4–7 Nov 2019

What remains of dashboards and metrics without the hype and anti-patterns

Björn Rabenstein (Grafana Labs)
14:2015:00 Wednesday, 6 November 2019
Location: Hall A6
Average rating: ****.
(4.00, 4 ratings)

Who is this presentation for?

  • SREs and DevOps practitioners

Level

Intermediate

Description

Open source tools for dashboarding and metrics-based monitoring and alerting have come a long way over the last handful of years. After the age of #MonitoringSucks, we were all intoxicated by the tools readily available for everyone. Giant wall screens with dashboards appeared in our offices, and Prometheus became king. Right now, we’re probably very close to the peak of the hype. The time is ripe for the wise among our peers to issue warnings and let us know that adding logs and traces to complete the proverbial three pillars of observability will provide zero answers.

There has been a number of recent talks discussing the true nature of observability and what the next step has to be to move forward. That’s great, because it’s a topic of utmost importance. However, Björn Rabenstein has a different focus. While taking the concerns seriously, Björn invites you to not throw out the baby with the bathwater, but rather take a step back and get a sober perspective. What are metrics and dashboards actually good for (separately and in conjunction, as they are not as tightly coupled as you might think)? Studying the most common anti-patterns will enable you to avoid the pitfalls and to enjoy metrics and dashboards responsibly instead. To overstretch the metaphor: Even if that one pillar is flawed and stocky, standing on it will still get you a whole lot of low-hanging fruit within reach.

Prerequisite knowledge

  • Experience with dashboards and metrics (useful but not required)

What you'll learn

  • Understand why metrics and dashboards offer a really good return of investment if used in the right way
Photo of Björn Rabenstein

Björn Rabenstein

Grafana Labs

Björn Rabenstein is an engineer at Grafana Labs and a Prometheus developer. Previously, he was a production engineer at SoundCloud, a site reliability engineer at Google, and a number cruncher for science.

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