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New Relic vs Stackdriver: What are the differences?

Introduction: New Relic and Stackdriver are two popular cloud-based monitoring services used to track the performance and health of applications and infrastructure. While both tools offer similar functionality, there are several key differences between them that are worth noting.

  1. Pricing Model: New Relic offers a tiered pricing model based on the number of compute units, allowing users to select the level of monitoring they require. On the other hand, Stackdriver offers a pay-as-you-go pricing model based on the volume of data ingested and stored, providing flexibility for users with varying monitoring needs.

  2. Integration Ecosystem: New Relic has a wider range of integrations available, including popular tools like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Stackdriver, however, has a advantage in terms of its deep integration with GCP services, providing detailed monitoring and diagnostics specifically tailored for GCP environments.

  3. Alerting Capabilities: New Relic offers advanced alerting capabilities, allowing users to set up complex alert conditions and trigger notifications via various channels, such as email, SMS, and chat tools. Stackdriver also provides robust alerting features, but its integration with other Google tools (such as PagerDuty and Slack) makes it more seamless for users already leveraging Google's ecosystem.

  4. Visualization and Dashboards: New Relic provides a highly customizable and interactive dashboard, allowing users to create visually appealing graphics and charts. It offers a drag-and-drop functionality to build personalized dashboards. In contrast, Stackdriver offers out-of-the-box dashboards with pre-built widgets and templates, which make it easier for users to quickly set up and visualize their monitoring data.

  5. Log Management: New Relic focuses primarily on application performance monitoring (APM) and infrastructure monitoring, but it also provides basic log management functionality. Stackdriver, on the other hand, offers more robust log management capabilities, allowing users to collect, analyze, and search log data in real-time, making it more suitable for users with extensive logging requirements.

  6. Analytics and Machine Learning: Stackdriver leverages Google Cloud's powerful analytics and machine learning capabilities, enabling users to gain insights and detect anomalies in their monitoring data using advanced algorithms. New Relic offers some level of anomaly detection, but it does not have the same level of machine learning capabilities as Stackdriver.

In summary, key differences between New Relic and Stackdriver include their pricing models, integration ecosystems, alerting capabilities, visualization and dashboard features, log management functionality, and analytics and machine learning capabilities.

Advice on New Relic and Stackdriver
Needs advice
on
DatadogDatadogNew RelicNew Relic
and
SysdigSysdig

We are looking for a centralised monitoring solution for our application deployed on Amazon EKS. We would like to monitor using metrics from Kubernetes, AWS services (NeptuneDB, AWS Elastic Load Balancing (ELB), Amazon EBS, Amazon S3, etc) and application microservice's custom metrics.

We are expected to use around 80 microservices (not replicas). I think a total of 200-250 microservices will be there in the system with 10-12 slave nodes.

We tried Prometheus but it looks like maintenance is a big issue. We need to manage scaling, maintaining the storage, and dealing with multiple exporters and Grafana. I felt this itself needs few dedicated resources (at least 2-3 people) to manage. Not sure if I am thinking in the correct direction. Please confirm.

You mentioned Datadog and Sysdig charges per host. Does it charge per slave node?

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Replies (3)
Recommends
on
DatadogDatadog

Can't say anything to Sysdig. I clearly prefer Datadog as

  • they provide plenty of easy to "switch-on" plugins for various technologies (incl. most of AWS)
  • easy to code (python) agent plugins / api for own metrics
  • brillant dashboarding / alarms with many customization options
  • pricing is OK, there are cheaper options for specific use cases but if you want superior dashboarding / alarms I haven't seen a good competitor (despite your own Prometheus / Grafana / Kibana dog food)

IMHO NewRelic is "promising since years" ;) good ideas but bad integration between their products. Their Dashboard query language is really nice but lacks critical functions like multiple data sets or advanced calculations. Needless to say you get all of that with Datadog.

Need help setting up a monitoring / logging / alarm infrastructure? Send me a message!

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Maik Schröder
Recommends
on
InstanaInstana

Hi Medeti,

you are right. Building based on your stack something with open source is heavy lifting. A lot of people I know start with such a set-up, but quickly run into frustration as they need to dedicated their best people to build a monitoring which is doing the job in a professional way.

As you are microservice focussed and are looking for 'low implementation and maintenance effort', you might want to have a look at INSTANA, which was built with modern tool stacks in mind. https://www.instana.com/apm-for-microservices/

We have a public sand-box available if you just want to have a look at the product once and of course also a free-trial: https://www.instana.com/getting-started-with-apm/

Let me know if you need anything on top.

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Attila Fulop
Management Advisor at artkonekt · | 2 upvotes · 304.2K views

I have hands on production experience both with New Relic and Datadog. I personally prefer Datadog over NewRelic because of the UI, the Documentation and the overall user/developer experience.

NewRelic however, can do basically the same things as Datadog can, and some of the features like alerting have been present in NewRelic for longer than in Datadog. The cool thing about NewRelic is their last-summer-updated pricing: you no longer pay per host but after data you send towards New Relic. This can be a huge cost saver depending on your particular setup

https://docs.newrelic.com/docs/accounts/accounts-billing/new-relic-one-pricing-billing/new-relic-one-pricing-billing

I'd go for Datadog, but given you have lots of containers I would also make a cost calculation. If the price difference is significant and there's a budget constraint NewRelic might be the better choice.

