Training Videos Observability

Intro to o11y Topic 6: Looking at Your First Data in Honeycomb


In this video, Developer Advocate Jessica Kerr explains how to start looking at your first data in Honeycomb. From the home screen, we can see high-level monitoring graphs, check on the raw data coming in, and find some traces.

Note: This video assumes you have already connected your app to Honeycomb. Jessica Kerr is using a sample app called Sequence of Numbers. If you would like to download the app and follow along, you can do so using the process from Intro to o11y Topic 3. If you need help connecting your app to Honeycomb, see Intro to o11y Topic 4.


Jessica Kerr [Developer Advocate|Honeycomb]:

When I’m first looking at my data in Honeycomb, my favorite place to start is the home screen. I got here by clicking on this logo in the top left. First, I check that I’m in the correct dataset, the one my app is configured to send to. This looks good. Then I take a look at the duration of these graphs. We’re looking at the last eight hours. I can change that to the last two hours or the last 10 minutes, wherever the action is.

On this page, we get some very high-level graphs: the kind of things you see in application performance monitoring tools, also known as APM. This first one has a count of requests coming in. We can see that there’s something. 

This next one is about how slow those requests are. We’ll learn more about a heatmap later. The last one is looking at errors. As best we can tell, based on common error fields, this app has not suffered any errors in the last 10 minutes. This page gives me the highest level overview of my data, and it can also give me the lowest level view.

I scroll down to the bottom of the page and choose recent events. This gives me examples of the most recent telemetry data sent by my application. I can click one of these and see the whole event that Honeycomb received. We call these wide events because they can have as many attributes as you care to send. This one has a few dozen, but it could be hundreds.

This top one here is duration in milliseconds. This event represents 0.28 milliseconds of work. Here’s a bunch of HTTP stuff, including the URL, that looks useful. Oh, It was sent by the open telemetry library that auto instruments HTTP requests. That library provided the instrumentation code that constructed this telemetry data to send to Honeycomb.

And here are the trace fields that Honeycomb can use to put this event in context. Mmm, tasty context! To see that context, let’s go one level up and look at a trace. The recent traces tab has some for me. This one came in five minutes ago, specifically at 17:27. Its name is get/fib. It has 14 spans of some assortment. What does it look like? I’ll click on this view trace button over here on the left. Stuff! What is all this stuff? Let’s answer that in the next video.