Grafana Labs’ Latest Solutions Expand its Open Source Observability Stack

Grafana Labs, providers of open source technology for dashboards and visualization, is unveiling their latest open source projects to improve upon its expanding observability stack: Grafana Phlare, a horizontally scalable continuous profiling database, and Grafana Faro, a web SDK facilitating frontend application observability.

Natively integratable with Grafana, Phlare’s continuous profiling sheds light on resource expenditure in your program, ultimately improving performance and cost. The solution collects resource usage data at regular intervals throughout an entire compute infrastructure, then stores as queryable time series data for enhanced analytics.

“Profiling is something you’re using for optimization, not for firefighting. You need to have your services in a state where you’re stable enough for users,” said Richard Hartmann, director of community at Grafana. “Why we developed these projects in this order—metrics first, then logs, the traces, and now continuous profiling—is because the industry at large is now at a place where continuous profiling is ready for the mainstage.”

Phlare builds on Grafana’s horizontally scalable, object-storage approach, broadening its capability to profiling data. Profiling data can be ingested alongside other insights, including various metrics, logs, traces, and disparate data.

“Its ability to store continuous profiles in a very efficient manner, and then query them to find performance bottlenecks,” explained Hartmann. “It allows developers to write more efficient code, directly translating to savings in your cloud bill or in running on fewer machines.”

Grafana Faro is a configurable Java script web SDK dedicated to frontend application health, featuring automatic instrumentation for capture and a pre-configured tracing system based on OpenTelemetry.

“The main feature of Faro is integrating it with a web application to immediately start extracting data about performance, any errors or hold-ups in the application running on the end user’s machine,” said Hartmann. “It’s low-effort. You add it and things start happening.”

Faro instruments web applications to capture observability signals automatically, which then can be compared to backend and infrastructure data within the LGTM (Loki, Grafana, Temp, Mimir) stack. The SDK is now in private beta, available to all Grafana Cloud users.

Grafana’s bundle of solutions highlights compatibility and accessibility. They meet the end user where they are—even if that’s with a competing vendor, according to the company.

“We deliberately have an approach where anyone we can support on a technical level, we are more than willing and more than happy to support, even if they are our direct competitors,” remarked Hartmann. “We make it easy for you to interoperate with anything else you have in your stack. At Grafana, we strongly believe that the end users should have one platform that works with everything.”

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