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Use this cookbook to install and configure collectd to send data to SignalFx. It can perform the following tasks:

  • Install SignalFx's build of collectd, an open-source monitoring daemon.
  • Install and configure SignalFx's metadata plugin for collectd
  • Configure collectd's write_http plugin to send data to SignalFx
  • Install and configure collectd plugins for data collection from the following software:
    • Apache webserver
    • Cassandra
    • Docker
    • ElasticSearch
    • Iostat
    • Kafka
    • Memcached
    • Mesos
    • MongoDB
    • MySQL
    • Nginx
    • Postgres
    • Redis
    • Varnish
    • Vmstat
    • Zookeeper

System Requirements

This cookbook has been tested on the following operating systems:

CentOS 6, 7; Amazon Linux 1503, 1509, 1603, 1609; RHEL 6, 7; Ubuntu 1204, 1404, 1504, 1604; Debian GNU/Linux 7, 8, 9;


  • Use the default recipe to install collectd, configure plugins, and configure collectd to send metrics to SignalFx.
  • Use the individual collectd plugin recipes to install individual collectd plugins.

1. Install all cookbook dependencies and upload to the Chef Server

2. Install on your local machine

knife cookbook site install chef_install_configure_collectd --skip-dependencies

This command installs the chef_install_configure_collectd cookbook to your local machine.

3. Supply your SignalFx API token.

In order to send data to SignalFx, you must provide a value for your SignalFx API token in attributes/default.rb as follows, replacing YOUR_SIGNALFX_API_TOKEN with the API token for your SignalFx organization:

default['write_http']['API_TOKEN'] = 'YOUR_SIGNALFX_API_TOKEN'

4. (Optional) Supply configuration for collectd and plugins.

This cookbook includes default configuration for collectd in attributes/default.rb, and for plugins in individually-named files in the attributes directory. Before using this cookbook to install collectd plugins, supply configuration values for each plugin you will install in that plugin's attributes file.

See Attributes below for a detailed list of all available attributes.

5. Upload to Chef server

knife cookbook upload chef_install_configure_collectd

This command uploads the chef_install_configure_collectd cookbook to the Chef server.

6. Apply to Chef clients

Using bootstrap

After supplying attributes, use knife bootstrap to apply the recipes to Chef clients. For example, the following command applies the chef_install_configure_collectd recipe and installs the Apache collectd plugin:

knife bootstrap $ip --ssh-user $username --node-name $nodename --run-list 'recipe[chef_install_configure_collectd], recipe[chef_install_configure_collectd::config-apache]'


Collectd Attributes

  • attributes/SignalFx_repo.rb - Contains the names and locations of SignalFx collectd packages.

  • attributes/default.rb - Basic attributes for SignalFx configuration.

    • default['write_http']['AWS_integration'] : 'true' if you want to sync AWS metadata to SignalFx, otherwise 'false' (default: 'true')
    • default['write_http']['Ingest_host'] : URL of the SignalFx ingest service.
    • default['write_http']['API_TOKEN'] : Your SignalFx API token.
    • default['collectd_version'] : The version of SignalFx collectd to install. (default: 'latest')
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['interval'] : Interval in seconds to collectd data (default: 10 seconds)
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['timeout'] : Collectd Timeout (default: 2 iterations)
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['FQDNLookup'] : Collectd Directive to lookup FQDN when setting hostname (default: 'true')
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['logfile']['LogLevel'] : Collectd Logging Level (default: 'info')
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['logfile']['File'] : Collectd Log file (default: '/var/log/collectd.log')
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['logfile']['PrintSeverity'] : Collectd directive to log severity level (default: 'false')
  • To add a dimension to every datapoint sent to SignalFx, add an entry to default.rb as follows:

   default["write_http"]["Ingest_host_parameters"]["YOUR_KEY1"] = "YOUR_VALUE1"
   default["write_http"]["Ingest_host_parameters"]["YOUR_KEY2"] = "YOUR_VALUE2"
  • To enable the built-in statsd listener, set the following:
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['enable_statsd'] = true
    • default['SignalFx']['collectd']['statsd_port'] : The port on which to listen (default 8125)

Plugin-specific Attributes


  • attributes/apache_plugin.rb
    • default['apache']['instanceName'] : Name of your Apache instance
    • default['apache']['url'] : URL at which to access the output of Apache's mod_status module. (default: 'http://localhost/mod_status?auto')


  • attributes/cassandra_plugin.rb
    • default['cassandra']['serviceurl'] : Your Cassandra service URL (default: 'service:jmx:rmi:///jndi/rmi://localhost:7199/jmxrmi')


