Kafka monitoring

SkyWalking leverages Prometheus JMX Exporter to collect metrics data from the Kafka and leverages OpenTelemetry Collector to transfer the metrics to OpenTelemetry receiver and into the Meter System. Kafka entity as a Service in OAP and on the Layer: KAFKA.

Data flow

  1. The prometheus_JMX_Exporter collect metrics data from Kafka. Note: Running the exporter as a Java agent.
  2. OpenTelemetry Collector fetches metrics from prometheus_JMX_Exporter via Prometheus Receiver and pushes metrics to SkyWalking OAP Server via OpenTelemetry gRPC exporter.
  3. The SkyWalking OAP Server parses the expression with MAL to filter/calculate/aggregate and store the results.


  1. Setup prometheus_JMX_Exporter. This is an example for JMX Exporter configuration kafka-2_0_0.yml.
  2. Set up OpenTelemetry Collector. The example for OpenTelemetry Collector configuration, refer to here.
  3. Config SkyWalking OpenTelemetry receiver.

Kafka Monitoring

Kafka monitoring provides multidimensional metrics monitoring of Kafka cluster as Layer: KAFKA Service in the OAP. In each cluster, the kafka brokers are represented as Instance.

Kafka Cluster Supported Metrics

Monitoring Panel Metric Name Description Data Source
Under-Replicated Partitions meter_kafka_under_replicated_partitions Number of under-replicated partitions in the broker. A higher number is a sign of potential issues. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Offline Partitions Count meter_kafka_offline_partitions_count Number of partitions that are offline. Non-zero values indicate a problem. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Partition Count meter_kafka_partition_count Total number of partitions on the broker. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Leader Count meter_kafka_leader_count Number of leader partitions on this broker. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Active Controller Count meter_kafka_active_controller_count The number of active controllers in the cluster. Typically should be 1. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Leader Election Rate meter_kafka_leader_election_rate The rate of leader elections per minute. High rate could be a sign of instability. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Unclean Leader Elections Per Second meter_kafka_unclean_leader_elections_per_second The rate of unclean leader elections per second. Non-zero values indicate a serious problem. Prometheus JMX Exporter
Max Lag meter_kafka_max_lag The maximum lag between the leader and followers in terms of messages still needed to be sent. Higher lag indicates delays. Prometheus JMX Exporter

Kafka Broker Supported Metrics

Monitoring Panel Unit Metric Name Description Data Source
CPU Usage % meter_kafka_broker_cpu_time_total CPU usage in percentage Prometheus JMX Exporter
Memory Usage % meter_kafka_broker_memory_usage_percentage JVM heap memory usage in percentage Prometheus JMX Exporter
Incoming Messages Msg/sec meter_kafka_broker_messages_per_second Rate of incoming messages Prometheus JMX Exporter
Bytes In Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_bytes_in_per_second Rate of incoming bytes Prometheus JMX Exporter
Bytes Out Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_bytes_out_per_second Rate of outgoing bytes Prometheus JMX Exporter
Replication Bytes In Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_replication_bytes_in_per_second Rate of incoming bytes for replication Prometheus JMX Exporter
Replication Bytes Out Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_replication_bytes_out_per_second Rate of outgoing bytes for replication Prometheus JMX Exporter
Under-Replicated Partitions Count meter_kafka_broker_under_replicated_partitions Number of under-replicated partitions Prometheus JMX Exporter
Under Min ISR Partition Count Count meter_kafka_broker_under_min_isr_partition_count Number of partitions below the minimum ISR (In-Sync Replicas) Prometheus JMX Exporter
Partition Count Count meter_kafka_broker_partition_count Total number of partitions Prometheus JMX Exporter
Leader Count Count meter_kafka_broker_leader_count Number of partitions for which this broker is the leader Prometheus JMX Exporter
ISR Shrinks Count/sec meter_kafka_broker_isr_shrinks_per_second Rate of ISR (In-Sync Replicas) shrinking Prometheus JMX Exporter
ISR Expands Count/sec meter_kafka_broker_isr_expands_per_second Rate of ISR (In-Sync Replicas) expanding Prometheus JMX Exporter
Max Lag Count meter_kafka_broker_max_lag Maximum lag between the leader and follower for a partition Prometheus JMX Exporter
Purgatory Size Count meter_kafka_broker_purgatory_size Size of purgatory for Produce and Fetch operations Prometheus JMX Exporter
Garbage Collector Count Count/sec meter_kafka_broker_garbage_collector_count Rate of garbage collection cycles Prometheus JMX Exporter
Requests Per Second Req/sec meter_kafka_broker_requests_per_second Rate of requests to the broker Prometheus JMX Exporter
Request Queue Time ms meter_kafka_broker_request_queue_time_ms Average time a request spends in the request queue Prometheus JMX Exporter
Remote Time ms meter_kafka_broker_remote_time_ms Average time taken for a remote operation Prometheus JMX Exporter
Response Queue Time ms meter_kafka_broker_response_queue_time_ms Average time a response spends in the response queue Prometheus JMX Exporter
Response Send Time ms meter_kafka_broker_response_send_time_ms Average time taken to send a response Prometheus JMX Exporter
Network Processor Avg Idle % meter_kafka_broker_network_processor_avg_idle_percent Percentage of idle time for the network processor Prometheus JMX Exporter
Topic Messages In Total Count meter_kafka_broker_topic_messages_in_total Total number of messages per topic Prometheus JMX Exporter
Topic Bytes Out Per Second Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_topic_bytesout_per_second Rate of outgoing bytes per topic Prometheus JMX Exporter
Topic Bytes In Per Second Bytes/sec meter_kafka_broker_topic_bytesin_per_second Rate of incoming bytes per topic Prometheus JMX Exporter
Topic Fetch Requests Per Second Req/sec meter_kafka_broker_topic_fetch_requests_per_second Rate of fetch requests per topic Prometheus JMX Exporter
Topic Produce Requests Per Second Req/sec meter_kafka_broker_topic_produce_requests_per_second Rate of produce requests per topic Prometheus JMX Exporter


You can customize your own metrics/expression/dashboard panel. The metrics definition and expression rules are found in /config/otel-rules/kafka/kafka-cluster.yaml, /config/otel-rules/kafka/kafka-node.yaml. The Kafka dashboard panel configurations are found in /config/ui-initialized-templates/kafka.


For more details on monitoring Kafka and the metrics to focus on, see the following articles: