Introduction to Grafana Agent
Grafana Agent is a vendor-neutral, batteries-included telemetry collector. It is designed to be flexible, performant, and compatible with multiple ecosystems such as Prometheus and OpenTelemetry.
Grafana Agent is available in three different variants:
- Static mode: The default, original variant of Grafana Agent.
- Static mode Kubernetes operator: Variant which manages agents running in Static mode.
- Flow mode: The newer, more flexible re-imagining variant of Grafana Agent.
|Static mode Kubernetes operator||Beta|
Choose which variant of Grafana Agent to run
NOTE: You do not have to pick just one variant; it is possible to mix-and-match installations of Grafana Agent.
Static mode is the original variant of Grafana Agent, first introduced on March 3, 2020. Static mode is the most mature variant of Grafana Agent.
You should run Static mode when:
Maturity: You need to use the most mature version of Grafana Agent.
Grafana Cloud integrations: You need to use Grafana Agent with Grafana Cloud integrations.
Static mode Kubernetes operator
The Static mode Kubernetes operator is a variant of Grafana Agent first introduced on June 17, 2021. It is currently in beta.
The Static mode Kubernetes operator was introduced for compatibility with Prometheus Operator, allowing static mode to support resources from Prometheus Operator, such as ServiceMonitors, PodMonitors, and Probes.
You should run the Static mode Kubernetes operator when:
- Prometheus Operator compatibility: You need to be able to consume ServiceMonitors, PodMonitors, and Probes from the Prometheus Operator project for collecting Prometheus metrics.
Flow mode is a stable variant of Grafana Agent first introduced on September 29, 2022.
Flow mode was introduced as a re-imagining of Grafana Agent with a focus on vendor neutrality, ease-of-use, improved debuggability, and ability to adapt to the needs of power users by adopting a configuration-as-code model.
Flow mode is considered to be the future of the Grafana Agent project. Eventually, all functionality of Static mode and the Static mode Kubernetes operator will be added into Flow mode.
You should run Flow mode when:
You need functionality unique to Flow mode:
Debuggability: You need to more easily debug configuration issues using a UI.
Full OpenTelemetry support: Support for collecting OpenTelemetry metrics, logs, and traces.
PrometheusRule support: Support for the PrometheusRule resource from the Prometheus Operator project for configuring Grafana Mimir.
Ecosystem transformation: You need to be able to convert Prometheus and Loki pipelines to and from OpenTelmetry Collector pipelines.
Grafana Pyroscope support: Support for collecting profiles for Grafana Pyroscope.
BoringCrypto is an EXPERIMENTAL feature for building Grafana Agent binaries and images with BoringCrypto enabled. Builds and Docker images for Linux arm64/amd64 are made available.