Metricbeat quick start: installation and configuration


Metricbeat quick start: installation and configurationedit

Metricbeat helps you monitor your servers and the services they host by collecting metrics from the operating system and services.

This guide describes how to get started quickly with metrics collection. You’ll learn how to:

  • install Metricbeat on each system you want to monitor
  • specify the metrics you want to collect
  • send the metrics to Elasticsearch
  • visualize the metrics data in Kibana
Metricbeat System dashboard

Before you beginedit

You need Elasticsearch for storing and searching your data, and Kibana for visualizing and managing it.

To get started quickly, spin up a deployment of our hosted Elasticsearch Service. The Elasticsearch Service is available on AWS, GCP, and Azure. Try it out for free.

Step 1: Install Metricbeatedit

Install Metricbeat as close as possible to the service you want to monitor. For example, if you have four servers with MySQL running, it’s recommended that you run Metricbeat on each server. This allows Metricbeat to access your service from localhost and does not cause any additional network traffic or prevent Metricbeat from collecting metrics when there are network problems. Metrics from multiple Metricbeat instances will be combined on the Elasticsearch server.

To download and install Metricbeat, use the commands that work with your system:

curl -L -O
sudo dpkg -i metricbeat-8.4.3-amd64.deb

Other installation optionsedit

Step 2: Connect to the Elastic Stackedit

Connections to Elasticsearch and Kibana are required to set up Metricbeat.

Set the connection information in metricbeat.yml. To locate this configuration file, see Directory layout.

Specify the of your Elasticsearch Service, and set cloud.auth to a user who is authorized to set up Metricbeat. For example: "staging:dXMtZWFzdC0xLmF3cy5mb3VuZC5pbyRjZWM2ZjI2MWE3NGJmMjRjZTMzYmI4ODExYjg0Mjk0ZiRjNmMyY2E2ZDA0MjI0OWFmMGNjN2Q3YTllOTYyNTc0Mw=="
cloud.auth: "metricbeat_setup:YOUR_PASSWORD" 

This examples shows a hard-coded password, but you should store sensitive values in the secrets keystore.

To learn more about required roles and privileges, see Grant users access to secured resources.

You can send data to other outputs, such as Logstash, but that requires additional configuration and setup.

Step 3: Enable and configure metrics collection modulesedit

Metricbeat uses modules to collect metrics. Each module defines the basic logic for collecting data from a specific service, such as Redis or MySQL. A module consists of metricsets that fetch and structure the data. Read How Metricbeat works to learn more.

  1. Identify the modules you need to enable. To see the list of available modules, run:

    metricbeat modules list
  2. From the installation directory, enable one or more modules. If you accept the default configuration without enabling additional modules, Metricbeat collects system metrics only.

    The following command enables the nginx config in the modules.d directory:

    metricbeat modules enable nginx

    See the modules command to learn more about this command. If you are using a Docker image, see Run Metricbeat on Docker.

  3. In the module config under modules.d, change the module settings to match your environment. See Standard config options for more about available settings.

To test your configuration file, change to the directory where the Metricbeat binary is installed, and run Metricbeat in the foreground with the following options specified: ./metricbeat test config -e. Make sure your config files are in the path expected by Metricbeat (see Directory layout), or use the -c flag to specify the path to the config file.

For more information about configuring Metricbeat, also see:

Step 4: Set up assetsedit

Metricbeat comes with predefined assets for parsing, indexing, and visualizing your data. To load these assets:

  1. Make sure the user specified in metricbeat.yml is authorized to set up Metricbeat.
  2. From the installation directory, run:

    metricbeat setup -e

    -e is optional and sends output to standard error instead of the configured log output.

This step loads the recommended index template for writing to Elasticsearch and deploys the sample dashboards for visualizing the data in Kibana.

A connection to Elasticsearch (or Elasticsearch Service) is required to set up the initial environment. If you’re using a different output, such as Logstash, see Load the index template manually and Load Kibana dashboards.

Step 5: Start Metricbeatedit

Before starting Metricbeat, modify the user credentials in metricbeat.yml and specify a user who is authorized to publish events.

To start Metricbeat, run:

sudo service metricbeat start

If you use an init.d script to start Metricbeat, you can’t specify command line flags (see Command reference). To specify flags, start Metricbeat in the foreground.

Also see Metricbeat and systemd.

Metricbeat should begin streaming metrics to Elasticsearch.

Step 6: View your data in Kibanaedit

Metricbeat comes with pre-built Kibana dashboards and UIs for visualizing log data. You loaded the dashboards earlier when you ran the setup command.

To open the dashboards:

  1. Launch Kibana:

    1. Log in to your Elastic Cloud account.
    2. Navigate to the Kibana endpoint in your deployment.
  2. In the side navigation, click Discover. To see Metricbeat data, make sure the predefined metricbeat-* index pattern is selected.

    If you don’t see data in Kibana, try changing the time filter to a larger range. By default, Kibana shows the last 15 minutes.

  3. In the side navigation, click Dashboard, then select the dashboard that you want to open.

The dashboards are provided as examples. We recommend that you customize them to meet your needs.

What’s next?edit

Now that you have your infrastructure metrics streaming into Elasticsearch, learn how to unify your logs, metrics, uptime, and application performance data.

  1. Ingest data from other sources by installing and configuring other Elastic Beats:

    Elastic Beats To capture




    Windows event logs


    Uptime information


    Application performance metrics


    Audit events

  2. Use the Observability apps in Kibana to search across all your data:

    Elastic apps Use to

    Metrics app

    Explore metrics about systems and services across your ecosystem

    Logs app

    Tail related log data in real time

    Uptime app

    Monitor availability issues across your apps and services

    APM app

    Monitor application performance

    SIEM app

    Analyze security events