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Configure Kubernetes Monitoring with Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart

Note

Configuration with the Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart is recommended for use. However, you can also configure with Grafana Agent or Grafana Agent Operator manually.

When you configure with Grafana Kubernetes Helm chart and select all collection choices, the following items install as part of installation and configuration:

  • Grafana Agent Flow mode: Collects metrics, Pod logs, traces, and Kubernetes events. If you choose to enable traces, Grafana Agent becomes configured to receive traces and forwards them to Grafana Cloud Traces.
  • kube-state-metrics Helm chart: Deploys a kube-state-metrics (KSM) Deployment and Service, along with some other access control objects.
  • Node Exporter
  • OpenCost

Note

You can choose to switch off the collection of metrics, logs, events, traces, or costs during the configuration process.

The Agent scrapes the following targets by default:

The default ConfigMap that results from the configuration process creates allowlists. These allowlists are configured to keep a subset of metrics used by the Kubernetes Monitoring dashboards, alerts, and recording rules. You can optionally do any of these with an allowlist:

  • Modify it.
  • Replace it with a denylist by using the drop directive.
  • Omit it entirely.

To learn more about managing metrics, refer to:

For additional detail about:

Before you begin

To deploy Kubernetes Monitoring with Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart, you need:

  • The Admin role to install dashboards and alerts
  • A Kubernetes Cluster, environment, or fleet you want to monitor
  • The kubectl and Helm command-line tools
  • Appropriate versions of items related to:
    • kube-state-metrics: Uses client-go to communicate with Clusters. For Kubernetes client-go version compatibility and any other related details, refer to kube-state-metrics.
    • OpenCost: Requires Kubernetes 1.8+ clusters.

Configuration process

The Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart configuration includes the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Kubernetes Monitoring.
  2. Begin sending data.
  3. Connect your data sources for metrics and logs.
  4. Install dashboards and alert rules.
  5. Configure with Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart to begin scraping your data.
  6. Install integrations.

Navigate to your stack and choose Kubernetes Monitoring.

Send data

Click the Start sending data button.

Introductory page for Kubernetes Monitoring configuration with buttons for sending data or trying it out in Grafana play
Start sending data button

Kubernetes Monitoring displays the Configuration menu item in the Settings tab.

Connect data sources

In the Data sources section of the Settings tab, select the data sources you want for Kubernetes Monitoring.

Drop-down menus for Prometheus data source and Loki data source
Data sources menu

Install dashboards and alert rules

Within the Dashboards, alert rules, and recording rules section, click Install dashboards and alert rules to install the out-of-the-box dashboards and alert rules.

Configure with Grafana Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart

Click the Cluster configuration tab, and complete each section of the instructions.

Prerequisites

Make sure you have met the prerequisites required for these configuration steps.

Select features and enter Cluster information

  1. In the Cluster name box, enter the name of your Cluster.

  2. In the Namespace box, replace default with the namespace that you want to monitor in your Cluster.

  3. Select the platform you are using (for example, Kubernetes, OpenShift, EKS on Fargate, and so on).

    Section of quick configuration to select features, including platform and what to collect
    Options for platforms and data

  4. Switch on or off the data you want to collect, including:

  • Metrics
  • Cost metrics
  • Cluster events
  • Pod logs
  • Traces, if you have an application that is generating traces you want to pull

Use a Grafana.com Access Policy Token

You can create a new access policy token or use an existing token. Refer to Grafana Cloud Access Policies for more information.

To use an existing token:

  1. Click Use an existing token.

  2. Paste the token into the Access policy token name box.

To create a new token:

  1. Click Create a new token.

  2. In the box for Access Policy Token name, enter the name of your token.

  3. In the expiration date box, select an option for the expiration date.

    The permission scope for the token displays.

    Options for configuration, including expiration date
    Options for configuration, including expiration date

  4. Click Create token.

    The token generates and appears in the token box. This token is automatically copied into the ConfigMap file.

  5. Click the copy icon in the token box to copy the token. Make sure to save it in a secure place. It will not be shown again.

Deploy monitoring resources on the Cluster

Deploy the Kubernetes Monitoring Helm chart to the Cluster.

  1. Copy the command.

  2. Paste and run it in your terminal.

Configure traces

If you chose to include traces in the Select features and enter cluster information section, a list of endpoints show that you can use to configure the OTLP address of your applications that generate traces.

Done

Click the Metrics status tab to view the status of data collection. Your data becomes populated as the system components begin scraping and sending data to Grafana Cloud. This view shows the health of the different sources of metrics, Pod logs, and Cluster events, as well as any applicable version numbers.

Descriptions and statuses for each item chosen to be configured and whether they are online
Metrics status tab

If any box shows “Offline”, it can be any of the following:

  • The feature was not selected during Cluster configuration.
  • The system is not running correctly.
  • The Grafana Agent was not able to gather data correctly.

Install any integrations

You can use Grafana integrations to monitor the health and status of services and applications running in your Kubernetes clusters.

To install a Kubernetes integration to begin scraping metrics:

  1. Click the Integrations tab.

  2. Select the integration for the service you want to monitor.

  3. Select your preferred deployment method (Helm Chart, Agent, or Agent Operator).

  4. Add the provided code snippet to Grafana Agent’s ConfigMap, or deploy the provided Operator Object. Make sure to replace any templated fields.

  5. Click Install integration. Installed integrations display a green checkmark on their tile.

If you want to use an integration not currently listed on the page, you can use embedded Agent exporters and integrations by configuring them manually. To learn how, refer to integrations_config.