Understand Your Prometheus Exporters with Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM)

Prometheus Exporters 2 small

In this blog post, I will look at the new dashboards in Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) for Prometheus exporters.

Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) uses Prometheus exporters to capture metrics data from the system it monitors. Those Prometheus exporters are an important part of your monitoring infrastructure, and understanding their performance and other operational details is critical for well-implemented monitoring.    

To help you with this we’ve added a number of new dashboards to Percona Monitoring and Management.

The Prometheus Exporters Overview dashboard provides a high-level overview of your installed Prometheus exporter infrastructure:

Prometheus Exporters

The summary shows you how many hosts are monitored and how many exporters you have running, as well as how much CPU and memory they are using.

Note that the CPU usage shown in this graph is only the CPU usage of the exporter itself. It does not include the additional resource usage that is required to produce metrics by the application or operating system.

Next, we have an overview of resource usage by the host:  

Prometheus Exporters 2

Prometheus Exporters 3

These graphs allow us to analyze the resource usage for different hosts, allowing us to clearly see if any of the hosts have unusually high CPU or memory usage by exporters.

You may notice some of the CPU usage reported on these graphs is very high. This is due to the fact that we use very high-resolution sampling and very underpowered instances for this demonstration environment. CPU usage numbers like this are not typical.

The next graphs show resource usage by the type of exporter:

Prometheus Exporters 4

Prometheus Exporters 5

In this case, we measure CPU usage in “CPU Cores” rather than as a percent – it is more meaningful. Otherwise, the same amount of actual resource usage by the exporter will look very different on a system with one core versus a system with 64 cores. Core usage numbers have a pretty stable baseline, though.

Then there is a list of your monitored hosts and the exporters they are running:

Prometheus Exporters 6

This shows your CPU usage and memory usage per host, as well as the number of exporters running and system details.

You can click on a host to get to the System Overview, or jump to Prometheus Exporter Status dashboard.

Prometheus Exporter Status dashboard allows you to investigate how specific exporters are performing for the given host. Each of the well-known exporters has its own row in this dashboard.

Node Exporter Status shows us the resource usage, uptime and performance of Node Exporter (the exporter responsible for capturing OS-level metrics):   

Prometheus Exporters 7

Prometheus Exporters 8

The “Collector Scrape Successful” shows which node_exporter collector category (which are modules that collect specific information) have returned data reliably. If you have anything but a flat line on “1” here, you need to check for problems.

“Collector Execution Time” shows how long on average it takes to execute your enabled collectors. This shows which collectors are generally more expensive to run (or if some of them are experiencing performance problems).

MySQL Exporter Status shows us how MySQL exporter is performing:

Prometheus Exporters 9

Additionally, in resource usage we see the rate of scrapes for High, Medium and Low resolution data.

Generally, you should see three flat lines here if everything is working well. This is not the case for this host, and we can see some scrapes are not successful – either failing to complete, or not triggered by Prometheus Server altogether (due to overload or connectivity issues).

Prometheus Exporters 10

These graphs provide information about MySQL Exporter Errors – permission errors and other issues. It also shows if MySQL Server was up during this time. There are also similar details reported for MongoDB and ProxySQL exporters if they are running on the host.

I hope these new dashboards help you to understand your Prometheus exporter performance better!


Collect PostgreSQL Metrics with Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM)

Collecting PostgreSQL Information using Percona Monitoring and Management

In this article, we’ll describe how to collect PostgreSQL metrics with Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM).

We designed Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) to be the best tool for MySQL and MongoDB performance investigation. At the same time, it’s built on mature opensource components: Prometheus’ time series database and Grafana. Starting from PMM 1.4.0. it’s possible to add monitoring for any service supported by Prometheus.


# install docker and docker-compose.
git clone https://github.com/ihanick/pmm-postgresql-demo.git
cd pmm-postgresql-demo
docker-compose build
docker-compose up

At this point, we are running exporter, PostgreSQL and the PMM server, but pmm-client on the PostgreSQL server isn’t configured.

docker-compose exec pg sh /root/initpmm.sh

Now we configured pmm client and added external exporter.

Let’s assume that you have executed commands above on the localhost. At this point we have several URLs:

We also need to create graphs for our new exporter. This could be done manually (import JSON), or you can import the existing dashboard Postgres_exporter published in the Grafana gallery by number in the catalog:

  1. Go to your PMM server web interface and press on the Grafana icon at the top left corner, then dashboards, the import.
  2. Copy and paste the dashboard ID from the Grafana site to “Grafana.com Dashboard” field, and press load.
  3. In the next dialog, choose Prometheus as a data source and continue.

PostgreSQL performance graphs can be seen at: http://localhost:8080/graph/dashboard/db/postgres_exporter?orgId=1

collect PostgreSQL metrics with Percona Monitoring and Management
PMM PostgreSQL postgres_exporter template


PMM-PostgreSQL Demo Under the Hood

To move this configuration to production, we need to understand how this demo works.

PMM Server

First of all, you need an existing PMM Server. You can find details on new server configuration at Deploying Percona Monitoring and Management.

In my demo I’m starting PMM without volumes, and all metrics dropped after using the docker-compose down command. Also, there is no need to use port 8080 for PMM, set it up with SSL support and password in production.

PostgreSQL Setup

I’m modifying the latest default PostgreSQL image to:

Of course, you can use a dedicated PostgreSQL server instead of one running inside a docker-compose sandbox. The only requirement is that the PMM server should be able to connect to this server.

User creation and permissions:

CREATE DATABASE postgres_exporter;
CREATE USER postgres_exporter PASSWORD 'password';
ALTER USER postgres_exporter SET SEARCH_PATH TO postgres_exporter,pg_catalog;
-- If deploying as non-superuser (for example in AWS RDS)
-- GRANT postgres_exporter TO :MASTER_USER;
CREATE SCHEMA postgres_exporter AUTHORIZATION postgres_exporter;
CREATE VIEW postgres_exporter.pg_stat_activity
  SELECT * from pg_catalog.pg_stat_activity;
GRANT SELECT ON postgres_exporter.pg_stat_activity TO postgres_exporter;
CREATE VIEW postgres_exporter.pg_stat_replication AS
  SELECT * from pg_catalog.pg_stat_replication;
GRANT SELECT ON postgres_exporter.pg_stat_replication TO postgres_exporter;

To simplify setup, you can use a superuser account and access pg_catalog directly. To improve security, allow this user to connect only from exporter host.

PMM Client Setup on PostgreSQL Host

You can obtain database-only statistics with just the external exporter, and you can use any host with pmm-client installed. Fortunately, you can also export Linux metrics from the database host.

After installing the pmm-client package, you still need to configure the system. We should point it to the PMM server and register the external exporter (and optionally add the linux:metrics exporter).

pmm-admin config --client-name pg1 --server pmm-server
pmm-admin add external:metrics postgresql pgexporter:9187
# optional
pmm-admin add linux:metrics
# other postgresql instances
pmm-admin add external:instances postgresql

It’s important to keep the external exporter job name as “postgresql”, since all existing templates check it. There is a bit of inconsistency here: the first postgresql server is added as external:metrics, but all further servers should be added as external:instances.

The reason is the first command creates the Prometheus job and first instance, and further servers can be added without job creation.

PMM 1.7.0 external:service

Starting from PMM 1.7.0 the setup simplified if exporter located on the same host as pmm-client:

pmm-admin config --client-name pg1 --server pmm-server
pmm-admin add external:service --service-port=9187 postgresql

pmm-admin add external:metrics or pmm-admin add external:instances are not required if you are running exporter on the same host as pmm-client.

Exporter Setup

Exporter is a simple HTTP/HTTPS server returning one page. The format is:

curl -si|grep pg_static
# HELP pg_static Version string as reported by postgres
# TYPE pg_static untyped
pg_static{short_version="10.1.0",version="PostgreSQL 10.1 on x86_64-pc-linux-gnu, compiled by gcc (Debian 6.3.0-18) 6.3.0 20170516, 64-bit"} 1

As you can see, it’s a self-describing set of counters and string values. The Prometheus time series database built-in to PMM connects to the web server and stores the results on disk. There are multiple exporters available for PostgreSQL. postgres_exporter is listed as a third-party on the official Prometheus website.

You can compile exporter by yourself, or run it inside docker container. This and many other exporters are written in Go and compiled as a static binary so that you can copy the executable from the host with same CPU architecture. For production setups, you probably will run exporter from a database host directly and start the service with systemd.

In order to check network configuration issues, login to pmm-server and use the curl command from above. Do not forget to replace with the appropriate host:port (use the same IP address or DNS name as the pmm-admin add command).

You configure postgres_exporter with a single environment variable:


Make sure that you provide the correct credentials, including the database name.

Run external exporter directly on database server

In order to simplify production setup, you can run exporter directly from the same server as you are using for running PostgreSQL.
This method allows you to use pmm-admin add external:service command recently added to PMM.

# Copy exporter binary from docker container to the local directory to skip build from sources
docker cp pmmpostgres_pgexporter_1:/postgres_exporter ./
# copy exporter binary to database host, use scp instead for existing database server.
docker cp postgres_exporter pmmpostgres_pg_1:/root/
# login to database server shell
docker exec -it pmmpostgres_pg_1 bash
# start exporter
DATA_SOURCE_NAME='postgresql://postgres_exporter:password@' ./postgres_exporter

Grafana Setup

In the demo, I’ve used Postgres_exporter dashboard. Use the same site and look for other PostgreSQL dashboards if you need more. The exporter provides many parameters, and not all of them are visualized in this dashboard.

For huge installations, you may find that filtering servers by “instance name” is not comfortable. Write your own JSON for the dashboard, or try to use one from demo repository. It’s the same as dashboard 3742, but uses the hostname for filtering and Prometheus job name in the legends.

All entries of instance=~"$instance" get replaced with instance=~"$host:.*".

The modification allows you to switch between PostgreSQL servers with host instead of “instance”, and see CPU and disk details for the current database server instead of the previously selected host.


This blog post on how to collect PostgreSQL metrics with Percona Monitoring and Management is not an official integration of PostgreSQL and PMM. I’ve tried to describe complex external exporters setup. Instead of PostgreSQL, you can use any other services and exporters with a similar setup, or even create your own exporter and instrument your application. It’s a great thing to see correlations between application activities and other system components like databases, web servers, etc.


Percona Monitoring and Management 1.7.0 (PMM) Is Now Available

Experimental Percona Monitoring and Management

Percona Monitoring and Management 1.7.0Percona announces the release of Percona Monitoring and Management 1.7.0. (PMM ) is a free and open-source platform for managing and monitoring MySQL and MongoDB performance. You can run PMM in your own environment for maximum security and reliability. It provides thorough time-based analysis for MySQL and MongoDB servers to ensure that your data works as efficiently as possible.

This release features improved support for external services, which enables a PMM Server to store and display metrics for any available Prometheus exporter. For example, you could deploy the postgres_exporter and use PMM’s external services feature to store PostgreSQL metrics in PMM. Immediately, you’ll see these new metrics in the Advanced Data Exploration dashboard. Then you could leverage many of the pre-developed PostgreSQL dashboards available on Grafana.com, and with a minimal amount of edits have a working PostgreSQL dashboard in PMM! Watch for an upcoming blog post to demonstrate a walk-through of this unlocked functionality.

New Percona Monitoring and Management 1.7.0 Features

  • PMM-1949: New dashboard: MySQL Amazon Aurora Metrics.
    Percona Monitoring and Management 1.7.0


  • PMM-1712: Improve external exporters to let you easily add data monitoring from an arbitrary Prometheus exporter you have running on your host.
  • PMM-1510: Rename swap in and swap out labels to be more specific and help clearly see the direction of data flow for Swap In and Swap Out. The new labels are Swap In (Reads) and Swap Out (Writes) accordingly.
  • PMM-1966: Remove Grafana from a list of exporters on the dashboard to eliminate confusion with existing Grafana in the list of exporters on the current version of the dashboard.
  • PMM-1974: Add the mongodb_up in the Exporter Status dashboard. The new graph is added to maintain consistency of information about exporters. This is done based on new metrics implemented in PMM-1586.

Bug fixes

  • PMM-1967: Inconsistent formulas in Prometheus dashboards.
  • PMM-1986: Signing out with HTTP auth enabled leaves the browser signed in.

Webinar Wednesday, January 24, 2018: Differences between MariaDB and MySQL

MariaDB and MySQL

MariaDB and MySQLJoin Percona’s Chief Evangelist, Colin Charles as he presents Differences Between MariaDB and MySQL on Wednesday, January 24, 2018, at 7:00 am PDT / 10:00 am EDT (UTC-7).

Tags: MariaDB, MySQL, Percona Server for MySQL, DBA, SysAdmin, DevOps
Experience Level: Novice

MariaDB and MySQL. Are they syntactically similar? Where do these two query languages differ? Why would I use one over the other?

MariaDB is on the path of gradually diverging from MySQL. One obvious example is the internal data dictionary currently under development for MySQL 8.0. This is a major change to the way metadata is stored and used within the server. MariaDB doesn’t have an equivalent feature. Implementing this feature could mark the end of datafile-level compatibility between MySQL and MariaDB.

There are also non-technical differences between MySQL and MariaDB, including:

  • Licensing: MySQL offers their code as open-source under the GPL, and provides the option of non-GPL commercial distribution in the form of MySQL Enterprise. MariaDB can only use the GPL because they derive their work from the MySQL source code under the terms of that license.
  • Support services: Oracle provides technical support, training, certification and consulting for MySQL, while MariaDB has their own support services. Some people will prefer working with smaller companies, as traditionally it affords them more leverage as a customer.
  • Community contributions: MariaDB touts the fact that they accept more community contributions than Oracle. Part of the reason for this disparity is that developers like to contribute features, bug fixes and other code without a lot of paperwork overhead (and they complain about the Oracle Contributor Agreement). However, MariaDB has its own MariaDB Contributor Agreement — which more or less serves the same purpose.

Colin will take a look at some of the differences between MariaDB and MySQL and help answer some of the common questions our Database Performance Experts get about the two databases.

Register for the webinar now.

Colin CharlesColin Charles, Chief Evangelist

Colin Charles is the Chief Evangelist at Percona. He was previously on the founding team for MariaDB Server in 2009, worked in MySQL since 2005, and been a MySQL user since 2000. Before joining MySQL, Colin worked actively on the Fedora and OpenOffice.org projects. He’s well-known within many open source communities and speaks on the conference circuit.


Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) 1.6.0 Is Now Available

Percona Monitoring and Management

Percona Monitoring and ManagementPercona announces the release of Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) 1.6.0. In this release, Percona Monitoring and Management Grafana metrics are available in the Advanced Data Exploration dashboard. We’ve improved the integration with MyRocks, and its data is now collected from SHOW GLOBAL STATUS.

The MongoDB Exporter now features two new metrics: mongodb_up to inform if the MongoDB Server is running and mongodb_scrape_errors_total reporting the total number of errors when scaping MongoDB.

In this release, we’ve greatly improved the performance of the mongodb:metrics monitoring service.

Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) 1.6.0 also includes version 4.6.3 of Grafana which includes fixes to bugs in the alert list and the alerting rules. More information is available in the Grafana’s change log.

New Features

  • PMM-1773: PMM Grafana specific metrics have been added to the Advanced Data Exploration dashboard.


  • PMM-1485Updated MyRocks integration: MyRocks data is now collected entirely from SHOW GLOBAL STATUS, and we have eliminated SHOW ENGINE ROCKSDB STATUS as a data source in mysqld_exporter.
  • PMM-1895Update Grafana to version 4.6.3:
    • Alert list: Now shows alert state changes even after adding manual annotations on dashboard #9951
    • Alerting: Fixes bug where rules evaluated as firing when all conditions were false and using OR operator. #9318
  • PMM-1586: The mongodb_exporter exporter exposes two new metrics: mongodb_up informing if the MongoDB Server is running and mongodb_scrape_errors_total informing the total number of times an error occurred when scraping MongoDB.
  • PMM-1764: Various small mongodb_exporter improvement
  • PMM-1942: Improved the consistency of using labels in all Prometheus related dashboards.
  • PMM-1936: Updated the Prometheus dashboard in Metrics Monitor
  • PMM-1937 Added the CPU Utilization Details (Cores) dashboard to Metrics Monitor.

Bug fixes

  • PMM-1549: Broken default auth db for mongodb:queries
  • PMM-1631: In some cases, percentage values were displayed incorrectly for MongoDB hosts.
  • PMM-1640: RDS exporter: simplify configuration
  • PMM-1760: After the mongodb:metrics monitoring service was added, the usage of CPU considerably increased in QAN versions 1.4.1 through 1.5.3.

    1.5.0 – CPU usage 95%
    1.5.3 – CPU usage 85%
    1.6.0 – CPU usage 1%

  • PMM-1815QAN could show data for a MySQL host when a MongoDB host was selected.
  • PMM-1888: In QAN, query metrics were not loaded when the QAN page was refreshed.
  • PMM-1898: In QANthe Per Query Stats graph displayed incorrect values for MongoDB
  • PMM-1796: In Metrics Monitor, the Top Process States Hourly graph from the MySQL Overview dashboard showed incorrect data.
  • PMM-1777: In QAN, the Load column could display incorrect data.
  • PMM-1744: The error Please provide AWS access credentials error appeared although the provided credentials could be processed successfully.
  • PMM-1676: In preparation for migration to Prometheus 2.0 we have updated the System Overview dashboard for compatibility.
  • PMM-1920: Some standard MySQL metrics were missing from the mysqld_exporter  Prometheus exporter.
  • PMM-1932: The Response Length metric was not displayed for MongoDB hosts in QAN.

