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Install Graphite and Grafana Ubuntu 16.04

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Why is this guide not ported to Ubuntu 18.04?

At my latest tests the package graphite-web was broken and Apache run into Python errors. I will update the tutorial as soon as I know a (non docker based!) workaround for this issues.

In this tutorial I'm going to use MySQL as database for Graphite and Whisper files as database for the performance data.

Most people use PostgreSQL as database for Graphite, but I'm more familiar with MySQL...

As web server I'm using Apache. If you like to mess around with things, you can also use Nginx.

All commands needs to run as user root or via sudo.

Install Graphite

First of all, we need to install some dependencies

apt-get install graphite-web graphite-carbon mysql-server python-mysqldb python-pymysql apache2 libapache2-mod-wsgi apt-transport-https ssl-cert

Create a MySQL User and Database for Graphite

As already mentioned, I'm using MySQL to store Graphite metadata.

CREATE USER 'graphite'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'password';
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON `graphite`.* TO 'graphite'@'localhost';

Now edit the following values in the file /etc/graphite/

The SECRET_KEY is use as salt, whenever graphite is going to hash something. Set something unique as value.

For example the output of the command uuidgen or so.


Set the Timezone of your monitoring nodes.

TIME_ZONE = 'Europe/Berlin'

In the last set, we need to configure the MySQL database connection

    'default': {
        'NAME': 'graphite',
        'ENGINE': 'django.db.backends.mysql',
        'USER': 'graphite',
        'PASSWORD': 'password',
        'HOST': '',
        'PORT': '3306',

Graphite comes with a tool, to create the database schema automatically. All you need to do is, run the following command:

graphite-manage syncdb

If you run into the error django.db.utils.IntegrityError: (1215, u'Cannot add foreign key constraint') just try again to run the command graphite-manage syncdb

Now open the file /etc/default/graphite-carbon and change the value to true to enable carbon cache on boot.


Configure Storage Time

Copy the following content to the file /etc/carbon/storage-schemas.conf to store all values prefixed with statusengine for 90 days.

pattern = ^statusengine\.
retentions = 60:90d

If you change these values later, you need to delete the Whisper files. For more information please go to the Carbon documentation.

For example:

pattern = ^statusengine\.
retentions = 60:90d

pattern = ^carbon\.
retentions = 60:90d

pattern = .*
retentions = 60s:1d

Now you can launch your Graphite instance.

systemctl start carbon-cache

Enable Graphite Web

a2dissite 000-default
cp /usr/share/graphite-web/apache2-graphite.conf /etc/apache2/sites-available

Move Graphite Web to port 8888

In this case, we don't want to use the Graphite Web. We just need the TCP API and the HTTP API provided by Graphite.

Open the file /etc/apache2/sites-available/apache2-graphite.conf and change the port to 8888:

<VirtualHost *:8888>

Now add the port 8888 to the Apache Config file /etc/apache2/ports.conf:

Listen 80
Listen 8888

<IfModule ssl_module>
        Listen 443

<IfModule mod_gnutls.c>
        Listen 443
a2ensite apache2-graphite
systemctl restart apache2

Now you should able to browse to the Graphite Web via http://your-address:8888

Graphite Web on Port 8888 for Statusengine

Install Grafana

Before you start! Please take a look at the official documentation!

echo "deb jessie main" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/grafana.list
curl | apt-key add -
apt-get update
apt-get install grafana

systemctl daemon-reload
systemctl start grafana-server
systemctl enable grafana-server

Configure Apache as reverse proxy for Grafana

Create the file /etc/apache2/sites-available/apache2-grafana.conf with the following content:

<VirtualHost *:80>

    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteCond %{HTTPS} off
    RewriteRule (.*) https://%{SERVER_NAME}/$1 [R,L]

<VirtualHost *:443>
    ProxyPreserveHost On
    ProxyPass /
    ProxyPassReverse /

    SSLEngine On
    SSLCertificateFile /etc/ssl/certs/ssl-cert-snakeoil.pem
    SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/ssl/private/ssl-cert-snakeoil.key

Notice: We added an automatically redirect from http to https using self-signed certificates.

Enable the new configuration

a2ensite apache2-grafana
a2enmod proxy
a2enmod proxy_http
a2enmod ssl
a2enmod xml2enc
a2enmod rewrite
systemctl restart apache2

Now you should able to browse to the Grafana Frontend via https://your-address.

Username: admin

Password: admin

Grafana via HTTPS

The Grafana configuration is located at /etc/grafana/grafana.ini. I would recommend you to take a look at this file.

Add Graphite as Datasource in Grafana

Add Graphite data source in Grafana

Configure Statusengine Worker to save Performance data to Graphite

Add your new Graphite instance to your Statusengine Worker Config in /opt/statusengine/worker/etc/config.yml

Statusengine Worker use the "plaintext protocol", an TCP connection to save metrics to Graphite.

Remember to change the IP Address!

process_perfdata: 1

number_perfdata_worker: 1

# - crate
 - graphite
# - mysql

graphite_prefix: statusengine


graphite_port: 2003

To enable the ne settings, restart Statusengine Worker

systemctl restart statusengine

Create your first Grafana Dashboard

Now you can create the first Graph in Grafana. Thanks to the Grafana UI this is super easy.

Create the first Graph in Grafana

If you have gaps in your Graphs, set Null value to connected

Grafana null value connected

Configure Statusengine Ui to load Performance data from Graphite

In the last step you need to enable Graphite as Performance Data Backend for Statusengine Ui. Open the file /usr/share/statusengine-ui/etc/config.yml and change the following values.

Remember to change the IP Address!

display_perfdata: 1

# Uncomment to enable
# CrateDB as Performance Data Backend
# CrateDB is the default at the moment
#perfdata_backend: crate

# Graphite as Performance Data Backend
perfdata_backend: graphite

# MySQL as Performance Data Backend
#perfdata_backend: mysql

graphite_prefix: statusengine


graphite_use_basic_auth: 0

graphite_user: graphite

graphite_password: password

graphite_allow_self_signed_certificates: 0

Statusengine Ui Performance Data via Graphite Backend

Play around

I recommend you to play around with Grafana and get in touch if you are new to it.

This is an example Dashboard I created:

Grafana example dashboard dark

Delete old records from Whisper

Graphite uses Carbon/Whisper to store the performance data.

You want to delete old records, just rm the files from: