DevOps

Best Open-Source DevOps Monitoring Tools in 2024

Explore the best open-source DevOps monitoring tools in 2024. Discover continuous monitoring, application performance, and cloud monitoring

DevOps has become crucial in modern development practices as infrastructure-as-code, cloud services, and CI/CD is a huge part of modernized infrastructure. Along with provisioning resources, DevOps monitoring is an extremely important part of the overall picture of infrastructure. This blog post looks at the best open-source monitoring tools in DevOps for continuous monitoring tools, many of which you can run in Docker on-premises, including application performance monitoring, and monitoring systems you can use with continuous integration.

Prometheus

What is Prometheus?

Prometheus is an open-source system monitoring and alerting toolkit originally built by SoundCloud. It’s now part of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. Prometheus collects and stores its metrics as time series data, i.e., data points are stored with their timestamp and optional key-value pairs called labels. It is known as one of the best devops monitoring tools and infrastructure monitoring tools available in the open-source community for monitoring infrastructure components.

Prometheus
Prometheus

Pros:

  • High scalability and a powerful query language (PromQL) for data analysis.
  • Active and large community providing a wealth of plugins and integrations.
  • Provides a multidimensional data model and time series data identified by metric name and key/value pairs.

Cons:

  • Complex setup and steep learning curve for new users.
  • Long-term storage solutions require additional components.
  • Relies heavily on community for support and documentation, which can vary in quality.

Learn more about Prometheus here: Download | Prometheus.

Grafana

What is Grafana?

Grafana is an open-source platform for monitoring and observability that is well known in the community as a great DevOps monitoring tool. It allows for visualizing machine generated data and integrates with a wide range of data sources, including Prometheus, ElasticSearch, and many others. It allows you to create and share dashboards that visualize real-time data.

Grafana
Grafana

Pros:

  • Rich visualization options with customizable dashboards.
  • Broad support for various data sources and mixed data sources within the same dashboard.
  • Active community support and continuous addition of new features.

Cons:

  • Can become resource-intensive with complex dashboards or large data volumes.
  • Initial setup and data source configuration may be challenging for beginners.
  • Dashboards and visualizations require manual setup, which can be time-consuming.

Learn more about Grafana here: Download Grafana | Grafana Labs.

Nagios Core

What is Nagios Core?

Nagios Core is the heart of the Nagios monitoring suite. It is an open-source tool for monitoring complex IT infrastructure. It provides monitoring for servers, networks, and system health and it can alert you to problems before they affect critical business processes.

Nagios
Nagios

Pros:

  • Comprehensive Monitoring: Offers wide-ranging monitoring capabilities for systems, networks, and applications.
  • Extensibility: A vast array of plugins available, developed by the community, allows for monitoring almost any service or application.
  • Active Community: Benefit from extensive documentation and a supportive community for troubleshooting and enhancements.

Cons:

  • Complex Configuration: The initial setup and configuration can be daunting for new users without substantial IT experience.
  • UI Outdated: Some users may find the user interface less modern compared to newer tools on the market.

Learn more about Nagios here: Downloads | Nagios Open Source.

InfluxDB

What is InfluxDB?

InfluxDB is an open-source time-series database that can handle high write and query loads. It is a tool for DevOps teams focused on monitoring application performance, events, and metrics.

Influxdb
Influxdb

Pros:

  • High Performance: Optimized for fast, high-availability storage and retrieval of time-series data in fields such as operations monitoring, application metrics, IoT sensor data, and real-time analytics.
  • Easy to Use: Offers a straightforward querying language and integrates well with Grafana for visualization.
  • Scalability: Scales horizontally to support millions of data points per second.

Cons:

  • Complexity in Clustering: Setting up clustering for high availability can be complex and may require enterprise features.
  • Storage Management: Managing large datasets over time requires careful planning to avoid performance degradation.

Learn more about InfluxDB here: InfluxDB Time Series Data Platform | InfluxData.

Telegraf

What is Telegraf?

Telegraf is an agent written in Go for collecting metrics and data from various sources and writing them into InfluxDB or other targets. It’s part of the TICK stack (Telegraf, InfluxDB, Chronograf, and Kapacitor) developed by InfluxData. Telegraf has a simple design with a modular architecture that allows admins to create and configure plugins to collect metrics from a wide range of sources.

Telegraf
Telegraf

Pros:

  • Versatile Data Collection: Supports a vast array of input plugins for collecting metrics, events, and logs from systems, databases, applications, and services.
  • Minimal Resource Usage: Efficiently uses system resources, ensuring minimal impact on host performance.
  • Extensible Plugin System: Users can extend Telegraf’s capabilities with custom plugins, allowing for flexible and tailored data collection strategies.

Cons:

  • Complex Configuration for New Users: While versatile, setting up and configuring Telegraf with specific plugins and outputs can be daunting for beginners.
  • Dependence on Other Tools for Visualization: Requires integration with tools like Grafana for data visualization, as it does not provide built-in UI for monitoring data.

Learn more about Telegraf here: Telegraf | InfluxData.

Graylog

What is Graylog?

Graylog is an open-source log management tool that enables real-time capture, storage, and analysis of terabytes of machine data. It is designed to help simplify log analysis and it provides a centralized platform for storing all log data. It also provides search capabilities, dashboards, and alerting. Graylog has a user-friendly web interface you can easily navigate and manage logging. It has been used by many for troubleshooting and viewing security logs.

Graylog
Graylog

Pros:

  • Powerful Search Engine: Allows for fast and efficient querying of log data, facilitating rapid issue diagnosis and analysis.
  • Comprehensive Alerting Mechanism: Enables real-time alerting based on log data patterns, helping identify issues as they occur.
  • Scalable Architecture: Designed to handle large volumes of data, making it suitable for both small and large-scale deployments.

Cons:

  • Initial Setup Complexity: Setting up Graylog and configuring it to collect logs from various sources can be complex and time-consuming.
  • Resource Intensiveness: Can be resource-heavy, especially in larger deployments, requiring significant storage and computing power.

Learn more about Graylog here: Graylog: Industry Leading Log Management & SIEM.

Icinga

What is Icinga?

Icinga is an open-source monitoring system that checks the availability of network resources. It can notify users of outages and errors, and generates performance data for reporting. Icinga can monitor large, complex environments across many locations. It has a modular design that allows adding on features and integrating with many other DevOps tools. It is a good choice for infrastructure monitoring that can detect downtime and anomalies.

Icinga
Icinga

Pros:

  • Flexible Configuration: Offers a DSL (Domain Specific Language) for defining complex monitoring conditions and configurations.
  • Web-Based Interface: Provides a comprehensive web UI for monitoring status, managing configurations, and viewing reports and dashboards.
  • Integration Capabilities: Supports integration with numerous third-party applications for enhanced monitoring and alerting workflows.

Cons:

  • Learning Curve: The flexibility and power of Icinga come with a complexity that can be challenging for new users to master.
  • Manual Intervention Required: Some configuration and maintenance tasks may require manual intervention, especially in custom setups.

Learn more about Icinga here: Icinga » Monitor your entire Infrastructure with Icinga.

Collectd

What is Collectd?

Collectd is a daemon that collects system and application performance metrics at set intervals. You can store the values in a variety of ways. You can gather metrics from many different sources and also gives performance analysis to help predict system load. Collectd can monitor almost every aspect of system performance.

Collectd
Collectd

Pros:

  • Lightweight and Efficient: Designed to run with minimal system impact, ensuring performance metrics are collected without significantly affecting system resources.
  • Extensive Plugin Support: Features a wide range of plugins for collecting data from various services and applications.
  • Versatile Data Storage: Supports multiple formats and targets for storing metrics, from local files to databases and integration with visualization tools.

Cons:

  • Complex Configuration: The breadth of plugins and options can lead to complex configuration files that may be daunting for newcomers.
  • Limited Visualization: Primarily a collection tool; relies on external solutions for data visualization and analysis.

Learn more about Collectd here: collectd | The system statistics collection daemon.

Sensu

What is Sensu?

Sensu is a monitoring solution designed to handle monitoring tasks across services, applications, and infrastructure. It provides a framework for monitoring checks, event processing, and alerting. It is an ideal choice for dynamic and scalable environments. Sensu offers a modern and flexible monitoring approach that supports containerized, hybrid, and cloud environments.