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) Metrics

In this blog post, I’ll look at some helpful tips on troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management metrics.

With any luck, Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) works for you out of the box. Sometimes, however, things go awry and you see empty or broken graphs instead of dashboards full of insights.

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 1

Before we go through troubleshooting steps, let’s talk about how data makes it to the Grafana dashboards in the first place. The PMM Architecture documentation page helps explain it:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 2

If we focus just on the “Metrics” path, we see the following requirements:

  • The appropriate “exporters” (Part of PMM Client) are running on the hosts you’re monitoring
  • The database is configured to expose all the metrics you’re looking for
  • The hosts are correctly configured in the repository on PMM Server side (stored in Consul)
  • Prometheus on the PMM Server side can scrape them successfully – meaning it can reach them successfully, does not encounter any timeouts and has enough resources to ingest all the provided data
  • The exporters can retrieve metrics that they requested (i.e., there are no permissions problems)
  • Grafana can retrieve the metrics stored in Prometheus Server and display them

Now that we understand the basic requirements let’s look at troubleshooting the tool.

PMM Client

First, you need to check if the services are actually configured properly and running:

root@rocky:/mnt/data# pmm-admin list
pmm-admin 1.5.2
PMM Server      |
Client Name     | rocky
Client Address  |
Service Manager | linux-systemd
-------------- ------ ----------- -------- ------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------
-------------- ------ ----------- -------- ------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------
mysql:queries  rocky  -           YES      root:***@unix(/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock)  query_source=slowlog, query_examples=true
linux:metrics  rocky  42000       YES      -
mysql:metrics  rocky  42002       YES      root:***@unix(/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock)

Second, you can also instruct the PMM client to perform basic network checks. These can spot connectivity problems, time drift and other issues:

root@rocky:/mnt/data# pmm-admin check-network
PMM Network Status
Server Address |
Client Address |
* System Time
NTP Server (0.pool.ntp.org)         | 2018-01-06 09:10:33 -0500 EST
PMM Server                          | 2018-01-06 14:10:33 +0000 GMT
PMM Client                          | 2018-01-06 09:10:33 -0500 EST
PMM Server Time Drift               | OK
PMM Client Time Drift               | OK
PMM Client to PMM Server Time Drift | OK
* Connection: Client --> Server
-------------------- -------
-------------------- -------
Consul API           OK
Prometheus API       OK
Query Analytics API  OK
Connection duration | 355.085µs
Request duration    | 938.121µs
Full round trip     | 1.293206ms
* Connection: Client <-- Server
-------------- ------ ------------------- ------- ---------- ---------
-------------- ------ ------------------- ------- ---------- ---------
linux:metrics  rocky  OK      YES        -
mysql:metrics  rocky  OK      YES        -

If everything is working, next we can check if exporters are providing the expected data directly.

Checking Prometheus Exporters

Looking at the output from pmm-admin check-network, we can see the “REMOTE ENDPOINT”. This shows the exporter address, which you can use to access it directly in your browser:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 3

You can see MySQL Exporter has different sets of metrics for high, medium and low resolution, and you can click on them to see the provided metrics:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 4

There are few possible problems you may encounter at this stage

  • You do not see the metrics you expect to seeThis could be a configuration issue on the database side (docs for MySQL and MongoDB), permissions errors or exporter not being correctly configured to expose the needed metrics.
  • Page takes too long to load. This could mean the data capture is too expensive for your configuration. For example, if you have a million tables, you probably can’t afford to capture per-table data.

mysql_exporter_collector_duration_seconds is a great metric that allows you to see which collectors are enabled for different resolutions, and how much time it takes for a given collector to execute. This way you can find and potentially disable collectors that are too expensive for your environment.

Let’s look at some more advanced ways to troubleshoot exporters.  

Looking at ProcessList

root@rocky:/mnt/data# ps aux | grep mysqld_exporter
root      1697  0.0  0.0   4508   848 ?        Ss    2017   0:00 /bin/sh -c
/usr/local/percona/pmm-client/mysqld_exporter -collect.auto_increment.columns=true
-collect.binlog_size=true -collect.global_status=true -collect.global_variables=true
-collect.info_schema.innodb_metrics=true -collect.info_schema.processlist=true
-collect.info_schema.query_response_time=true -collect.info_schema.tables=true
-collect.info_schema.tablestats=true -collect.info_schema.userstats=true
-collect.perf_schema.eventswaits=true -collect.perf_schema.file_events=true
-collect.perf_schema.indexiowaits=true -collect.perf_schema.tableiowaits=true
-collect.perf_schema.tablelocks=true -collect.slave_status=true
-web.listen-address= -web.auth-file=/usr/local/percona/pmm-client/pmm.yml
-web.ssl-key-file=/usr/local/percona/pmm-client/server.key >>
/var/log/pmm-mysql-metrics-42002.log 2>&1

This shows us that the exporter is running, as well as specific command line options that were used to start it (which collectors were enabled, for example).

