Monitor your Internet Connection With Prometheus And Grafana

Sep 8, 2023 · 4 mins read
Monitor your Internet Connection With Prometheus And Grafana

In the video below, we show how to monitor your Internet connection with Prometheus and Grafana

A lot of the things we do these days relies on having an Internet connection

Now in the early days you just paid for access to the Internet and wanted an alert if it went down

But now you can purchase packages with different upload and download speeds, so it’s not just about monitoring reliability, but also consistency

In other words, are you getting the service you’re paying for or are there times during the day when there are slowdowns or dropouts?

Now an interesting open source combination of monitoring tools that’s available for free is Prometheus and Grafana

And in this video we go over how to configure Prometheus and Grafana to monitor your Internet connection, when you’re using Docker

Useful links:

Now because this video is specifically about monitoring your Internet connection, I’m going to assume that you already have Prometheus and Grafana installed or you know how to set these up

If not then I do have another video which shows you how to install and configure these in Docker

Install Speedtest Exporter:
Prometheus relies on exporters for gathering metrics and ideally I’d prefer to use one they’ve listed on their website

Unfortunately the Speedtest Exporter they mention has been archived and hasn’t been updated in the past 2 years

Now I did find this one which is still being maintained so that’s what we’ll install

Because I’m using Docker Compose then I need to edit the configuration file for that

nano docker-compose.yml

    image: miguelndecarvalho/speedtest-exporter
    container_name: speedtest-exporter
      - '9798:9798'
    restart: unless-stopped

Now save and exit

This is based on the example configuration provided on the Github webpage which was helpful

So we’re referencing the image to download and run as well as providing a name for the container to make it easier to identify

We’re using the default port and want this to be automatically restarted if the server reboots for instance, but not if we manually stop the container for maintenance

Now we can start the container

docker compose up -d

Configure Prometheus:
The next thing to do is to configure Prometheus to scrape metrics from the Speedtest Exporter

So we’ll edit the configuration file and create a job for that

nano prometheus/prometheus.yml

  - job_name: 'speedtest-exporter'
    scrape_interval: 1h
    scrape_timeout: 1m
      - targets: ['']

Now save and exit

Again, this is based on an example from the developer’s Github page

Out of courtesy we don’t want to be running tests like this too often although not only does it place a load on the server but also on your own Internet connection

So in this example a check is made every 1 hour. As a result, you have to wait 1 hour before you’ll get the first results

Because the exporter is in a different container and I don’t want to overcomplicate things, the target is the IP address of the computer running Docker and the port the exporter uses

TIP: If you restrict outbound Internet access, which you should, the computer will need access to servers on the Internet for TCP port 8080

As we’ve changed the configuration file we either need to reload this container or as I’ve configured Prometheus to allow me to reload its configuration I’ll run this command

curl -X POST localhost:9090/-/reload

Install Grafana Dashboard:
While you can create your own dashboards, others provide their dashboards to the public which you can find on the Grafana website

One I’ve found to be useful and the one suggested by the developer is this one

You can pick another one if you prefer but in this example click Copy ID to clipboard

Login to Grafana

In the top left corner click the menu button and select Dashboards

Now click on the New drop-down menu on the right and select Import

Paste the ID you copied into the Import via field then click Load

Change the name of the dashboard if you’d prefer but lower down select the Prometheus data source we created then click Import

Over time you should get a useful visual trend of how your Internet connection is performing

If you notice regular slowdowns or dropouts at certain times of the day then it’s worth investigating

Typically your Internet bandwidth connection will be shared among neighbours so a slowdown may be seen during peak times

But there might be something else causing this

For instance maybe a network device or device is under load at certain times

In any case, you now have a means to monitor your Internet connection

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