Kibana

Kibana

DevOps / Monitoring / Monitoring Tools
Avatar of Puciek
Devops guy at X20X Development LTD

Often enough I have to explain my way of going about setting up a CI/CD pipeline with multiple deployment platforms. Since I am a bit tired of yapping the same every single time, I've decided to write it up and share with the world this way, and send people to read it instead ;). I will explain it on "live-example" of how the Rome got built, basing that current methodology exists only of readme.md and wishes of good luck (as it usually is ;)).

It always starts with an app, whatever it may be and reading the readmes available while Vagrant and VirtualBox is installing and updating. Following that is the first hurdle to go over - convert all the instruction/scripts into Ansible playbook(s), and only stopping when doing a clear vagrant up or vagrant reload we will have a fully working environment. As our Vagrant environment is now functional, it's time to break it! This is the moment to look for how things can be done better (too rigid/too lose versioning? Sloppy environment setup?) and replace them with the right way to do stuff, one that won't bite us in the backside. This is the point, and the best opportunity, to upcycle the existing way of doing dev environment to produce a proper, production-grade product.

I should probably digress here for a moment and explain why. I firmly believe that the way you deploy production is the same way you should deploy develop, shy of few debugging-friendly setting. This way you avoid the discrepancy between how production work vs how development works, which almost always causes major pains in the back of the neck, and with use of proper tools should mean no more work for the developers. That's why we start with Vagrant as developer boxes should be as easy as vagrant up, but the meat of our product lies in Ansible which will do meat of the work and can be applied to almost anything: AWS, bare metal, docker, LXC, in open net, behind vpn - you name it.

We must also give proper consideration to monitoring and logging hoovering at this point. My generic answer here is to grab Elasticsearch, Kibana, and Logstash. While for different use cases there may be better solutions, this one is well battle-tested, performs reasonably and is very easy to scale both vertically (within some limits) and horizontally. Logstash rules are easy to write and are well supported in maintenance through Ansible, which as I've mentioned earlier, are at the very core of things, and creating triggers/reports and alerts based on Elastic and Kibana is generally a breeze, including some quite complex aggregations.

If we are happy with the state of the Ansible it's time to move on and put all those roles and playbooks to work. Namely, we need something to manage our CI/CD pipelines. For me, the choice is obvious: TeamCity. It's modern, robust and unlike most of the light-weight alternatives, it's transparent. What I mean by that is that it doesn't tell you how to do things, doesn't limit your ways to deploy, or test, or package for that matter. Instead, it provides a developer-friendly and rich playground for your pipelines. You can do most the same with Jenkins, but it has a quite dated look and feel to it, while also missing some key functionality that must be brought in via plugins (like quality REST API which comes built-in with TeamCity). It also comes with all the common-handy plugins like Slack or Apache Maven integration.

The exact flow between CI and CD varies too greatly from one application to another to describe, so I will outline a few rules that guide me in it: 1. Make build steps as small as possible. This way when something breaks, we know exactly where, without needing to dig and root around. 2. All security credentials besides development environment must be sources from individual Vault instances. Keys to those containers should exist only on the CI/CD box and accessible by a few people (the less the better). This is pretty self-explanatory, as anything besides dev may contain sensitive data and, at times, be public-facing. Because of that appropriate security must be present. TeamCity shines in this department with excellent secrets-management. 3. Every part of the build chain shall consume and produce artifacts. If it creates nothing, it likely shouldn't be its own build. This way if any issue shows up with any environment or version, all developer has to do it is grab appropriate artifacts to reproduce the issue locally. 4. Deployment builds should be directly tied to specific Git branches/tags. This enables much easier tracking of what caused an issue, including automated identifying and tagging the author (nothing like automated regression testing!).

Speaking of deployments, I generally try to keep it simple but also with a close eye on the wallet. Because of that, I am more than happy with AWS or another cloud provider, but also constantly peeking at the loads and do we get the value of what we are paying for. Often enough the pattern of use is not constantly erratic, but rather has a firm baseline which could be migrated away from the cloud and into bare metal boxes. That is another part where this approach strongly triumphs over the common Docker and CircleCI setup, where you are very much tied in to use cloud providers and getting out is expensive. Here to embrace bare-metal hosting all you need is a help of some container-based self-hosting software, my personal preference is with Proxmox and LXC. Following that all you must write are ansible scripts to manage hardware of Proxmox, similar way as you do for Amazon EC2 (ansible supports both greatly) and you are good to go. One does not exclude another, quite the opposite, as they can live in great synergy and cut your costs dramatically (the heavier your base load, the bigger the savings) while providing production-grade resiliency.

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How to design CI/CD pipelines, or rather how I do it. | Tymoteusz Paul - X20X Development (puciek.me)
21 upvotes2 comments3.2M views
Avatar of psunnn
Software Engineer at Stitch Fix

Elasticsearch's built-in visualization tool, Kibana, is robust and the appropriate tool in many cases. However, it is geared specifically towards log exploration and time-series data, and we felt that its steep learning curve would impede adoption rate among data scientists accustomed to writing SQL. The solution was to create something that would replicate some of Kibana's essential functionality while hiding Elasticsearch's complexity behind SQL-esque labels and terminology ("table" instead of "index", "group by" instead of "sub-aggregation") in the UI.