Sensu
Sensu

Pros:

  • Scalability: Easily scales to monitor thousands of nodes across different environments.
  • Extensible: Offers numerous integrations with other tools and services, enhancing its monitoring capabilities.
  • Event Pipeline: Features a powerful event pipeline for handling alerts, enabling complex workflows for incident resolution.

Cons:

  • Learning Curve: The flexibility and power of Sensu come with a learning curve, particularly in understanding how to best utilize its event pipeline and integrations.
  • Setup and Configuration: Initial setup can be involved, requiring a good understanding of the underlying architecture.

Learn more about Sensu here: Sensu | Sensu Go Downloads.

Netdata

What is Netdata?

Netdata is an open-source tool designed for real-time health monitoring and performance troubleshooting of systems and applications. It gives insights with web dashboards and metrics updated every second. Netdata is known for its cloud-centric configuration and is fairly plug-and-play.

Netdata
Netdata

Pros:

  • Instant Visualization: Provides real-time, detailed metrics with instant visualization without the need for configuration.
  • Comprehensive Coverage: Monitors a wide range of system metrics, application performance, and network traffic.
  • Low Overhead: Designed to run with minimal system resources, ensuring monitoring doesn’t impact performance.

Cons:

  • Data Retention: By default, stores detailed metric data in memory, which can limit historical data analysis over longer periods.
  • Complexity in Large Environments: While excellent for individual servers, managing Netdata across a large infrastructure can become complex.

Learn more about Netdata here: Netdata: Monitoring and troubleshooting transformed.

LibreNMS

What is LibreNMS?

LibreNMS is a network monitoring system that emphasizes simplicity and usability. It supports a broad range of network hardware and operating systems. It has auto discovery that automatically identifies network devices and services. This capability makes it easy to set up and expand network monitoring without extensive manual configuration.

Librenms
Librenms

Pros:

  • Auto-Discovery: Simplifies network monitoring setup by automatically detecting devices and services.
  • User-Friendly Web Interface: Offers an intuitive web interface for managing network monitoring, alerts, and configurations.
  • Extensive Device Support: Compatible with a wide array of network devices and standards, ensuring broad applicability.

Cons:

  • Dependency on SNMP: Heavily relies on SNMP for data collection, which may limit monitoring capabilities for devices with poor SNMP support.
  • Interface Clutter: The amount of information available in the UI can be overwhelming, especially in large deployments.

Learn more about LibreNMS here: LibreNMS.

OpenNMS

What is OpenNMS?

OpenNMS is designed for comprehensive network monitoring solutions. It can provide service monitoring, performance measurement, and notifications. OpenNMS can handle thousands of nodes and hosts and provide details into network performance and issues of very large environments.

Opennms
Opennms

Pros:

  • Scalability and Flexibility: Designed to scale and adapt to large and complex network environments.
  • Comprehensive Monitoring: Offers detailed monitoring of services, network flow data, and performance metrics.
  • Advanced Fault Management: Includes sophisticated tools for fault detection and notifications, enhancing operational awareness.

Cons:

  • Complex Configuration: Tailoring OpenNMS to specific needs can require significant effort and expertise in network management.
  • Resource Intensity: As a comprehensive solution, it can be resource-intensive, necessary for monitoring highly dynamic networks.

Learn more about OpenNMS here: OpenNMS – Open Source Network Monitoring Platform.

Uptime Kuma

What is Uptime Kuma?

Uptime Kuma is a self-hosted monitoring tool that is well-known in the home lab community. It tracks and alerts on the uptime and response time of services and websites. It’s gaining popularity for its simple and intuitive interface and alerting features. It is an excellent choice for teams looking to closely monitor their service availability without relying on external SaaS solutions.

Uptime kuma
Uptime kuma

Pros:

  • User-Friendly Interface: Offers a clean, intuitive interface for monitoring services and viewing historical uptime data.
  • Comprehensive Alerting: Supports multiple notification methods, including email, webhooks, and integrated messaging platforms, ensuring timely alerts.
  • Self-Hosted Privacy: As a self-hosted solution, it provides full control over data and monitoring, enhancing privacy and security.