  • attributes/docker_plugin.rb
    • default['docker']['dbfile_folder'] : The location on disk to store this plugin's DB files. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/docker-collectd-plugin')
    • default['docker']['python_folder'] : The location on disk to store this plugin's Python files. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/docker-collectd-plugin')
    • default['docker']['base_url'] : URL at which to connect to the Docker instance to be monitored. (default : 'unix://var/run/docker.sock')


  • attributes/elasticsearch_plugin.rb
    • default['elasticsearch']['clustername'] : Name of your ElasticSearch cluster. (default: 'elasticsearch')
    • default['elasticsearch']['indexes'] : Which indexes to monitor. (default: '_all')
    • default['elasticsearch']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')


  • attributes/iostat_plugin.rb
    • default['iostat']['path'] : The location of the iostat executable. (default: '/usr/bin/iostat')
    • default['iostat']['verbose'] : True for verbose logging. (default: 'false')
    • default['iostat']['include'] : Metrics to collect. (default: '["tps", "kB_read/s", "kB_wrtn/s", "kB_read", "kB_wrtn", "rrqm/s", "wrqm/s", "r/s", "w/s", "rsec/s", "rkB/s", "wsec/s", "wkB/s", "avgrq-sz", "avgqu-sz", "await", "r_await", "w_await", "svctm", "%util"]')
    • default['iostat']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')


  • attributes/kafka_plugin.rb
    • default['kafka']['serviceurl'] : Your Kafka service URL (default: 'service:jmx:rmi:///jndi/rmi://localhost:7099/jmxrmi')


  • attributes/memcached_plugin.rb
    • default['memcached']['hostname'] : Memcached hostname
    • default['memcached']['port'] : Memcached port


  • attributes/mesos_master_plugin.rb

    • default['mesos']['master']['python_folder'] The location on disk to store this plugin's Python files. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/mesos-collectd-plugin')
    • default['mesos']['master']['cluster'] = Cluster Name
    • default['mesos']['master']['instance'] = Instance Name
    • default['mesos']['master']['binary_path'] = Path to the directory containing mesos executables (default: '/usr/bin')
    • default['mesos']['master']['hostname'] = Mesos Master Hostname (default: 'localhost')
    • default['mesos']['master']['port'] = Mesos Master Port (default: 5050)
  • attributes/mesos_slave_plugin.rb

    • default['mesos']['slave']['python_folder'] The location on disk to store this plugin's Python files. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/mesos-collectd-plugin')
    • default['mesos']['slave']['cluster'] = Cluster Name
    • default['mesos']['slave']['instance'] = Instance Name
    • default['mesos']['slave']['binary_path'] = Path to the directory containing mesos executables (default: '/usr/bin')
    • default['mesos']['slave']['hostname'] = Mesos Slave Hostname (default: 'localhost')
    • default['mesos']['slave']['port'] = Mesos Slave Port (default: 5050)


  • attributes/mysql_plugin.rb
    • default['mysql']['database']... : 'database' is the database name that will be reported to SignalFx.
    • default['mysql']['database']['Host'] : IP address of MySQL database
    • default['mysql']['database']['Socket'] : Socket of MySQL database
    • default['mysql']['database']['User'] : Database username
    • default['mysql']['database']['Password'] : Database password
    • default['mysql']['database']['Database'] : Database name



  • attributes/postgresql_plugin.rb
    • default['postgresql']['hostname'] : Hostname or IP address of your PostgreSQL database.
    • default['postgresql']['user'] : Database username
    • default['postgresql']['password'] : Database password


  • attributes/redis_master_plugin.rb

    • default['redis_master']['hostname'] : Hostname or IP address of your Redis master instance.
    • default['redis_master']['port'] : Port on which your Redis master runs.
    • default['redis_master']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')
  • attributes/redis_slave_plugin.rb

    • default['redis_slave']['hostname'] : Hostname or IP address of your Redis slave instance.
    • default['redis_slave']['port'] : Port on which your Redis slave runs.
    • default['redis_slave']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')


  • attributes/vmstat_plugin.rb
    • default['vmstat']['path'] : The location of the vmstat executable. (default: '/usr/bin/vmstat')
    • default['vmstat']['verbose'] : True for verbose logging. (default: 'false')
    • default['vmstat']['include'] : Metrics to collect. (default: '["r", "b", "swpd", "free", "buff", "cache", "inact", "active", "si", "so", "bi", "bo", "in", "cs", "us", "sy", "id", "wa", "st"]')
    • default['vmstat']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')


  • attributes/zookeeper_plugin.rb
    • default['zookeeper']['hostname'] = Hostname or IP address of your Zookeeper instance.
    • default['zookeeper']['port'] : Port on which your Zookeeper instance runs.
    • default['zookeeper']['python_folder'] : The location on disk of the collectd Python plugin. (default: '/usr/share/collectd/python')

License & Author

Author:: SignalFx Inc (

Copyright::2015, SignalFx, Inc.

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