Search

Search

InfluxDB and Annotations

This post assumes you’ve already setup InfluxDB and have Grafana running.

Inserting annotations

Annotations are not a special type of resource, instead it’s just another metric that you query with a feature in Grafana to display on other metrics. This means the same insert Line Protocol applies to the Annotation.

This post on maxchadwick.xyz greatly helped me get started: Creating Grafana Annotations with InfluxDb Max Chadwick

Per Max’s original post it supports html as well, so you could link for example to a build, test result, or anything else you want to link to from your performance statistics.

This provides an annotation on your timeline in a nice format for browsing through the timeline. I can see usage cases for identifying specific activity or progress in tests, helping coorelate the performance metrics with known activity steps from a build, script, or other related tasks. You could have an type of activity trigger this powershell insert, providing a lot of flexibility to help relate useful metrics to your monitoring.

My personal use case has been to ensure load testing start/end times and other significant points of time in a test are easily visible in the same timeline I’m reviewing metrics on.

Warning: I did experience performance degradation with Grafana and many annotations on a timeline. I found just disabling the annotations kept this from occurring, so you only pull them when youd them.

inserting+annotation+shows+on+graph

Adding Annotations to Grafana

Now that you have the results being inserted into InfluxDB, you can query these in Grafana as annonations to overlay your graphs.

Adding+Annotation+To+Grafana+to+pull+from+InfluxDB

Potential Uses

I could see a whole lot of uses for this!

  • insert at build related activity
  • Windows update
  • Specific Database Related Maintenance like Ola Hallengren’s index optimize or database integrity check

Monitoring always loses it’s value when you have a limited picture of what is happening. Triggering relevant details for stuff that might help analyze activity might be the key to immediately gaining an understanding on what is causing a spike of activity, or of better evaluating the timeline of a load test.