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Full Description


Prometheus is a systems and service monitoring system. It collects metrics
from configured targets at given intervals, evaluates rule expressions,
displays the results, and can trigger alerts if some condition is observed
to be true.

Prometheus' main distinguishing features as compared to other monitoring systems are:

  • a multi-dimensional data model (timeseries defined by metric name and set of key/value dimensions)
  • a flexible query language to leverage this dimensionality
  • no dependency on distributed storage; single server nodes are autonomous
  • timeseries collection happens via a pull model over HTTP
  • pushing timeseries is supported via an intermediary gateway
  • targets are discovered via service discovery or static configuration
  • multiple modes of graphing and dashboarding support
  • federation support coming soon

Architecture overview


There are various ways of installing Prometheus.

Precompiled binaries

Precompiled binaries for released versions are available in the
releases section
of the GitHub repository. Using the latest production release binary
is the recommended way of installing Prometheus.

Debian and RPM packages are being worked on.

Use make

Clone the repository in the usual way with git clone. (If you
download and unpack the source archives provided by GitHub instead of
using git clone, you need to set an environment variable VERSION
to make the below work. See
issue #609 for

In most circumstances, the following should work:

$ make build
$ ./prometheus -config.file=documentation/examples/prometheus.yml

The above requires a number of common tools to be installed, namely
curl, git, gzip, hg (Mercurial CLI).

Everything else will be downloaded and installed into a staging
environment in the .build sub-directory. That includes a Go
development environment of the appropriate version.

The Makefile offers a number of useful targets. Some examples:

  • make test runs tests.
  • make tarball creates a tarball with the binary for distribution.
  • make race_condition_run compiles and runs a binary with the race detector enabled. To pass arguments when running Prometheus this way, set the ARGUMENTS environment variable (e.g. ARGUMENTS="-config.file=./prometheus.conf" make race_condition_run).

Use your own Go development environment

Using your own Go development environment with the usual tooling is
possible, too. After making changes to the files in web/static you
have to run make in the web/ directory. This generates the respective
web/blob/files.go file which embedds the static assets in the compiled binary.

Furthermore, the version information (see version/info.go) will not be
populated if you simply run go build. You have to pass in command
line flags as defined in Makefile.INCLUDE (see ${BUILDFLAGS}) to
do that.

More information

  • The source code is periodically indexed: Prometheus Core.
  • You will find a Travis CI configuration in .travis.yml.
  • All of the core developers are accessible via the Prometheus Developers Mailinglist and the #prometheus channel on


Refer to


Apache License 2.0, see LICENSE.

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