August 31, 2014

From zero to full visibility of MySQL in 3 minutes with Percona Cloud Tools

First, I would like to invite you to my webinar, “Monitoring All (Yes, All!) MySQL Metrics with Percona Cloud Tools,” on Wednesday, June 25 at 10 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, where I will talk on the
new features in Percona Cloud Tools, including monitoring capabilities.

In this post I’d like to show the cool and interesting things we’ve implemented in Percona Cloud Tools, including the recently released agent that Daniel also talks about here in this post.

Basically our agent allows users to collect ALL MySQL metrics plus important environment’s metrics, like CPU, memory, IO stats.

And when I talk all MySQL it is:

  • Metrics from SHOW GLOBAL STATUS (I counted 571 entries on my Percona Server 5.6 with TokuDB)
  • Metrics from INFORMATION_SCHEMA.INNODB_METRICS ( 214 entries)
  • Data from SHOW GLOBAL VARIABLES ( 522 entries).

So you see we collect more than 1000 points. We collect data every second, aggregate per minute and it becomes available with a 1-minute resolution, but with descriptive stats like min, max, avg, median, 5%-percentile, 95%-percentile of collected data. We found this represents data better than 1-sec points, which can be a quite noisy.

So for example this is how a chart with MySQL command counters looks like:
Image 12

If you do not have MySQL, in fact, you can just monitor your OS without MySQL if you need to.
For example CPU stats
Image 9

Please note you can see a value at any point in the past. We even can go to week range and see values several days ago
Image 10
You can choose a custom timerange back to hours, days, weeks, etc with zoom-in capabilities.

Why do we need avg, min, max stats? Let see Peter’s graph from a server with periodical stalls.
image

Averaging metric smooths the line, and really hides the problem, while with min we are able to see that throughput drops to zero, that means that during some seconds the server did not execute any queries (which is essentially stalls)

More about the agent.

Our percona-agent is open source. This is our way of sharing our Go knowledge, and also you can check that we do not do anything insane on your server (like bitcoin mining or black magic regression modeling math).

You can see source code here https://github.com/percona/percona-agent:
and pre-compiled binaries are available from our website:

What is also interesting about our technology is that we use a permanent connection (based on WebSockets technology, so it looks like a connection to web browser) between an agent and our servers. This way
we support a bi-directional real-time communication between https://cloud.percona.com/ and an agent.

That means you can manage an agent and receive data updates at the same time. Pretty cool, yeah?

Our agent comes with “minimal efforts” in mind.

  • 1. There is minimal efforts to install agent. Basically it takes 3-minutes
    to download binaries, install them, and start seeing real-time updates of charts with MySQL metrics.
  • 2. Agent comes with self-update capabilities (not activated at this moment). Later you will need
    to worry if there is new version of agent is available, it will updated itself. We thought if Android Apps can do that, why can’t we?
  • 3. Minimal efforts for a maintenance: you do not need to install a dedicated server, configure and maintain database, care about its backups and availability. Basically no more hassle with Cacti configuration and managing a storage for it.

The goal of Percona Cloud Tools is to provide you with FULL visibility on what’s going on inside your system right now or at some point in the past, and to gain additional insights on your database server.

Our tools are useful not only if you have hundreds of database servers to manage, but pretty much for single installations, too. Well, of course, we always can run mysql -e "SHOW GLOBAL STATUS" , vmstat 10 ; iostat -dxm 10 manually when we need to troubleshoot something, but is it not useful to collect all this data automatically and be able to go to any point in the past?

You can register for the Beta right now. No invitation is needed, but it may take sometime for us to activate your account, we see a quite a demand right now and we need to prime our servers.

And what’s important, eventually our tools will require a payment, but we will always provide a free level, which will be useful enough for small accounts (this is not a bait-and-switch 30-days trial approach).

About Vadim Tkachenko

Vadim leads Percona's development group, which produces Percona Clould Tools, the Percona Server, Percona XraDB Cluster and Percona XtraBackup. He is an expert in solid-state storage, and has helped many hardware and software providers succeed in the MySQL market.

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