In this quickstart guide, you'll learn how to enable collectors so you can get metrics from your favorite applications and services.
This guide will not cover advanced collector features, such as enabling/disabling entire plugins,
- Find the collector for your application or service
- Configure your application or service for monitoring
- Edit the collector's configuration file
- Enable the collector
Netdata has pre-installed collectors for hundreds of popular applications and services. You don't need to install anything to collect metrics from many popular services, like Nginx web servers, MySQL/MariaDB databases, and much more.
To find whether Netdata has a pre-installed collector for your favorite app/service, check out our collector support list. The only exception is the third-party collectors, which you do need to install yourself. However, this quickstart guide will focus on pre-installed collectors.
When you find a collector you're interested in, take note of its orchestrator. These are in the headings above each
table, and there are four: Bash, Go, Node, and Python. They go by their respective names:
If there is a collector written in both Go and Python, it's better to choose the Go-based version, as we will eventually deprecate most Python-based collectors.
From here on out, this quickstart guide will use the Nginx collector as an example to showcase the process of configuring and enabling one of Netdata's pre-installed collectors.
Every collector's documentation comes with instructions on how to configure your app/service to make it available to Netdata's collector. Our collector support list contains links to each collector's documentation page so you can learn more.
For example, the Nginx collector
documentation states that your Nginx
installation must have the
stub_status module configured correctly, in addition to an active
stub_status/ page, for
Netdata to monitor it. You can confirm whether you have the module enabled with the following command:
If this command returns nothing, you'll need to enable the
Next, edit your
/etc/nginx/sites-enabled/default file to include a
location block with the following, which enables
At this point, your Nginx installation is fully configured and ready for Netdata to monitor it. Next, you'll configure your collector.
This step may not be required based on how you configured your app/service, as each collector comes with a few
pre-configured jobs that look for the app/service in common and expected locations. For example, the Nginx collector
looks for a
stub_status page at
http://127.0.0.1/stub_status, which allows it to
auto-detect almost all local Nginx web servers.
Despite Netdata's auto-detection capabilities, it's important to know how to edit collector configuration files.
You should always edit configuration files with the
edit-config script that comes with every installation of Netdata.
To edit a collector configuration file, navigate to your Netdata configuration directory.
edit-config with the path to the collector's configuration file.
How do you find that path to the collector's configuration file? Look under the Configuration heading in the collector's documentation. Each file contains a short code block with the relevant command.
For example, the Nginx collector has its
configuration file at
This file contains all of the possible job parameters to help you monitor Nginx in all sorts of complex deployments. At
the bottom of the file is a
[JOB] section, which contains the two default jobs. Configure these as needed, using those
parameters as a reference, to configure the collector.
Most collectors are enabled and will auto-detect their app/service without manual configuration. However, you need to restart Netdata to trigger the auto-detection process.
To restart Netdata on most systems, use
sudo systemctl restart netdata, or the appropriate
method for your system.
Open Netdata's dashboard in your browser, or refresh the page if you already have it open. You should now see a new entry in the menu and new interactive charts!
Collector not working? Learn about collector troubleshooting in our collector reference.
View our collectors guides to get specific instructions on enabling new and popular collectors.