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Analyze and compare hosts

Get a metrics-driven view of your hosts backed by an easy-to-use interface called Lens.

Beta feature

This functionality is in beta and is subject to change. The design and code is less mature than official generally available features and is being provided as-is with no warranties. Beta features are not subject to the support service level agreement of official generally available features.

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The Hosts page provides a metrics-driven view of your infrastructure backed by an easy-to-use interface called Lens. On the Hosts page, you can view health and performance metrics to help you quickly:

  • Analyze and compare hosts without having to build new dashboards.
  • Identify which hosts trigger the most alerts.
  • Troubleshoot and resolve issues quickly.
  • View historical data to rule out false alerts and identify root causes.
  • Filter and search the data to focus on the hosts you care about the most.

To access the Hosts page, in your Observability project, go to InfrastructureHosts.

To learn more about the metrics shown on this page, refer to the Metrics reference documentation.

Don't see any metrics?

If you haven't added data yet, click Add data to search for and install an Elastic integration.

Need help getting started? Follow the steps in Get started with system metrics.

The Hosts page provides several ways to view host metrics:

  • Overview tiles show the number of hosts returned by your search plus averages of key metrics, including CPU usage, memory usage, and throughput.

  • The Host limit controls the maximum number of hosts shown on the page. The default is 50, which means the page shows data for the top 50 hosts based on the most recent timestamps. You can increase the host limit to see data for more hosts, but doing so may impact query performance.

  • The Hosts table shows a breakdown of metrics for each host. You may need to page through the list or change the number of rows displayed on each page to see all of your hosts.

  • Each host name is an active link to a host details page, which includes metrics, host metadata, alerts, processes, logs, and anomalies. You can optionally open the host details in an overlay.

  • Table columns are sortable, but note that the sorting behavior is applied to the already returned data set.

  • The tabs at the bottom of the page show an overview of the metrics, logs, and alerts for all hosts returned by your search.

Filter the Hosts view

The Hosts page provides several mechanisms for filtering the data on the page:

  • Enter a search query using Kibana Query Language to show metrics that match your search criteria. For example, to see metrics for hosts running on linux, enter host.os.type : "linux". Otherwise you’ll see metrics for all your monitored hosts (up to the number of hosts specified by the host limit).

  • Select additional criteria to filter the view:

    • In the Operating System list, select one or more operating systems to include (or exclude) metrics for hosts running the selected operating systems.

    • In the Cloud Provider list, select one or more cloud providers to include (or exclude) metrics for hosts running on the selected cloud providers.

    • In the Service Name list, select one or more service names to include (or exclude) metrics for the hosts running the selected services. Services must be instrumented by APM to be filterable. This filter is useful for comparing different hosts to determine whether a problem lies with a service or the host that it is running on.

    Tip

    Filtered results are sorted by document count. Document count is the number of events received by Elastic for the hosts that match your filter criteria.

  • Change the date range in the time filter, or click and drag on a visualization to change the date range.

  • Within a visualization, click a point on a line and apply filters to set other visualizations on the page to the same time and/or host.

View metrics

On the Metrics tab of the Hosts page, view metrics trending over time, including normalized load, CPU usage, memory usage, network inbound, network outbound, disk read IOPS, and disk write IOPS. Place your cursor over a line to view metrics at a specific point in time.

To see metrics for a specific host, refer to View host details.

Inspect and download metrics

You can access a text-based view of the data underlying your metrics visualizations and optionally download the data to a comma-separated (CSV) file.

Hover your cursor over a visualization, then in the upper-right corner, click the ellipsis icon to inspect the data.

In the flyout, click Download CSV to download formatted or raw data to a CSV file.

Click View: Data and notice that you can change the view to Requests to explore the request used to fetch the data and the response returned from Elasticsearch. On the Request tab, click links to further inspect and analyze the request in the Dev Console or Search Profiler.

Open in Lens

Metrics visualizations are powered by Lens, meaning you can continue your analysis in Lens if you require more flexibility. Hover your cursor over a visualization, then click the ellipsis icon in the upper-right corner to open the visualization in Lens.

In Lens, you can examine all the fields and formulas used to create the visualization, make modifications to the visualization, and save your changes.

For more information about using Lens, refer to the Kibana documentation about Lens.

View logs

On the Logs tab of the Hosts page, view logs for the systems you are monitoring and search for specific log entries. This view shows logs for all of the hosts returned by the current query.