Cons:

  • Self-Management: Requires setup and ongoing management by the user, including server maintenance and updates.
  • Limited Scalability: While suitable for small to medium-sized environments, it may face challenges scaling to monitor large infrastructures with hundreds of services.

Learn more about Uptime Kuma here: GitHub – louislam/uptime-kuma: A fancy self-hosted monitoring tool.

VictoriaMetrics

What is VictoriaMetrics?

VictoriaMetrics is a scalable time-series database for storing and analyzing large volumes of metrics. It is designed to collect, store, and monitor metrics from many sources with high performance and lower resource consumption. DevOps environments benefit from its simplicity and user experience focused on performance and scalability.

Victoria metrics
Victoria metrics

Pros:

  • High Performance & Scalability: Handles millions of metrics per second, supporting high ingestion rates and queries with minimal CPU and memory usage.
  • Compatibility: Offers Prometheus-like query language and is compatible with Prometheus’ ecosystem, facilitating easy migration or integration.
  • Efficient Storage: Uses compression techniques to reduce disk space usage for stored time-series data.

Cons:

  • Limited Built-in Visualization: Primarily a database, it requires integration with external tools like Grafana for data visualization.
  • Community and Ecosystem: While growing, its community and ecosystem are not as large as some other established projects.

Learn more about Victoria Metrics here: GitHub – VictoriaMetrics/VictoriaMetrics: VictoriaMetrics: fast, cost-effective monitoring solution and time series database.

Thanos

What is Thanos?

Thanos is an extension of Prometheus. It is designed to provide a scalable and durable monitoring system. It can centralize Prometheus instances without sacrificing the reliability and simplicity Prometheus is known for. Thanos adds a global query view with unlimited retention of metrics and downsampling to improve query efficiency with large datasets.

Thanos monitoring
Thanos monitoring

Pros:

  • Global View: Aggregates data from multiple Prometheus servers, providing a unified view across all metrics.
  • Long-term Storage: Integrates with cloud storage solutions to provide cost-effective, long-term storage of metrics.
  • High Availability: Offers a robust setup with high availability, ensuring metrics are accessible even if a Prometheus instance is down.

Cons:

  • Complexity: Setting up and configuring Thanos for optimal use can be more complex than using Prometheus alone.
  • Operational Overhead: Requires management of additional components, which may introduce operational complexity.

Learn more about Thanos here: Thanos – Highly available Prometheus setup with long term storage capabilities.

Loki

What is Loki?

Loki is a multi-tenant log aggregation system inspired by Prometheus. It is designed to store and query logs from all your applications and provides a cost-effective solution for log aggregation. Loki allows admins to switch seamlessly between metrics and logs which helps with observability and debugging many types of issues.

Grafana loki
Grafana loki

Pros:

  • Efficient Storage: Designed to minimize storage and operational costs, making log aggregation more accessible.
  • Seamless Integration: Works well with Grafana, allowing for efficient querying and visualization of logs alongside metrics.
  • Simple and Scalable: Offers a simple operational model, easily scaling out as needed without complex configuration.

Cons:

  • Query Language Learning Curve: While inspired by Prometheus, Loki’s query language can take time to learn for new users.
  • Focused on Logs: Primarily focused on logs, not a general-purpose data store, which might require additional tools for comprehensive monitoring solutions.

Learn more about Grafana Loki here: Installation | Grafana Loki documentation.

Jaeger

What is Jaeger?

Jaege is a distributed tracing system inspired by Dapper and OpenZipkin. It can monitor and troubleshoot transactions in complex distributed systems. It provides end-to-end latency visibility that can help developers and DevOps professionals understand their application performance and architecture.

Jaegar distributed tracing
Jaegar distributed tracing

Pros:

  • End-to-End Tracing: Offers detailed tracing of requests across distributed services, essential for microservices architecture.
  • Rich Visualization: Includes a web-based UI for tracing transactions, understanding service dependencies, and performance bottlenecks.
  • Integration and Extensibility: Supports integration with various storage backends, including Elasticsearch and Cassandra, and can be extended for additional use cases.

