Inspeqtor vs Skylight: What are the differences?
Developers describe Inspeqtor as "Easy application infrastructure monitoring". Inspeqtor monitors your application infrastructure. It gathers and verifies key metrics from all the moving parts in your application and alerts you when something looks wrong. It understands the application deployment workflow so it won't bother you during a deploy. On the other hand, Skylight is detailed as "The smart profiler for your Rails apps". Skylight is a smart profiler for your Rails apps that visualizes request performance across all of your servers.
Inspeqtor and Skylight belong to "Performance Monitoring" category of the tech stack.
Some of the features offered by Inspeqtor are:
- Monitor init.d-, systemd-, upstart-, runit- or launchd-managed services
- Monitor process memory and CPU usage
- Monitor daemon-specific metrics (e.g. redis, memcached, mysql, nginx...)
On the other hand, Skylight provides the following key features:
- Skylight looks at how your code is behaving in production, alerting you to improvements you can make before they become showstoppers.
- Skylight tells you exactly how your app is spending its time where it matters most—in your production environment
- Pricing starts at $20 for the first million requests, with automatic discounts for high-volume customers
Inspeqtor is an open source tool with 1.63K GitHub stars and 73 GitHub forks. Here's a link to Inspeqtor's open source repository on GitHub.
What is Inspeqtor?
What is Skylight?
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What tools integrate with Inspeqtor?
What tools integrate with Skylight?
If you follow the registration flow you end up with running analytics virtually in a minute. Awesome first experience.
I don't have my application in production so I needed to enable skylight in development, but Skylight navigated me nicely to the exact paragraph of a documentation, which helped.
When we were facing performance issues with the new StackShare app. We originally thought it was a server issue. So we did quite a bit of research to see how many dynos we should be using for the sort of application we have and traffic profile. We couldn’t find anything useful online so I ended up asking my buddy Alain over at BlockScore. After a quick convo with him, I knew we should be totally fine with just 2 dynos.
We also tested the theory by increasing the number of dynos and running the load tests. They had little to no effect on error rate, so this also confirmed that it wasn’t a server issue.
So that meant it was an application issue. New Relic wasn’t any help. I spoke with another friend who suggested we use a profiler. We totally should have been using one all along. We added mini-profiler, which was great for identifying slow queries and overall page load times. We also had the Rails Chrome extension so we could see how long view rendering was taking. So we cleaned up the slowest queries.
We tried to use mini-profiler in production on the new StackShare app and for some reason, we couldn’t get it to work. We were in a time crunch so I asked Alain what they used and he said that they use Skylight in production. Funny enough, I remembered the name Skylight because we listed it on the site a while back. So we did that, and at first we couldn’t really see how it was useful. Then we realized what we were seeing were a ton of repeat queries on some of the pages we load tested.
Skylight is cool because it sort of gives you the full MVC profile. We were able to pinpoint specific db queries that being repeated. So we cleaned those up pretty quickly. But then we noticed the views were taking up all the load time, so we start implementing caching more aggressively. After we cleaned up the db queries and added more caching, our pages went from this: to this:
Skylight ended up being super useful. We use it in production now.