The OpenTelemetry project uses terminology you may or may not be familiar with. In addition, the project may define the terminology in a different way than others. This page captures terminology used in the project and what it means.
The process of combining multiple measurements into exact or estimated
statistics about the measurements that took place during an interval of time,
during program execution. Used by the
Application Programming Interface. In the OpenTelemetry project, used to define
how telemetry data is generated per
One or more
Services designed for end users or other applications.
Application Performance Monitoring is about monitoring software applications, their performance (speed, reliability, availability, etc.) to detect issues, alerting and tooling for finding the root cause.
Refers to telemetry collection methods that do not require the end-user to modify application’s source code. Methods vary by programming language, and examples include bytecode injection or monkey patching.
A mechanism for propagating name/value pairs to help establish a causal relationship between events and services. See baggage spec.
A component of an
Application that is not running inside a
private infrastructure and is typically used directly by end-users. Examples of
client-side apps are browser apps, mobile apps, and apps running on IoT devices.
A vendor-agnostic implementation on how to receive, process, and export telemetry data. A single binary that can be deployed as an agent or gateway.
Also known as the OpenTelemetry Collector. More on the Collector here.
More on Distributed Tracing here.
Short for Hypertext Transfer Protocol.
Library that provides the instrumentation for a given
Instrumented Library and
Instrumentation Library may be the same
Library if it has built-in OpenTelemetry instrumentation. See
A language-specific collection of behavior invoked by an interface.
Sometimes used to refer to a collection of
Log Records. May be
ambiguous, since people also sometimes use
Log to refer to a single
Log Record, thus this term should be used carefully and in the
context where ambiguity is possible additional qualifiers should be used (e.g.
Log Record). See more.
Short form for
A set of libraries for various languages that allow you to collect application metrics and distributed traces, then transfer the data to a backend of your choice in real time. Precursor to OpenTelemetry. See more.
Short form for
Short form for OpenTelemetry.
Short form for OpenTelemetry Collector.
Short for OpenTelemetry Protocol.
Language independent interface types. See more.
Captures information about the entity for which telemetry is recorded. For
example, a process producing telemetry that is running in a container on
Kubernetes has a pod name, it is in a namespace and possibly is part of a
deployment which also has a name. All three of these attributes can be included
Resource and applied to any data source.
Short for Representational State Transfer.
Short for Remote Procedure Call.
Defines standard names and values of
Metadata in order to provide
vendor-agnostic telemetry data.
Describes the cross-language requirements and expectations for all implementations. See more.
The result of the operation. Typically used to indicate whether an error occurred. See more.
An in-process alternative to external exporters. When included, they collect and aggregate tracing and metrics information in the background; this data is served on web pages when requested. See more.