Cons:

  • Complexity in Large Systems: While powerful, deploying and managing Jaeger in very large systems can be challenging.
  • Overhead: Instrumenting applications to send traces to Jaeger can introduce additional overhead, especially if not carefully managed.

Learn more about Jaegar tracing here: Jaeger: open source, distributed tracing platform (jaegertracing.io).

Cadvisor

What is Cadvisor?

Cadvisor (Container Advisor) is an open-source tool developed by Google that provides analytics and monitoring for running containers. It automatically collects, aggregates, processes, and exports information about running containers. It focusses on resource usage and performance aspects and can feed these into automation pipelines.

Cadvisor
Cadvisor

Pros:

  • Container-Specific Metrics: Designed specifically for container monitoring, providing detailed metrics on CPU, memory, filesystem, and network usage.
  • Easy Integration: Works seamlessly with container orchestration tools like Kubernetes, enhancing its monitoring capabilities.
  • Lightweight and Simple: Easy to deploy as a container itself, offering a straightforward way to start monitoring container performance immediately.

Cons:

  • Limited Historical Data: Primarily focused on real-time metrics, it may not retain detailed historical data

Learn more about cAdvisor here: GitHub – google/cadvisor: Analyzes resource usage and performance characteristics of running containers.

Zipkin

What is Zipkin?

Zipkin is an open-source distributed tracing system that helps gather timing data. This data can be used as needed to troubleshoot latency problems in microservice architectures. It can collect and lookup this data through using the UI and helps developers with tracking a request’s path through services and identify where delays are happening.

Zipkin
Zipkin

Pros:

  • Deep Visibility: Provides detailed insights into the behavior and performance of distributed systems, helping to pinpoint latency issues.
  • Community and Integrations: Has a wide range of community-driven integrations, making it compatible with various programming languages and frameworks.
  • Scalable Architecture: Designed to handle high volumes of trace data, Zipkin can scale with your infrastructure as it grows.

Cons:

  • Complexity for New Users: Understanding distributed tracing and effectively using Zipkin can be challenging for newcomers.
  • Data Volume Management: Storing and managing trace data can become challenging, requiring efficient retention policies and scaling strategies.

Learn more about Zipkin here: OpenZipkin · A distributed tracing system.

OpenTelemetry

What is OpenTelemetry?

OpenTelemetry is an observability framework for cloud-native software. It provides a single set of APIs, libraries, agents, and instrumentation to capture distributed traces and metrics from your application. Its goal is to make it easy for developers to generate, collect, and export telemetry data (traces, metrics, and logs) to the analytics tool of their choice. This helps with performance and observability analysis decisions and actions.

Opentelemetry
Opentelemetry

Pros:

  • Unified Instrumentation: Offers a standardized way to collect telemetry data across services, reducing the need for multiple monitoring tools.
  • Wide Language Support: Provides implementations for the most common programming languages, ensuring broad application compatibility.
  • Flexible Export Options: Supports exporting data to numerous observability platforms, allowing teams to use their preferred tools for analysis and monitoring.

Cons:

  • Evolving Project: As a relatively new and rapidly evolving project, some features and documentation may be in flux, potentially leading to integration challenges.
  • Initial Setup and Configuration: Integrating OpenTelemetry into existing systems and configuring it for optimal data collection can require significant effort.

Learn more about OpenTelemetry here: OpenTelemetry.

Zabbix

What is Zabbix?

Zabbix is a network and application monitoring tool that offers an open-source solution for monitoring the performance and availability of servers, network devices, and applications. Zabbix provides detailed insights into IT infrastructure health. It supports a wide range of monitoring options, from simple checks to distributed network monitoring, performance tuning, and incident response.

Zabbix
Zabbix

Pros:

  • Versatility and Extensibility: Can monitor virtually anything within a network, including servers, network devices, and applications, using a variety of methods, from SNMP and IPMI to custom scripts.
  • Advanced Alerting System: Features a highly configurable alerting function that can notify administrators of potential issues via various channels, including email, SMS, or custom scripts, ensuring rapid response to incidents.
  • Rich Visualization Options: Offers a wide array of data visualization options, including graphs, charts, maps, and screens, making it easier to understand the state of the monitored environment at a glance.
  • Scalability: Designed to scale from small environments to large, distributed networks with thousands of devices.

