Use the span API to manually create spans for methods of interest. The API is extremely flexible, and offers the ability to customize your spans, by adding labels to them, or by changing the type, name, or timestamp.

OpenTracing fan? You can use the OpenTracing API, instead of the Agent API, to manually create spans.

How to create spans with the span APIedit

  1. Get the current span with currentSpan(), which may or may not have been created with auto-instrumentation.
  2. Create a child span with startSpan().
  3. Activate the span with activate().
  4. Customize the span with the span API.
import co.elastic.apm.api.ElasticApm;
import co.elastic.apm.api.Span;

Span parent = ElasticApm.currentSpan(); 
Span span = parent.startSpan(); 
try (Scope scope = span.activate()) { 
    span.setName("SELECT FROM customer"); 
    span.addLabel("foo", "bar"); 
    // do your thing...
} catch (Exception e) {
    throw e;
} finally {

Get current span

Create a child span

Make this span the active span on the current thread

Override the default span name

Add labels to the span

Combine with annotationsedit

You can combine annotations with the span API to increase their flexibility. Just get the current span on an annotated method and customize the span to your liking.

private static void spanWithAnnotation(String foo) {
    Span span = ElasticApm.currentSpan(); 
    span.setTag("foo", foo); 

Use @CaptureSpan annotation to create a span

Get the current span (the one created via the @CaptureSpan annotation)

Customize the span