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Produces the information required to observe series of correlated operations in a distributed system. Once collected they show the path, measurements and faults in an end-to-end transaction.

Best Practices

  • Ensure that at least key business transactions are traced.
  • Include in each trace necessary information to identify software releases (i.e. service name, version). This is important to correlate deployments and system degradation.
  • Ensure dependencies are included in trace (databases, I/O).
  • If costs are a concern use sampling, avoiding throwing away errors, unexpected behavior and critical information.
  • Don't reinvent the wheel, use existing tools to collect and analyze the data.
  • Ensure personal identifiable information policies and restrictions are followed.
  • Azure Monitor - Umbrella of services including system metrics, log analytics and more.
  • Jaeger Tracing - Open source, end-to-end distributed tracing.
  • Grafana - Open source dashboard & visualization tool. Supports Log, Metrics and Distributed tracing data sources.

Consider using OpenTelemetry as it implements open-source cross-platform context propagation for end-to-end distributed transactions over heterogeneous components out-of-the-box. It takes care of automatically creating and managing the Trace Context object among a full stack of microservices implemented across different technical stacks.

Last update: December 15, 2022