Data Discovery and Lineage for Big Data Ecosystem
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WhereHows Build Status latest Gitter PRs Welcome

WhereHows is a data discovery and lineage tool built at LinkedIn. It integrates with all the major data processing systems and collects both catalog and operational metadata from them.

Within the central metadata repository, WhereHows curates, associates, and surfaces the metadata information through two interfaces:

  • a web application that enables data & linage discovery, and community collaboration
  • an API endpoint that empowers automation of data processes/applications

WhereHows serves as the single platform that:

  • links data objects with people and processes
  • enables crowdsourcing for data knowledge
  • provides data governance and provenance based on ownership and lineage

Who Uses WhereHows?

Here is a list of companies known to use WhereHows. Let us know if we missed your company!

How Is WhereHows Used?

How WhereHows is used inside of LinkedIn and other potential use cases.


The detailed information can be found in the Wiki

Examples in VM (Deprecated)

There is a pre-built vmware image (about 11GB) to quickly demonstrate the functionality of WhereHows. Check out the VM Guide

WhereHows Docker

Docker can provide configuration free dev/production setup quickly, please check out Docker Getting Start Guide

Getting Started

New to Wherehows? Check out the Getting Started Guide


First, please setup the metadata repository in MySQL.

  DEFAULT COLLATE utf8_general_ci;

CREATE USER 'wherehows';
SET PASSWORD FOR 'wherehows' = PASSWORD('wherehows');
GRANT ALL ON wherehows.* TO 'wherehows'

Execute the DDL files to create the required repository tables in wherehows database.


  1. Get the source code: git clone
  2. Put a few 3rd-party jar files to wherehows-etl/extralibs directory. Some of these jar files may not be available in Maven Central or Artifactory. See the download instrucitons for more detail. cd WhereHows/wherehows-etl/extralibs
  3. From the WhereHows root directory and build all the modules: ./gradlew build
  4. Start the metadata ETL and API service: ./gradlew wherehows-backend:runPlayBinary
  5. In a new terminal, start the web front-end: ./gradlew wherehows-frontend:runPlayBinary. The WhereHows UI is available at http://localhost:9001 by default. You can change the port number by editing the value of project.ext.httpPort in wherehows-frontend/build.gradle.


Check out the current roadmap for WhereHows.


Want to contribute? Check out the Contributors Guide


Want help? Check out the Gitter chat room and Google Groups