Checking out Log File

root@rocky:/mnt/data# tail /var/log/pmm-mysql-metrics-42002.log
time="2018-01-05T18:19:10-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:11-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:12-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:492"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:12-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:12-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:616"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:13-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:14-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:15-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
time="2018-01-05T18:19:16-05:00" level=error msg="Error pinging mysqld: dial unix
/var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock: connect: no such file or directory" source="mysqld_exporter.go:442"
2018/01/06 09:10:33 http: TLS handshake error from tls: first record does not look like a TLS handshake

If you have problems such as authentication or permission errors, you will see them in the log file. In the example above, we can see the exporter reporting many connection errors (the MySQL Server was down).

Prometheus Server

Next, we can take a look at the Prometheus Server. It is exposed in PMM Server at /prometheus path. We can go to Status->Targets to see which Targets are configured and if they are working: correctly

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 5

In this example, some hosts are scraped successfully while others are not. As you can see I have some hosts that are down, so scraping fails with “no route to host”. You might also see problems caused by firewall configurations and other reasons.

The next area to check, especially if you have gaps in your graph, is if your Prometheus server has enough resources to ingest all the data reported in your environment. Percona Monitoring and  Management ships with the Prometheus dashboard to help to answer this question (see demo).

There is a lot of information in this dashboard, but one of the most important areas you should check is if there is enough CPU available for Prometheus:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 6

The most typical problem to have with Prometheus is getting into “Rushed Mode” and dropping some of the metrics data:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 7

Not using enough memory to buffer metrics is another issue, which is shown as “Configured Target Storage Heap Size” on the graph:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 8

Values of around 40% of total memory size often make sense. The PMM FAQ details how to tune this setting.

If the amount of memory is already configured correctly, you can explore upgrading to a more powerful instance size or reducing the number of metrics Prometheus ingests. This can be done either by adjusting Metrics Resolution (as explained in FAQ) or disabling some of the collectors (Manual). 

You might wonder which collectors generate the most data? This information is available on the same Prometheus Dashboard:

Troubleshooting Percona Monitoring and Management Metrics 9

While these aren’t not exact values, they correlate very well with what the load collectors generate. In this case, for example, we can see that the Performance Schema is responsible for a large amount of time series data. As such, disabling its collectors can reduce the Prometheus load substantially.

Hopefully, these troubleshooting steps were helpful to you in diagnosing PMM’s metrics capture. In a later blog post, I will write about how to diagnose problems with Query Analytics (Demo).


Webinar January 18, 2018: MySQL Troubleshooting and Performance Optimization with Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) Part 2

Percona Monitoring and Management

Percona Monitoring and ManagementJoin Percona’s Product Manager Michael Coburn as he presents MySQL Troubleshooting and Performance Optimization with Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) Part 2 on Thursday, January 18, 2018, at 11:00 am PST / 2:00 pm EST (UTC-8).

Tags: Percona Monitoring and Management, PMM, Monitoring, MySQL, Performance, Optimization, DBA, SysAdmin, DevOps
Experience Level: Expert

Optimizing MySQL performance and troubleshooting MySQL problems are two of the most critical and challenging tasks for MySQL DBAs. The databases powering your applications need to handle heavy traffic loads while remaining responsive and stable. This is so that you can deliver an excellent user experience. Furthermore, DBA’s are also expected to find cost-efficient means of solving these issues.

In this webinar — the second part of a two-part series — Michael discusses how you can optimize and troubleshoot MySQL performance and demonstrate how Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) enables you to solve these challenges using free and open source software. We will look at specific, common MySQL problems and review the essential components in PMM that allow you to diagnose and resolve them.

By the end of this webinar, you will have a better understanding of how you can troubleshoot MySQL problems in your database.

Register for the webinar now.

Percona Monitoring and ManagementMichael Coburn, Product Manager

Michael joined Percona as a Consultant in 2012 and progressed through various roles including Managing Consultant, Principal Architect, Technical Account Manager, and Technical Support Engineer. He is now leading the Product Manager of Percona Monitoring and Management.


