How to Track Performance with Droplet Graphs

Keeping an eye on your server’s performance is important, and DigitalOcean provides Droplet graphs with up-to-the minute visualizations of how your server is performing over time.

Droplets come with some graphs available by default. You can get additional graphs in the control panel by enabling DigitalOcean Monitoring, a free, opt-in service.

Default Droplet Graphs

To view a Droplet’s graphs, click its name on the dashboard. You’ll arrive directly on the Graphs page. By default, three graphs are available for any Droplet:

  • The Bandwidth public chart displays public bandwidth usage in megabits per second. Incoming bandwidth is dark purple and outgoing bandwidth is light purple.

  • The CPU usage shows the percent of total processing power being used, with light blue for user jobs and dark blue for system processes.

  • The Disk I/O displays disk read and write operations in megabytes per second, with read operations in dark green and write operations in light green.

The times in these graphs are in your local time zone, as determined by your browser.

Screenshot of Default Graphs

If you have enabled private networking, you’ll also have access to a fourth graph to track private network bandwidth usage. Like the Bandwidth public graph, the Bandwidth private graph will not appear until there is actual network traffic. Once there is, then the Bandwidth private chart displays the private bandwidth usage in megabits per second. Incoming bandwidth use is shown in dark purple and outgoing bandwidth in light purple.

Metrics Agent

The default Droplet graphs use metrics collected by external tools; they require no additional services on the Droplet itself. You can enable additional metrics graphs and alerting with the DigitalOcean metrics agent, which is a small utility that runs on the Droplet.

You can install the metrics agent automatically when you provision a Droplet or after a Droplet has been created.

On 8 April, 2019, we released a new Prometheus-based metrics agent into production. All agent installations on or after this date will receive the new agent by default. On 8 July, 2019, the legacy metrics agent will be deprecated, meaning users will no longer be able to view metrics from Droplets running the legacy agent. You can upgrade to the new agent at any time.

Once the agent is installed, you’ll have access to these additional graphs:

  • Load Average measures whether the CPU is keeping up with queued processes. There are three lines representing 1-, 5-, and 15-minute load average calculation timeframes in blue, green, and purple, respectively. You can find more details on load average in the monitoring glossary.

  • The Memory line graph displays the percentage of physical RAM in use.

  • The Disk Usage line graph shows the percentage of space being used on the Droplet’s disk.

Screenshot of extended graphs

The Droplet graph timeframe options are 6 hours, 24 hours, 7 days, or 30 days. Data resolution is based on number of points, with a fixed number of points per plot. When you mouse over any of the graphs, a line appears on all of them, pinpointing a moment in time. A graph legend appears along with metrics for that specific point in time.