure and use4
- Supports only active agents3
- Written in Go2
- TLS is quite difficult to understand2
- Requires multiple applications and tools2
- Single point of failure1
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