What is Observability?
Observability is one of the major fundamentals of DevOps, as it provides ways for you and your team to understand, in-depth, how your systems, applications and even users are behaving in a deployed environment. It enables you to identify and troubleshoot issues, bottlenecks and other misbehaving components, and thereby continuously improve your systems and processes.
To have great “observability” throughout your platform is a critical part of the business, and should not be overlooked.
Observability Best Practice
Below we’ve outlined some of the components, tools and practices, that are typically used to provide visibility into the performance, behaviour, and health of systems and applications.
The core essence of being able to greatly “observe”, is to have metrics. A metric can be anything from amount of errors, response/latency on an endpoint, amount of times a button is pushed, CPU or any custom metric you might think of. Monitoring metrics allows you to track key performance indicators (KPIs) and alerts for their systems and applications and identify issues in real-time.
A lot of our customer’s favourite tools consist of using, for example, Prometheus along with Grafana for visualization. Prometheus is also great for scraping custom metrics from your applications and emitting alerts based on these. One of the newer approaches for metrics instrumentation is using OpenTelemetry that has its own OTLP (OpenTelemetry Protocol) for shipping metrics and logs.
Tracing/profiling: With tracing tools, it allow teams to track and profile the flow of requests through their systems and applications, and to identify bottlenecks and performance issues. Common problems solved with tracing and profiling, would be if you are having issues with high memory or CPU usage in parts of your application. This can be done by examining the actual request flow, but also by combining it with metrics.
Logging: Logging is a crucial part of any application. Logging tools allow teams to capture and analyze log data from their systems and applications, which can be used to troubleshoot issues and identify patterns. There are tons of tools out there and it can be hard to navigate which ones to use.
At Tech Chapter, we have extensive experience using the Elastic Stack, consisting of Elastic Search, Logstash for processing and Kibana for visualization. We’re also well experienced in various Cloud tools/SAAS solutions, such AWS CloudWatch, Datadog, New Relic, Splunk and Dynatrace.
Our observability experts can help you achieve security, reliability, and optimization of your systems.
Great observability is important in the context of DevOps because it helps you ensure that your systems and applications are performing well and meets the needs of the users, as well as debugging errors reported by customers, ensuring reliability and meeting SLO’s.
By continuously monitoring and improving your systems and processes, you can reduce downtime and improve the reliability and performance of your systems.
Observability is a broad term, thus the amount of tools available can be a jungle. Some tools excel in specific areas, some come as a whole managed package and other can be self-hosted.
At Tech Chapter we are experienced in tailoring specific solutions to meet your needs.[Contact us](https://www.techchapter.com/en/contact/ today and find out how we can assist you in achieving your observability goals!