Brussels / 2 & 3 February 2019


Distributed Tracing: OSS Technology Update 2019

A summary on the updates in the OSS tracing ecosystem and best practices for practitioners

Distributed tracing enables DevOps practitioners to visualize and debug their systems. The years 2017 and 2018 saw great progress in this space with the rising popularity of projects such as OpenTracing, OpenCensus, Jaeger, Zipkin, and others. With the popularity also came confusion since these projects overlap in their value prop leaving practitioners confused about where they should invest their energies. The good news is that we will see a lot more consolidation in 2019.

As one of the earliest members of OpenTracing and the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, I have followed this space carefully. After a brief overview of the technology and some use cases, I will present the latest status update on the ecosystem and best practices for end users to make the most of the technologies available to them.

In this talk I will cover the following: * What is distributed tracing and how it relates to observability * A brief history of the technology (starting from the 1970s to Dapper from Google to Zipkin to present day projects) * How tracing is useful for debugging and reasoning about today's complex software systems * The key projects in tracing -- OpenTracing -- OpenCensus -- Jaeger -- Zipkin -- (any other recommendations from the Fosdem organizers) * 2017 and 2018: The era of mass confusion * 2019: The sanity that is to come based on agreements between projects that I am privy to (and will be public by then) * How practitioners should navigate the tracing ecosystem regardless of where the projects are at in their maturity


Photo of Priyanka Sharma Priyanka Sharma