Cons:

  • Complex Configuration: The extensive feature set and flexibility come with a steep learning curve. Configuring Zabbix for specific monitoring needs can be complex, especially for beginners.
  • Resource Intensity for Large Deployments: In very large and complex environments, Zabbix can have resource-intensive requirements, requiring significant database and server resources to maintain performance.
  • UI Can Be Overwhelming: Some users may find the user interface to be cluttered or not as intuitive as other modern monitoring solutions, especially when managing a large number of monitors and alerts.

Learn more about Zabbix here: Download and install Zabbix.

New Relic

What is New Relic?

New Relic isn’t actually an open-source solution, but makes the list since it has a very generous free tier that can be used as a cloud-based observability platform for performance monitoring and management. It provides full-stack monitoring, including application performance management (APM) to real-time analytics. New Relic enables developers to track and troubleshoot performance of systems. It can provide deep insights into how software and systems are performing across multiple types of infrastructure.

New relic
New relic

Pros:

  • Comprehensive Observability: Provides a unified view across the full technology stack, from the application layer down to the infrastructure.
  • Real-time Analytics: Features powerful analytics capabilities, allowing teams to quickly identify issues and understand customer experiences.
  • Scalability and Flexibility: Scales to meet the needs of both small startups and large enterprises, with flexible pricing models to match.

Cons:

  • Complexity and Learning Curve: The breadth of features can be overwhelming, requiring time to learn how to use the platform effectively.
  • Cost: While powerful, New Relic can become costly as usage increases, especially for larger organizations or more extensive monitoring needs.

Learn more about New Relic here: New Relic | Monitor, Debug and Improve Your Entire Stack.

ELK Stack

What is the ELK Stack (Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana)?

The ELK Stack combines three open-source products: Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana. It offers a platform for searching, analyzing, and visualizing data in real-time. Elasticsearch is a search and analytics engine. Logstash is a server‑side data processing pipeline that ingests data from multiple sources simultaneously and transforms it. It then sends it to a “stash” like Elasticsearch. Kibana lets users visualize data with charts and graphs in Elasticsearch.

Elk stack
Elk stack

Pros:

  • Powerful Data Processing: Logstash can process a wide array of data formats from various sources, making it versatile for log analysis and more.
  • Advanced Search Capabilities: Elastic stack search offers fast, scalable search, allowing you to quickly find the information you need within large volumes of data.
  • Rich Data Visualization: Kibana provides comprehensive visualization tools, making it easier to analyze and gain insights from your data.

Cons:

  • Resource Intensive: Can require significant resources, especially as data volume grows, impacting Elasticsearch performance.
  • Complexity in Setup and Management: Setting up and optimizing the ELK stack can be complex, requiring expertise in configuration and management.
  • Integration Effort: While ELK is powerful, integrating it into existing systems and configuring it to meet specific needs can require significant effort.

Learn more about ELK stack here: ELK Stack: Elasticsearch, Kibana, Beats & Logstash | Elastic.

Wrapping up the best open-source DevOps Monitoring Tools in 2024

Organizations looking to monitor their deployment of modern infrastructure, including production and testing environments, need to use modern DevOps monitoring tools for keep an eye on containerized and cloud infrastructure running in Kubernetes and Openshift. While there are proprietary enterprise solutions businesses can take advantage of, like Splunk, Datadog, Dynatrace, AppDynamics, there are many great open-source solutions that provide engineers with the functionality needed for monitoring modern software development and DevOps processes. The world of open source continues to get stronger for server monitoring and dialing in on performance issues and failures in the development process on top of software systems. When it comes to cost-effectiveness, open-source solutions make a lot of sense in IT operations with tremendous benefits. The list of apps we have considered in the post contains only a few of the technologies available in building out a monitoring solution for companies and cloud providers

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Brandon Lee

Brandon Lee is the Senior Writer, Engineer and owner at Virtualizationhowto.com and has over two decades of experience in Information Technology. Having worked for numerous Fortune 500 companies as well as in various industries, Brandon has extensive experience in various IT segments and is a strong advocate for open source technologies. Brandon holds many industry certifications, loves the outdoors and spending time with family.

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