Percona Monitoring and Management 1.5.3 Is Now Available

Percona Monitoring and Management

Percona Monitoring and ManagementPercona announces the release of Percona Monitoring and Management 1.5.3. This release contains fixes for bugs found after the release of Percona Monitoring and Management 1.5.2, as well as some important fixes and improvements not related to the previous release.


  • PMM-1874: The read timeout of the proxy server (/prometheus) has been increased from the default of 60 seconds to avoid nxginx gateway timeout error when loading data-rich dashboards.
  • PMM-1863: We improved our handling of temporary Grafana credentials

Bug fixes

  • PMM-1828: On CentOS 6.9, pmm-admin list incorrectly reported that no monitoring services were running.
  • PMM-1842: It was not possible to restart the mysql:queries monitoring service after PMM Client was upgraded from version 1.0.4.
  • PMM-1797: It was not possible to update the CloudWatch data source credentials.
  • PMM-1829: When the user clicked a link in the Query Abstract column, an outdated version of QAN would open.
  • PMM-1836PMM Server installed in a Docker container could not be started if the updating procedure had been temporarily interrupted.
  • PMM-1871: In some cases, RDS instances could not be discovered.
  • PMM-1845: Converted FLUSH SLOW LOGS to FLUSH NO_WRITE_TO_BINLOG SLOW LOGS so that GTID event isn’t created
  • PMM-1816: Fixed a rendering error in Firefox.

Percona Monitoring and Management 1.5.0 Is Now Available

Percona Monitoring and Management

Percona announces the release of Percona Monitoring and Management 1.5.0 on November 28, 2017.

This release focuses on the following features:

  • Enhanced support for MySQL on Amazon RDS and Amazon Aurora – Dedicated Amazon Aurora dashboard offers maximum visibility into key database characteristics, eliminating the need for additional monitoring nodes.  We renamed Amazon RDS OS Metrics to Amazon RDS / Aurora MySQL Metrics
  • Simpler configuration – Percona Monitoring and Management now offers easier configuration of key Amazon RDS and Amazon Aurora settings via a web interface
  • One-click data collection – One button retrieves vital information on server performance to assist with troubleshooting
  • Improved interface – A simple, consistent user interface makes it faster and more fluid to switch between Query Analytics and Metrics Monitor

Highlights from our new Amazon RDS / Aurora MySQL Metrics dashboard:

Shared elements for Amazon Aurora MySQL and RDS MySQL

Amazon Aurora MySQL unique elements

Amazon RDS for MySQL unique elements

We’ve integrated Query Analytics into Metrics Monitor, and it appears as a separate dashboard known as PMM Query Analytics.

With this release, Percona Monitoring and Management introduces a new deployment option via AWS Marketplace. This is in addition to our distribution method of Amazon Machine Images (AMI).

We have upgraded Grafana and Prometheus in this release. PMM now includes Grafana 4.6.1. One of the most prominent features that the upgraded Grafana offers is the support of annotations. You can mark a point or select a region in a graph and give it a meaningful description. For more information, see the release highlights.

Prometheus version 1.8.2, shipped with this release, offers a number of bug fixes. For more information, see the Prometheus change log.

New features

  • PMM-434PMM enables monitoring of Amazon RDS and Amazon Aurora metrics
  • PMM-1133Query Analytics is available from Grafana as a dashboard
  • PMM-1470: Integrated Cloudwatch metrics into Prometheus
  • PMM-699: Combined AWS RDS and Amazon Aurora metrics into one dashboard
  • PMM-722: Distributed the MariaDB dashboard graph elements among other existing dashboards and removed the MariaDB dashboard. Further, we renamed the MyISAM dashboard  to MyISAM/Aria Metrics
  • PMM-1258: The DISABLE_UPDATES option enables preventing manual updates when PMM Server is run from a Docker container.
  • PMM-1500: Added InnoDB Buffer Disk Reads to graph InnoDB Buffer Pool Requests to better understand missed InnoDB BP cache hits


  • PMM-1577: Updated Prometheus to version 1.8.2
  • PMM-1603: Updated Grafana to version 4.6.1
  • PMM-1669: The representation of numeric values in the Context Switches graph in the System Overview dashboard was changed to improve readability.
  • PMM-1575: Templating rules were improved for the MyRocks and TokuDB dashboards so that only those instances with these storage engines are displayed

Bug fixes

  • PMM-1082: The CPU Usage graph on the Trends dashboard showed incorrect spikes
  • PMM-1549: The authentication of the mongodb:queries monitoring service did not work properly when the name of the database to authenticate was not provided.
  • PMM-1673: Fixed display issue with Microsoft Internet Explorer 11

MySQL Dashboard Improvements in Percona Monitoring and Management 1.4.0

In this blog post, I’ll walk through some of the improvements to the Percona Monitoring and Management (PMM) MySQL dashboard in release 1.4.0.

