Best Observability Tools for Microservices

Revolutionize your microservices with these 10 observability tools

Nipuni Arunodi
Cloud Native Daily
7 min readAug 14, 2023


Microservices architecture has become popular among developers due to its scalability and flexibility. However, this increased popularity comes with some significant challenges. For example, monitoring and troubleshooting becomes significantly challenging when the number of microservices increases. That’s where observability comes in.

Observability empowers organizations to monitor, trace, and log their microservices, providing valuable insights into their performance and behavior. In this article, I will discuss 10 observability tools tailored explicitly for microservices architectures, including Helios, Datadog, Dynatrace, Splunk and more.

What are observability tools?

Observability tools are software solutions that enable the monitoring, tracing, and logging of complex systems to gain insights into their behavior and performance. These tools collect and analyze data from various sources, including metrics, logs, and traces, providing real-time insight into your system.

Benefits of observability tools

  • Early issue detection and faster troubleshooting.
  • Optimization of system performance and resource utilization.
  • Efficient root cause analysis for problem resolution.
  • Improved scalability and capacity planning.
  • Streamlined monitoring and management processes.
  • Continuous improvement through data-driven insights.

Best observability tools## 1. Helios

Helios is an observability tool that offers comprehensive monitoring and analytics solutions for microservices and distributed applications. With its advanced technology, Helios allows organizations to gain real-time visibility into their software systems, enabling them to identify and resolve issues quickly. You can experience the benefits of Helios at no cost by signing up here.

Features of Helios

  • Offers E2E visibility into your system across microservices, serverless functions, databases, and 3rd party APIs, enabling you to quickly identify, reproduce and resolve issues.
  • Supports various languages and frameworks, including Python, JavaScript, Node.js, Java, Ruby, .NET, Go, and more.
  • Integrates with your dev tech stack.
  • It enables you to reproduce the exact flow, including HTTP requests, Kafka, RabbitMQ messages, and Lambda invocations, in a couple of clicks.
  • Provides a single source of truth for how data flows through your entire application in any environment.

2. Datadog

Datadog is a leading cloud-based monitoring and analytics platform that provide real-time visibility into their applications, infrastructure, and cloud services. With its powerful capabilities, organizations can optimize performance, identify and resolve issues and make informed decisions.

Features of Datadog

  • Robust alerting and notification systems.
  • Comprehensive dashboards and visualizations.
  • Integration with popular cloud platforms and services.
  • Security monitoring to identify threats and vulnerabilities.
  • Customizable reporting for generating tailored reports.

3. Lightstep

Lightstep is a leading observability platform that helps to gain deep insights into the performance and behavior of microservices architectures. Regardless of the application size, Lightstep can identify hidden dependencies, including 3rd-party APIs and cloud services.

Features of Lightstep

  • Support a variety of languages and frameworks.
  • Automatic change detection to reduce MTTR.
  • Works well at any scale.
  • Allows to visualize, aggregate, and analyze metrics.
  • Low cost.

4. Instana

Instana is an observability platform introduced by IBM. It automatically provides real-time, high-fidelity data at a granular level of one second and supports end-to-end tracing for mobile and web applications. Furthermore, it makes the observability data accessible for various roles, including DevOps, SRE, platform engineering, ITOps, and development teams.

Features of Instana

  • Supports microservices, Kubernetes, databases, APIs, serverless and containers.
  • Provide dashboards and visualizations, and interactions among all resources.
  • Automatically discovers and maps all services.
  • Profiles every process and maps all application dependencies.
  • Threshold-based smart alerts.
  • Automatic detection and correlation of events.

5. Dynatrace

Dynatrace is a popular observability and security tool with an analytics and automation platform powered by AI. It provides end-to-end visibility into the performance and health of cloud-native environments, microservices, and hybrid infrastructures.

Features of Dynatrace

  • Unified observability and security platform.
  • Real-time monitoring and automatic problem detection.
  • Causal AI-powered analytics for deep insights.
  • Automated remediation and intelligent problem resolution.
  • Cloud-native and microservices support.
  • End-to-end transaction visibility and distributed tracing.

6. Splunk

Splunk Observability is a leading cloud-based observability tool that provides full-fidelity monitoring and troubleshooting for your microservices. In addition, it provides real-time insights at any scale and supports over 100 open standards-based integrations.

Features of Splunk

  • Real-time monitoring and alerting.
  • Search and visualization capabilities for exploring and analyzing data.
  • Support various data sources like log files, metrics from applications and infrastructure, network traffic, and cloud platforms.
  • Indexing support.

7. SigNoz

SigNoz is an open-source observability platform that combines traces, logs, and metrics in a single interface. It allows you to analyze and monitor their data within your infrastructure, ensuring data privacy and security. Furthermore, it offers a unified view of observability data to help troubleshoot, performance optimize and make data-driven decisions.

Features of SigNoz

  • Distributed tracing and end-to-end visibility into application performance.
  • Log monitoring and analysis for collecting data logs.
  • Real-time alerting and notifications.
  • Integration with popular frameworks and technologies.
  • Anomaly detection.

8. New Relic

New Relic is an all-in-one observability platform that provides comprehensive insights into microservice performance. New Relic allows you to monitor, analyze, debug and optimize your entire stack, including databases, Kubernetes, cloud services, mobile etc.

Features of New Relic

  • Monitor performance in real-time.
  • Distributed tracing capabilities.
  • Offers synthetic monitoring to simulate user interactions.
  • Alerting with customizable thresholds.
  • Custom dashboards and visualizations.

9. Grafana Labs

Grafana Labs is another famous observability tool that allows you to query and visualize data regardless of where it’s stored. Unlike many observability tools, Grafana does not require ingesting data into a database. It provides a unique approach by unifying your existing data wherever it lives. In addition, Grafana Labs provides interactive dashboards for creating customized and interactive visualizations.

Features of Grafana Labs

  • Wide range of customizable dashboards for real-time infrastructure monitoring.
  • Advanced alerting features.
  • Cloud-native architecture for seamless scalability as needs grow.
  • Highly accessible to everyone in your organization.
  • Highly flexible with advanced querying and transformation capabilities

10. Prometheus

Prometheus is an open-source monitoring solution with metrics and alerting capabilities. It allows you to collect, store, and analyze metrics from various sources and observe the performance and health of microservices at any scale.

Features of Prometheus

  • Highly dimensional data model with metric name and key-value pairs for time series identification.
  • Multiple visualization modes, including a built-in expression browser, Grafana integration, and console template language.
  • Efficient storage of time series in memory and on local disk with scaling.
  • Client libraries are available for easy instrumentation of services, supporting over ten languages.


Observability tools for microservices are crucial in ensuring distributed systems’ performance, reliability, and security. These tools provide real-time visibility into the behaviour of microservices, allowing organizations to monitor metrics, logs, and traces.

For example, Helios provides end-to-end visibility of your microservices and simplifies troubleshooting by quickly identifying issues with minimum time and effort. Similarly, open-source tools like Prometheus and SigNoz provide a unified view of data to improve debugging and troubleshooting.

I hope these suggestions will prove helpful in your microservices development. Thank you for taking the time to read them.