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Integrating Longitude with Elasticsearch and Kibana

April 03, 2019 | Ken Leoni

Longitude and Elastic Stack

New in Longitude V11 is integration with open-source Elastic Stack. Elastic Stack is a collection of open-source products from Elastic which deliver a number of capabilities, among them the ability to visualize, as well as search through unstructured data.

 

Longitude leverages two key components of the Elastic Stack:

  • Elasticsearch - a NoSQL database based on the Lucene search engine.
  • Kibana - a web interface that delivers a rich set of searching and visualization capabilities.

Elasticsearch

Longitude V11 now supports the capability to initiate a second data-flow - sending agentlessly collected data directly to Elasticsearch.

Elasticsearch (a NoSQL database) houses the Longitude data in indices (think of an index as the equivalent of a database in a traditional relational database). The data in the indices are stored as documents (think of a document as the equivalent of a record in a relational database). Documents contain within them the definition of the structure and type of data that reside within them. Elasticsearch stores all the information for a given object in a JSON formatted document.

A main advantage of document-based databases is the data can be unstructured, because each document uniquely defines what is in it. In a relational database records are fixed, so making changes to the structure to accommodate new and different data is an onerous process.

Because the quantity and structure of key performance and availability metrics associates with IT infrastructures and applications is constantly changing, the ability to readily ingest new and different data becomes especially important.

The Longitude indices hold two forms of data:

  1. Performance and availability metrics which are agentlessly collected by Longitude from private, public or hybrid cloud infrastructures
    Longitude V11 Elasticsearch

    This is a sample Longitude document in Elasticsearch, showing a set of network performance metrics for a virtual machine.

  2. Events collected by Longitude

    Events are generated when collected performance and availability metrics are evaluated by Longitude’s rule engine and a potential problem is detected. These events contain detail as to the specifics of a problem, including appropriate diagnostics.

    Longitude Sample Event Elasticsearch

    This is sample Longitude event stored as a document in Elasticsearch.

    Depending on IT's requirements this document can be easily enriched by Longitude with additional problem and resolution information.

Kibana

Kibana is the web interface that delivers visualizations (i.e. bar charts, pie charts, line charts, tables, maps... etc.) using Elasticsearch data. Because Elasticsearch is built on top of Apache Lucene, a high-performance search engine, users can also easily search, analyze, and visualize Longitude event data.

Longitude V11 ships with a set of pre-configured Kibana dashboards that allow users to readily visualize IT infrastructure and application performance data collected by Longitude.

Kibana Dashboard Longitude Server Data

This is one of many Longitude dashboards - this example is displaying key performance and availability metrics for a specific server - showing both historical and near real-time performance.

Elastic Stack and Longitude Together

The Elastic Stack / Longitude integration enhances the experience for both Longitude and Elastic Stack users. The deployment itself can be accomplished in just a few steps.

Longitude users can now take advantage of Kibana’s data visualization and exploration functions.

Kibana  VMware  Dashboard - Longitude Data

Users can choose to operate Elastics Stack either on premises or in the cloud - easily searching, analyzing, and visualizing their Longitude data

Elastic Stack users can now agentlessly receive IT infrastructure and application performance metrics from private, public or hybrid cloud infrastructures.

Longitude Automated Server Discovery

The Longitude Console directs Remote Statistics Servers which are lightweight proxies that can be distributed throughout private, public or hybrid cloud infrastructures to agentlessly collect key performance and availability data from servers, network devices, and applications -- using appropriate protocols and API's. (i.e. WMI, PowerShell, SSH, vSphere API, JDBC, SNMP, and more.).

The KPIs and events are then rolled up to any combination of Elasticsearch and Longitude instances.

Elastic Stack users need not be concerned with deploying agents as no code is deployed on the monitored servers and network devices to collect key performance and availability metrics.

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