As the part of Percona Monitoring and Management development, we’re constantly looking for better ways to visualize information and help you to spot and resolve problems faster. We’ve made some updates to the MySQL dashboard in the 1.4.0 release. You can see those improvements in action in our Percona Monitoring and Management Demo Site: check out the MySQL Overview and MySQL InnoDB Metrics dashboards.

MySQL Client Thread Activity

Percona Monitoring and Management 1

One of the best ways to characterize a MySQL workload is to look at the number of MySQL server-client connections (Threads Connected). You should compare this number to how many of those threads are actually doing something on the server side (Threads Running), rather than just sitting idle waiting for a client to send the next request.

MySQL can handle thousands of connected threads quite well. However, many threads (hundred) running concurrently often increases query latency. Increased internal contention can make the situation much worse.

The problem with those metrics is that they are extremely volatile – one second you might have a lot of threads connected and running, and then none. This is especially true when some stalls on the MySQL level (or higher) causes pile-ups.

To provide better insight, we now show Peak Threads Connected and Peak Threads Running to help easily spot such potential pile-ups, as well as Avg Threads Running. These stats allow you look at a high number of threads connected and running to see if it there are just minor spikes (which tend to happen in many systems on a regular basis), or something more prolonged that warrants deeper investigation.

To simplify it even further: Threads Running spiking for a few seconds is OK, but spikes persisting for 5-10 seconds or more are often signs of problems that are impacting users (or problems about to happen).

InnoDB Logging Performance

Percona Monitoring and Management 2

Since I wrote a blog post about Choosing MySQL InnoDB Log File Size, I thought it would be great to check out how long the log file space would last (instead of just looking at how much log space is written per hour). Knowing how long the innodb_log_buffer_size lasts is also helpful for tuning this variable, in general.

This graph shows you how much data is written to the InnoDB Log Files, which helps to understand your disk bandwidth consumption. It also tells you how long it will take to go through your combined Redo Log Space and InnoDB Log Buffer Size (at this rate).

As I wrote in the blog post, there are a lot of considerations for choosing the InnoDB log file size, but having enough log space to accommodate all the changes for an hour is a good rule of thumb. As we can see, this system is close to full at around 50 minutes.

When it comes to innodb_log_buffer_sizeeven if InnoDB is not configured to flush the log at every transaction commit, it is going to be flushed every second by default. This means 10-15 seconds is usually good enough to accommodate the spikes. This system has it set at about 40 seconds (which is more than enough).

InnoDB Read-Ahead

Percona Monitoring and Management 3

This graph helps you understand how InnoDB Read-Ahead is working out, and is a pretty advanced graph.

In general, Innodb Read-Ahead is not very well understood. I think in most cases it is hard to tell if it is helping or hurting the current workload in its current configuration.

The for Read-Ahead in any system (not just InnoDB) is to pre-fetch data before it is really needed (in order to reduce latency and improve performance). The risk, however, is pre-fetching data that isn’t needed. This is wasteful.

InnoDB has two Read-Ahead options: Linear Read-Ahead (designed to speed up workloads that have physically sequential data access) and Random Read-Ahead (designed to help workloads that tend to access the data in the same vicinity but not in a linear order).

Due to potential overhead, only Linear Read-Ahead is enabled by default. You need to enable Random Read-Ahead separately if you want to determine its impact on your workload

Back to the graph in question: we show a number of pages pre-fetched by Linear and Random Read-Aheads to confirm if these are even in use with your workload. We show Number of Pages Fetched but Never Accessed (evicted without access) – shown as both the number of pages and as a percent of pages. If Fetched but Never Accessed is more than 30% or so, Read-Ahead might be producing more waste instead of helping your workload. It might need tuning.

We also show the portion of IO requests that InnoDB Read-Ahead served, which can help you understand the portion of resources spent on InnoDB Read-Ahead

Due to the timing of how InnoDB increments counters, the percentages of IO used for Read-Ahead and pages evicted without access shows up better on larger scale graphs.


I hope you find these graphs helpful. We’ll continue making Percona Monitoring and Management more helpful for troubleshooting database systems and getting better performance!

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