Monitor Kubernetes infrastructure and applications. Scale Kubernetes workloads based on metrics in Tanzu Observability (formerly known as VMware Aria Operations for Applications).

Monitor your Kubernetes environment at the infrastructure level and at the applications level with our Kubernetes Metrics Collector.

  • Monitor Kubernetes infrastructure metrics (containers, pods, etc.) from our dashboards – and create alerts from those dashboards.
  • Automatically collect metrics from applications and workloads using built-in plug-ins such as Prometheus, Telegraf, etc.

Scale your Kubernetes environment based on the metrics sent to Tanzu Observability with our Horizontal Pod Autoscaler Adapter.


The following videos get you started.

Observability for Kubernetes Operator (August 2022)

This video is about recent changes to the install process and shows a demo. You can then get started by going to the following GitHub pages:

You can also watch the video here video camera icon.

Observability and Kubernetes (January 2020)

This video includes some details on the one-click install of the Kubernetes Metrics Collector.

You can also watch the video here video camera icon.

Monitor and Scale Kubernetes (August 2019)

This video gives you the big picture. It explains the different ways of monitoring Kubernetes with Tanzu Observability.

You can also watch the video here video camera icon.

Send Data from Your Kubernetes Environment

You can send data to our service in several ways:

  • Direct: Use our Kubernetes Metrics Collector to send data directly from your Kubernetes cluster to the Wavefront proxy. The Collector can collect metrics from Prometheus compatible applications and support a number of Telegraf plugins.

  • Prometheus: If you are already using Prometheus to view your data and want to monitor your Kubernetes data using our service, send data to the Kubernetes Metrics Collector.

The diagram shows the different components and ways you can send data from your Kubernetes environment. The details are explained above.

To use our Kubernetes Metrics Collector, you must set up our Kubernetes integration. Use one of the following options:

  • [Recommended] Directly using the user interface.

    The new Observability for Kubernetes Operator supports deploying the Collector and the Wavefront proxy in Kubernetes with a few clicks.

    1. Log in to your product instance and click Integrations on the toolbar.
    2. In the Featured section, click the Kubernetes integration tile.
    3. On the Setup tab, click Add Integration.
    4. Set up the integration in a Kubernetes cluster or OpenShift. You can preview the setup steps here.

    A screenshot of the deployment options.

  • Follow the guidelines given in the Bitnami guide.

Monitor Kubernetes

Our Kubernetes Metrics Collector supports monitoring for your Kubernetes infrastructure at all levels of the stack. See the list of metrics collected by the Kubernetes Metrics Collector.

  • Set up the Kubernetes Collector to have much of the monitoring happen automatically.
  • Fine-tune and customize the solution with configuration options available in the Tanzu Observability Kubernetes Metrics Collector.

Infrastructure Monitoring

Our Kubernetes Metrics Collector collects metrics to give comprehensive insight into all layers of your Kubernetes environment, such as nodes, pods, services, and config maps.

Depending on the selected setup, metrics are sent to the Wavefront proxy and from there to our service. It’s possible to send metrics using direct ingestion, but the Wavefront proxy is preferred for most cases.

kubernetes core monitoring

The collector runs as a DaemonSet for high scalability and supports leader election for monitoring cluster-level resources.

Host-Level Monitoring

The Kubernetes Metrics Collector supports automatic monitoring of host-level metrics and host-level systemd metrics. When you set up the collector, it auto-discovers pods and services in your environment and starts collecting host-level metrics.

You can filter the metrics before they are reported to our service.

Application Monitoring

Our Kubernetes Metrics Collector automatically starts collecting metrics from many commonly used applications:

  • The collector auto discovers endpoints using labels. See Auto Discovery.
  • The collector also scrapes Prometheus metric endpoints such as API server, etcd, and NGINX.

You can also configure the Collector to collect data from Telegraf application sources, such as Redis, RabbitMQ. etc., using the file.

The following diagram illustrates this:

Kubernetes application monitoring

Visualize Kubernetes Data

One you set up the Kubernetes integration, you can use the out-of-the-box dashboards. To access these dashboards, you need to:

  1. Log in to your product instance and click Integrations on the toolbar.
  2. Search for Kubernetes and click the Kubernetes integration tile.
  3. Click the Dashboards tab.

This image shows the out-of-the box dashboards for Kubernetes: Kubernetes Summary dashboard, Kubernetes Clusters dashboard, Kubernetes Nodes dashboard, Kubernetes Pods dashboard, Kubernetes Containers dashboard, Kubernetes Namespaces dashboard, and Kubernetes Collector Metrics dashboard

The Kubernetes Status dashboard gives details about the health of your integration. The Kubernetes Summary dashboard gives details on the health of your infrastructure and workloads. You can drill down from this dashboard and identify potential hotspots.

The out-of-the-box dashboards:

Dashboard Description
Kubernetes Status Details on the use of the Kubernetes Integration. a screenshot of the Kubernetes status dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Workloads Troubleshooting Monitor and troubleshoot the Kubernetes workloads.
Kubernetes Summary Detailed health of your infrastructure and workloads. a screenshot of the Kubernetes summary dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Clusters Detailed health of your clusters and their nodes, namespaces, pods, and containers. a screenshot of the Kubernetes cluster dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Nodes Detailed health of your nodes. a screenshot of the Kubernetes nodes dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Pods Detailed health of your pods broken down by node and namespace. a screenshot of the Kubernetes pods dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Containers Detailed health of your containers broken down by namespace, node, and pod. a screenshot of the Kubernetes container dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Namespaces Details of your pods or containers broken down by namespace. a screenshot of the Kubernetes namespaces dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Metrics Collector Troubleshooting Internal stats of the Kubernetes Metrics Collector. a screenshot of the Kubernetes collector metrics dashboard with charts.
Kubernetes Control Plane Details on the Kubernetes control plane components. a screenshot of the Kubernetes control plane dashboard with charts.

Scale Kubernetes

The default Kubernetes infrastructure can include a Horizontal Pod Autoscaler, which can automatically scale the number of pods. The Horizontal Pod Autoscaler gets CPU and memory information from the Kubernetes Metrics Server by default, and the Horizontal Pod Autoscaler uses that information.

Our Horizontal Pod Autoscaler Adapter allows you to scale based on any metric that it knows about.

For example, you can scale based on networking or disk metrics, or any application metrics that are available to Tanzu Observability. The Autoscaler Adapter sends the recommendation to the Horizontal Pod Autoscaler, and the Kubernetes environment is kept healthy as a result.

Kubernetes scaling diagram

Next Steps