Understanding the metrics component of DC/OS

The metrics pipeline for DC/OS 1.12 is Telegraf. Telegraf provides metrics from DC/OS cluster hosts, containers running on those hosts, and from applications running on DC/OS via statsd. Telegraf is natively integrated with DC/OS. By default, it exposes metrics in Prometheus format, and in JSON format via an API.


DC/OS collects three types of metrics as follows:

  • System: - Metrics about each node in the DC/OS cluster.
  • Container: - Metrics about cgroup allocations from tasks running in the DC/OS Universal Container Runtime or Docker Engine runtime.
  • Application: - Metrics emitted from any application running on the Universal Container Runtime.

Metrics are tagged by origin and made available in Prometheus format on port 61091 on each node. They are also available via the DC/OS Metrics API.

Telegraf is a metrics pipeline which is shipped as part of the DC/OS distribution to collect metrics from system, container, and application. Telegraf runs on every host in the cluster. It is designed around a pluggable architecture. Several custom plugins written especially for DC/OS provide metrics on the performance of DC/OS workloads and DC/OS itself.

Application metrics and custom metrics emitted by DC/OS applications are collected via statsd. A dedicated statsd server is started for each new task. Any metrics received by the statsd server are tagged with the task name and its service name. The address of the server is provided via environment variables (STATSD_UDP_HOST and STATSD_UDP_PORT).

For more informaiton about the list of metrics that are automatically collected by DC/OS, read Metrics Reference documentation.

Upgrading from 1.11

DC/OS 1.12 includes an updated statsd server implementation for application metrics. This fixes an issue with the statsd server implementation in 1.11, which treated all application metrics as gauges, regardless of statsd type.

Dashboards and alerts that rely on counters, histograms or sets will behave differently in 1.12 than in 1.11 as follows:

  • Gauges report the last received value. There is no change from 1.11 functionality.
  • Counters report the sum of all received values. In 1.11, counters reported the last received value.
  • Histograms and timers report _sum, _min and _max metrics. In 1.11, histograms reported the last received value.
  • Sets report the sum of all unique values. In 1.11, sets reported the last received value.

Additionally, multi-packet metrics and sampling are now available. In 1.11, they were not implemented and resulted in missing metrics.


Use the following troubleshooting guidelines to resolve errors:

  • Metrics about Telegraf’s own performance may be collected by enabling the inputs.internal plugin.
  • Telegraf runs as a systemd unit. The status of systemd unit may be examined via systemctl status dcos-telegraf.
  • Logs are available from journald via journalctl -u dcos-telegraf.