Grafana-Server.exe vs Grafana.exe -Server?

Documentation-related question. On the installation page for Windows:
Install Grafana on Windows | Grafana documentation
It says:
“Start Grafana by executing grafana-server.exe , located in the bin directory, preferably from the command line.”

But on the Restart page:
Start the Grafana server | Grafana documentation
It says:
“Execute grafana.exe server ; the grafana binary is located in the bin directory.”

Which one of these is correct? They both seem to do the same thing?

  • What Grafana version and what operating system are you using?
    Latest Windows MSI,
    Windows Server 2016, not my choice.

Hey @airgappednetwork, welcome to the community.

I’ve checked out the source and find out that both commands work. I’d advise using NSSM with grafana-server.exe for consistency, since grafana-server is also the service binary on Linux.

Also I’ll put a link of this post on the documentation channel on slack for future corrections and for the sake of the consistency on the docs.

Thanks a lot for the pointers.


Thank you for the welcome, @isaqueprofeta. I have been using and loving Grafana since first experiencing it in 2016.

It seems that the MSI installer seems to require NSSM, but it is not included in the package itself. This may have hung the installation on my air-gapped system. I have not confirmed this on a second system though.

It is possible to create the service using PowerShell:

# Create the new Windows Service, with a prompt to confirm.
New-Service -Name "Grafana" -BinaryPathName "D:\GrafanaLabs\grafana\bin\grafana-server.exe" -DisplayName "Grafana" -Description "Grafana Server" -StartupType Automatic -Confirm

# Creating the service does not start it, let's do that now.
Start-Service -Name "Grafana"

# Verify it is up and running.
Get-Service -Name "Grafana"
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