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Decisions about New Relic and Stackdriver
Attila Fulop

I haven't heard much about Datadog until about a year ago. Ironically, the NewRelic sales person who I had a series of trainings with was trash talking about Datadog a lot. That drew my attention to Datadog and I gave it a try at another client project where we needed log handling, dashboards and alerting.

In 2019, Datadog was already offering log management and from that perspective, it was ahead of NewRelic. Other than that, from my perspective, the two tools are offering a very-very similar set of tools. Therefore I wouldn't say there's a significant difference between the two, the decision is likely a matter of taste. The pricing is also very similar.

The reasons why we chose Datadog over NewRelic were:

  • The presence of log handling feature (since then, logging is GA at NewRelic as well since falls 2019).
  • The setup was easier even though I already had experience with NewRelic, including participation in NewRelic trainings.
  • The UI of Datadog is more compact and my experience is smoother.
  • The NewRelic UI is very fragmented and New Relic One is just increasing this experience for me.
  • The log feature of Datadog is very well designed, I find very useful the tagging logs with services. The log filtering is also very awesome.

Bottom line is that both tools are great and it makes sense to discover both and making the decision based on your use case. In our case, Datadog was the clear winner due to its UI, ease of setup and the awesome logging and alerting features.

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Benoit Larroque
Principal Engineer at Sqreen · | 4 upvotes · 402.4K views

I chose Datadog APM because the much better APM insights it provides (flamegraph, percentiles by default).

The drawbacks of this decision are we had to move our production monitoring to TimescaleDB + Telegraf instead of NR Insight

NewRelic is definitely easier when starting out. Agent is only a lib and doesn't require a daemon

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Pros of New Relic
Pros of Stackdriver
  • 415
    Easy setup
  • 344
    Really powerful
  • 244
    Awesome visualization
  • 194
    Ease of use
  • 151
    Great ui
  • 107
    Free tier
  • 80
    Great tool for insights
  • 66
    Heroku Integration
  • 55
    Market leader
  • 49
    Peace of mind
  • 21
    Push notifications
  • 20
    Email notifications
  • 17
    Heroku Add-on
  • 16
    Error Detection and Alerting
  • 13
    Multiple language support
  • 11
    Server Resources Monitoring
  • 11
    SQL Analysis
  • 9
    Transaction Tracing
  • 8
    Azure Add-on
  • 8
    Apdex Scores
  • 7
    Detailed reports
  • 7
    Analysis of CPU, Disk, Memory, and Network
  • 6
    Application Response Times
  • 6
    Performance of External Services
  • 6
    Application Availability Monitoring and Alerting
  • 6
    Error Analysis
  • 5
    JVM Performance Analyzer (Java)
  • 5
    Most Time Consuming Transactions
  • 4
    Top Database Operations
  • 4
    Easy to use
  • 4
    Browser Transaction Tracing
  • 3
    Application Map
  • 3
    Weekly Performance Email
  • 3
    Custom Dashboards
  • 3
    Pagoda Box integration
  • 2
    App Speed Index
  • 2
    Easy to setup
  • 2
    Background Jobs Transaction Analysis
  • 1
    Time Comparisons
  • 1
    Access to Performance Data API
  • 1
    Super Expensive
  • 1
    Team Collaboration Tools
  • 1
    Metric Data Retention
  • 1
    Metric Data Resolution
  • 1
    Worst Transactions by User Dissatisfaction
  • 1
    Real User Monitoring Overview
  • 1
    Real User Monitoring Analysis and Breakdown
  • 1
    Free
  • 1
    Best of the best, what more can you ask for
  • 1
    Best monitoring on the market
  • 1
    Rails integration
  • 1
    Incident Detection and Alerting
  • 0
    Cost
  • 0
    Exceptions
  • 0
    Price
  • 0
    Proce
  • 19
    Monitoring
  • 11
    Logging
  • 8
    Alerting
  • 7
    Tracing
  • 6
    Uptime Monitoring
  • 5
    Error Reporting
  • 4
    Multi-cloud
  • 3
    Production debugger
  • 2
    Many integrations
  • 1
    Backed by Google
  • 1
    Configured basically with GAE

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Cons of New Relic
Cons of Stackdriver
  • 20
    Pricing model doesn't suit microservices
  • 10
    UI isn't great
  • 7
    Expensive
  • 7
    Visualizations aren't very helpful
  • 5
    Hard to understand why things in your app are breaking
  • 2
    Not free

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What is New Relic?

The world’s best software and DevOps teams rely on New Relic to move faster, make better decisions and create best-in-class digital experiences. If you run software, you need to run New Relic. More than 50% of the Fortune 100 do too.

What is Stackdriver?

Google Stackdriver provides powerful monitoring, logging, and diagnostics. It equips you with insight into the health, performance, and availability of cloud-powered applications, enabling you to find and fix issues faster.

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What companies use Stackdriver?
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What are some alternatives to New Relic and Stackdriver?
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!
AppDynamics
AppDynamics develops application performance management (APM) solutions that deliver problem resolution for highly distributed applications through transaction flow monitoring and deep diagnostics.
Splunk
It provides the leading platform for Operational Intelligence. Customers use it to search, monitor, analyze and visualize machine data.
Airbrake
Airbrake collects errors for your applications in all major languages and frameworks. We alert you to new errors and give you critical context, trends and details needed to find and fix errors fast.
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.
See all alternatives