This page describes how to start your journey into observability with OpenTelemetry.
You can use OTel (OpenTelemetry) to gather metrics of your APIs to gain insights of the usage and more.
OpenTelemetry (OTel) is an open-source observability framework that allows you to collect, process, and export telemetry data from applications and infrastructure to gain insights into system performance and behavior.
In OpenTelemetry, metrics and labels are two different concepts used for collecting and organizing observability data.
They serve different purposes and are often used in distinct parts of the monitoring and tracing process.
Metrics are used to measure and record quantitative data about the performance and behavior of an application or system.
Metrics are typically aggregated over time, allowing you to understand trends and patterns in your application's performance.
Common examples of metrics include counters (for example, the number of requests processed) and gauges (for example, the current memory usage).
Metrics are typically associated with specific instruments (for example, a counter instrument for counting requests) and are used to monitor the system's health and performance.
Metrics do not provide detailed information about individual requests or transactions. Instead, they provide aggregated information about the overall system or application.
You can find a list with all available metrics on our metrics overview.
Labels, also known as tags or dimensions, are key-value pairs that provide context to metrics or traces.
Labels are used to add additional information or metadata to your metrics and traces, allowing you to segment and filter data to gain more insights.
They are especially valuable when you want to understand how metrics or traces vary across different dimensions, such as by geographic region, customer ID, or HTTP status code.
Labels can be attached to metrics and traces to provide context and help you identify the factors contributing to specific behavior or performance characteristics.
For example, you might use labels to differentiate between different types of requests or to identify the source of an error in a trace.
You can find a list with all available labels on our label overview section.
The OpenTelemetry Collector is a convenient place to transform data before sending it to a vendor or other systems. This is frequently done for data quality, governance, cost, and security reasons.
The transform processor modifies telemetry based on configuration. The transform processor allows end-users to specify transformations on metrics, logs, and traces using the OpenTelemetry Transformation Language.
- Learn more about metrics