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// Copyright 2014 The Prometheus Authors
// Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
// you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
// You may obtain a copy of the License at
// Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
// distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
// See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
// limitations under the License.
package prometheus
// Collector is the interface implemented by anything that can be used by
// Prometheus to collect metrics. A Collector has to be registered for
// collection. See Registerer.Register.
// The stock metrics provided by this package (Gauge, Counter, Summary,
// Histogram, Untyped) are also Collectors (which only ever collect one metric,
// namely itself). An implementer of Collector may, however, collect multiple
// metrics in a coordinated fashion and/or create metrics on the fly. Examples
// for collectors already implemented in this library are the metric vectors
// (i.e. collection of multiple instances of the same Metric but with different
// label values) like GaugeVec or SummaryVec, and the ExpvarCollector.
type Collector interface {
// Describe sends the super-set of all possible descriptors of metrics
// collected by this Collector to the provided channel and returns once
// the last descriptor has been sent. The sent descriptors fulfill the
// consistency and uniqueness requirements described in the Desc
// documentation.
// It is valid if one and the same Collector sends duplicate
// descriptors. Those duplicates are simply ignored. However, two
// different Collectors must not send duplicate descriptors.
// Sending no descriptor at all marks the Collector as “unchecked”,
// i.e. no checks will be performed at registration time, and the
// Collector may yield any Metric it sees fit in its Collect method.
// This method idempotently sends the same descriptors throughout the
// lifetime of the Collector. It may be called concurrently and
// therefore must be implemented in a concurrency safe way.
// If a Collector encounters an error while executing this method, it
// must send an invalid descriptor (created with NewInvalidDesc) to
// signal the error to the registry.
Describe(chan<- *Desc)
// Collect is called by the Prometheus registry when collecting
// metrics. The implementation sends each collected metric via the
// provided channel and returns once the last metric has been sent. The
// descriptor of each sent metric is one of those returned by Describe
// (unless the Collector is unchecked, see above). Returned metrics that
// share the same descriptor must differ in their variable label
// values.
// This method may be called concurrently and must therefore be
// implemented in a concurrency safe way. Blocking occurs at the expense
// of total performance of rendering all registered metrics. Ideally,
// Collector implementations support concurrent readers.
Collect(chan<- Metric)
// DescribeByCollect is a helper to implement the Describe method of a custom
// Collector. It collects the metrics from the provided Collector and sends
// their descriptors to the provided channel.
// If a Collector collects the same metrics throughout its lifetime, its
// Describe method can simply be implemented as:
// func (c customCollector) Describe(ch chan<- *Desc) {
// DescribeByCollect(c, ch)
// }
// However, this will not work if the metrics collected change dynamically over
// the lifetime of the Collector in a way that their combined set of descriptors
// changes as well. The shortcut implementation will then violate the contract
// of the Describe method. If a Collector sometimes collects no metrics at all
// (for example vectors like CounterVec, GaugeVec, etc., which only collect
// metrics after a metric with a fully specified label set has been accessed),
// it might even get registered as an unchecked Collecter (cf. the Register
// method of the Registerer interface). Hence, only use this shortcut
// implementation of Describe if you are certain to fulfill the contract.
// The Collector example demonstrates a use of DescribeByCollect.
func DescribeByCollect(c Collector, descs chan<- *Desc) {
metrics := make(chan Metric)
go func() {
for m := range metrics {
descs <- m.Desc()
// selfCollector implements Collector for a single Metric so that the Metric
// collects itself. Add it as an anonymous field to a struct that implements
// Metric, and call init with the Metric itself as an argument.
type selfCollector struct {
self Metric
// init provides the selfCollector with a reference to the metric it is supposed
// to collect. It is usually called within the factory function to create a
// metric. See example.
func (c *selfCollector) init(self Metric) {
c.self = self
// Describe implements Collector.
func (c *selfCollector) Describe(ch chan<- *Desc) {
ch <- c.self.Desc()
// Collect implements Collector.
func (c *selfCollector) Collect(ch chan<- Metric) {
ch <- c.self