April 19, 2017 / Sonja Schweigert
During KubeCon, our Director of Software Engineering Tom Wilkie gave a presentation called “Behind the Iron Curtain: Getting Metrics From the Browser into Prometheus.”
Previously, Prometheus has been pigeon-holed as a monitoring technology for the backend. With the rise of single-page apps, gathering metrics has become increasingly important.
Since Tom loves monitoring and wants developers to use the same tools whether they’re working on the front or backend, he and Software Engineer Jordan Pellizzari decided to use Prometheus to track UI metrics and errors.
Their goal was to create an alert to tell the end user exactly what is broken on the front end as opposed to manually diagnosing an issue and then fixing it. Ideally, you should never find out about a bug or a blank screen from the frontend.
So, Tom and Jordan got this data into Prometheus. Doing that, they were able to reuse the dashboarding and alerting options that everyone loves in Prometheus for tracking UI errors via alerts. Check out Jordan’s GitHub repo here .
The end result
So what failure modes can this monitor?
- Client server latency
- We care a lot about high server client latency, which is something we can’t measure on backend
In the background, the client pushes to the server every 15 seconds. After every push, the counter is reset to 0, so the counters act more like gauges. Our objective is to not overload the server with lots of pushes.
Watch the full video below to see Tom use Weave Cloud to demonstrate this process.
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