Elasticsearch's API is really well-suited for aggregating time-series data, indexing arbitrary data without defining a schema, and creating dashboards. For the purpose of a data exploration backend, Elasticsearch fits the bill really well. Users can send an HTTP request with aggregations and sub-aggregations to an index with millions of documents and get a response within seconds, thus allowing them to rapidly iterate through their data.

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Building a Data Exploration Tool with React, Redux, Victory, and Elasticsearch - Stitch Fix Tech Stack | StackShare (stackshare.io)
11 upvotes198.6K views

This is my stack in Application & Data

JavaScript PHP HTML5 jQuery Redis Amazon EC2 Ubuntu Sass Vue.js Firebase Laravel Lumen Amazon RDS GraphQL MariaDB

My Utilities Tools

Google Analytics Postman Elasticsearch

My Devops Tools

Git GitHub GitLab npm Visual Studio Code Kibana Sentry BrowserStack

My Business Tools

Slack

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10 upvotes1 comment1.4M views
Avatar of tbragin
Product Lead, Observability at Elastic

ELK Stack (Elasticsearch, Logstash, Kibana) is widely known as the de facto way to centralize logs from operational systems. The assumption is that Elasticsearch (a "search engine") is a good place to put text-based logs for the purposes of free-text search. And indeed, simply searching text-based logs for the word "error" or filtering logs based on a set of a well-known tags is extremely powerful, and is often where most users start.

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Observability with the Elastic Stack - Elastic Tech Stack (stackshare.io)
10 upvotes501.2K views
Recommends
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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Cenacle Technology & Consultation Services (cenacle.co.in)
9 upvotes495.9K views
Recommends
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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8 upvotes97.6K views
Needs advice
on
KibanaKibana
and
New RelicNew Relic

I need to choose a monitoring tool for my project, but currently, my application doesn't have much load or many users. My application is not generating GBs of data. We don't want to send the user information to New Relic because it's a 3rd party tool. And we can deploy Kibana locally on our server. What should I use, Kibana or New Relic?

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6 upvotes19.8K views
Replies (2)
Recommends
New RelicNew Relic

New Relic's value to me is the ability to see how end users perceive the application. Kibana is going to be limited to what is sent to it. The value to larger companies is paying New Relic to package up knowledge on what are typical trigger values. If you your scope is small, not a global website for example, and your key outage risks are local events then Kibana would be a low cost solution but you may be the sole provider of configuration logic.

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2 upvotes296 views
Avatar of mahdi13
Software Developer
Recommends
New RelicNew Relic

Kibana and ELK stack is way far better in enterprise solution. But if you are going to deploy something smal, it does't worth the configuration and maintenance of the ELK stack. You'll have lots of challenges every day. If you have a small team, I do not recommend on-promiss ELK. You can also consider ELK hosted services which are very easier to use, like logz.io

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2 upvotes297 views

One size definitely doesn鈥檛 fit all when it comes to open source monitoring solutions, and executing generally understood best practices in the context of unique distributed systems presents all sorts of problems. Megan Anctil, a senior engineer on the Technical Operations team at Slack gave a talk at an O鈥橰eilly Velocity Conference sharing pain points and lessons learned at wrangling known technologies such as Icinga, Graphite, Grafana, and the Elastic Stack to best fit the company鈥檚 use cases.

At the time, Slack used a few well-known monitoring tools since it鈥檚 Technical Operations team wasn鈥檛 large enough to build an in-house solution for all of these. Nor did the team think it鈥檚 sustainable to throw money at the problem, given the volume of information processed and the not-insignificant price and rigidity of many vendor solutions. With thousands of servers across multiple regions and millions of metrics and documents being processed and indexed per second, the team had to figure out how to scale these technologies to fit Slack鈥檚 needs.

On the backend, they experimented with multiple clusters in both Graphite and ELK, distributed Icinga nodes, and more. At the same time, they鈥檝e tried to build usability into Grafana that reflects the team鈥檚 mental models of the system and have found ways to make alerts from Icinga more insightful and actionable.

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Our many monitoring monsters: Systems engineering conference: O'Reilly Velocity, San Jose, CA, June 19 - 22, 2017 (conferences.oreilly.com)
5 upvotes304.7K views
Recommends
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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4 upvotes777.1K views

With interactions across each other and mobile devices, logging is important as it is information for internal cases like debugging and business cases like dynamic pricing.

With multiple Kafka clusters, data is archived into Hadoop before expiration. Data is ingested in realtime and indexed into an ELK stack. The ELK stack comprises of Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana for searching and visualization.

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The Uber Engineering Tech Stack, Part I: The Foundation | Uber Engineering Blog (eng.uber.com)
4 upvotes412.8K views