To see logs for a specific host, refer to View host details.

View alerts

On the Alerts tab of the Hosts page, view active alerts to pinpoint problems. Use this view to figure out which hosts triggered alerts and identify root causes. This view shows alerts for all of the hosts returned by the current query.

From the Actions menu, you can choose to:

  • Add the alert to a new or existing case.
  • View rule details.
  • View alert details.

To see alerts for a specific host, refer to View host details.

View host details

Without leaving the Hosts page, you can view enhanced metrics relating to each host running in your infrastructure. In the list of hosts, find the host you want to monitor, then click the Toggle dialog with details icon

to display the host details overlay.

Tip

To expand the overlay and view more detail, click Open as page in the upper-right corner.

The host details overlay contains the following tabs:

The Overview tab displays metrics about the selected host, including CPU usage, normalized load, memory usage, disk usage, network traffic, and the log rate.

Change the time range to view metrics over a specific period of time.

Hover over a specific time period on a chart to compare the various metrics at that given time.

The Metadata tab lists all the meta information relating to the host, including host, cloud, and agent information.

This information can help when investigating events—for example, when filtering by operating system or architecture.

The Processes tab lists the total number of processes (system.process.summary.total) running on the host, along with the total number of processes in these various states:

  • Running (system.process.summary.running)
  • Sleeping (system.process.summary.sleeping)
  • Stopped (system.process.summary.stopped)
  • Idle (system.process.summary.idle)
  • Dead (system.process.summary.dead)
  • Zombie (system.process.summary.zombie)
  • Unknown (system.process.summary.unknown)

The processes listed in the Top processes table are based on an aggregation of the top CPU and the top memory consuming processes. The number of top processes is controlled by process.include_top_n.by_cpu and process.include_top_n.by_memory.

Command
Full command line that started the process, including the absolute path to the executable, and all the arguments (system.process.cmdline).
PID
Process id (process.pid).
User
User name (user.name).
CPU
The percentage of CPU time spent by the process since the last event (system.process.cpu.total.pct).
Time
The time the process started (system.process.cpu.start_time).
Memory
The percentage of memory (system.process.memory.rss.pct) the process occupied in main memory (RAM).
State
The current state of the process and the total number of processes (system.process.state). Expected values are: running, sleeping, dead, stopped, idle, zombie, and unknown.

The Logs tab displays logs relating to the host that you have selected. By default, the logs tab displays the following columns.

Timestamp
The timestamp of the log entry from the timestamp field.
Message
The message extracted from the document. The content of this field depends on the type of log message. If no special log message type is detected, the Elastic Common Schema (ECS) base field, message, is used.

To view the logs in the Logs app for a detailed analysis, click Open in Logs.

The Anomalies table displays a list of each single metric anomaly detection job for the specific host. By default, anomaly jobs are sorted by time, showing the most recent jobs first.

Along with the name of each anomaly job, detected anomalies with a severity score equal to 50 or higher are listed. These scores represent a severity of "warning" or higher in the selected time period. The summary value represents the increase between the actual value and the expected ("typical") value of the host metric in the anomaly record result.

To drill down and analyze the metric anomaly, select ActionsOpen in Anomaly Explorer. You can also select ActionsShow in Inventory to view the host Inventory page, filtered by the specific metric.

Note

These metrics are also available when viewing hosts on the Inventory page.

Why am I seeing dashed lines in charts?

There are a few reasons why you may see dashed lines in your charts.

The chart interval is too short

In this example, the data emission rate is lower than the Lens chart interval. A dashed line connects the known data points to make it easier to visualize trends in the data.

The chart interval is automatically set depending on the selected time duration. To fix this problem, change the selected time range at the top of the page.

Tip

Want to dig in further while maintaining the selected time duration? Hover over the chart you're interested in and select OptionsOpen in Lens. Once in Lens, you can adjust the chart interval temporarily. Note that this change is not persisted in the Hosts view.

Data is missing

A solid line indicates that the chart interval is set appropriately for the data transmission rate. In this example, a solid line turns into a dashed line—indicating missing data. You may want to investigate this time period to determine if there is an outage or issue.

The chart interval is too short and data is missing

In the example shown in the screenshot, the data emission rate is lower than the Lens chart interval and there is missing data.

This missing data can be hard to spot at first glance. The green boxes outline regular data emissions, while the missing data is outlined in pink. Similar to the above scenario, you may want to investigate the time period with the missing data to determine if there is an outage or issue.

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